Pedro Parra is a visionary. Some may describe his obsession with vineyard geology to be eccentric, but with a Phd in terroir from Paris University, he knows what he is talking about. Pedro was born in Concepción, Chile, near Bio Bio and Itata valleys, after after years of study and winemaking around the world, he has returned to his home and is becoming one of the most influential winemakers in Chile. He has worked as a consultant for many wineries, including Jean-Marc Roulot, Marco Marengo, Liger Belair, Altos las Hormigas, Chapter 24, and Zuccardi.
“Pedro Parra y Familia was born in my head many years ago, but it was only after 15 years as a consultant, traveling and working all around, I felt mature enough to begin. The main idea was always the same; make pure terroir wines from Granite soils. Make wines I like to drink, and be free to select and create from several granitic terroirs. But more important, the idea is to start something that I can share with my family, my wife Camila, and my kids Diego, Felipe and Colomba. The place was also simple; Home. Today, locations as Guarilihue, Cauquenes, Florida, Ranquil, Rere, San Rosendo, all them between ITATA and BIO BIO, are still not well known in the world. They make me think to places I love, like Galicia, Barolo, Morgon, places who were old in tradition, but unknown to the world few years ago. With my project, I hope to help all those brave vignerons that protected for more than 200 years their vines, against the industrial forest companies, against politicians, against the big wine industries who abuse of them paying them almost zero for their best grapes. And I dream to see those places, and my home, Concepción, becoming the wine center of the universe.” -- Pedro Parra
Itata is a small, remote region in the southern reaches of Chile. It has been a difficult place to visit for centuries; no roads, steep slopes, rain, and forest. This isolation was responsible for a strong local commitment to viticulture and wine, absolutely lost in time, and totally disconnected with the wine modernity that happened in Chile in the last 40 years. This isolation is the key factor for this terroir. No Bordeaux varieties invaded, no high yield production with irrigation; all of this kept the area pure and unique. In a geological sense, the area is defined by Paleozoic era, 220-300 million year old, schist and granite soils. There are no vines planted on the schist due to planting of pine and eucalyptus during the Pinochet era, so the terroir for wine in Itata is defined by the granite. Within the granitic areas, Pedro prefers to focus on the sandy quartz granite soils, as they force roots deeper than clay soils and therefore express the terroir better. Weather is coastal, cool, and cloudy with enough rain to make dry farming possible. The two varieties most widely planted in Itata are Cinsault (45 to 70 year old vines) and País (60 to 120 year old vines). -- Skurnik Wines, Importer