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"Everything is strongly connected to the local history of Sogamoso. There once lived a rich gentleman here, called Hernán Archila Montejo, that on his vacations to France noticed the similarity of both Sogamoso and France's climate in the summer. So back in 1927 he imported European fruit trees: plums, pears and peaches. With these plants, and because he was an intelligent man, he also brought a professional from France who was such a great man. Later he became good friends with my father. This specialist called Don Joseph Duret didn't only follow up on fruit trees; he also acted as an advocate of the French culture – especially for drinking wine – and of course my father as his friend found himself as a student of these teachings at some point. So some years later, it must have been in 1944, I was around 11 at that time, my father took me to the store Aponte de Sogamoso and bought an excellent French wine: Chateau d’Yquem. He let my try it - only a little drop - and pointing to a grapevine that grew close-by and said: “Delicious, isn't it? It's made out of this plant”. This is when the idea of producing wine here in Sogamoso was created. Although the idea was still very dark and uncertain, this is when I first thought about it. I couldn't understand how no one ever thought about it before. How was it possible they loved drinking French wine next those plants growing and thriving and not even thinking about using them. That's actually one of the biggest problems here in Colombia: The people aren’t curious about the matters of nature. They didn't even wonder where these plants came from, they just accepted their existence here like they had dropped out of the sky. Anyway, it took me a very long time until the idea became clearer. It was in the 60s that I was working on my PhD in Mainz, a German city where the culture of drinking wine has been established since the roman occupation. There I learned a lot about growing and producing wine, of course, since my colleagues and I visited wine taverns – there called Weinstuben -  every evening. If I have had the money back then I probably would have opened up a vineyard right away. But I didn't and it took me another 20 years to actually do it. In 1987 then, finally the first wine was produced here in Puntalarga where I had bought a small hillside and planted European grapevines. Since then we already celebrated 30 of our annual wine festivals and now our wine is even being sold in France."

"Todo está fuertemente conectado con la historia local de Sogamoso. Había un personaje aquí en Sogamoso, un señor acaudalado llamado Hernán Archila Montejo, que durante sus vacaciones a Francia notó una vez la similitud del clima de Sogamoso y de Francia en verano. Así que en 1927 importó árboles frutales europeas: ciruelos, perales y durazneros. Y con esas plantas, ya que era un hombre muy inteligente, también trajo a un profesional, un horticultor, de Francia. Este profesional fue un gran hombre, quien más tarde se hizo buen amigo de mi padre. En fin, este especialista francés, su nombre era Don Joseph Duret, no sólo se ocupó del cultivo de los árboles frutales, si no ademas actuaba como promotor de la cultura francesa, especialmente por beber vino, y, por supuesto, mi padre como amigo se encontró a sí mismo como alumno de esas enseñanzas en algún momento. Entonces, algunos años después, debió ser en 1944 y yo tenía alrededor de 11 en ese momento, mi padre me llevó a el almacen Aponte de Sogamoso y compró un excelente vino francés: Chateau d’Yquem. Dejó que lo intentara, sólo una pequeña gota, y señalando una planta de vid que crecía cerca, dijo: "Delicioso, ¿no es así? Sale de esta planta”. Y fue entonces cuando me nació la idea de producir vino aquí en Sogamoso. Todavía fue muy oscuro e incierto, pero eso fue lo primero que pensé. No pude entender cómo nadie lo había pensado antes. ¿Cómo era posible que les gustara beber vino francés, al lado esas plantas que crecían y florecían sin ni siquiera pensar en usarlas? Ese es uno de los problemas más grandes aquí en Colombia: la gente no estan curiosa sobre las cosas de la naturaleza. Ni siquiera se preguntaban de dónde venían estas plantas, simplemente aceptaron su existencia aquí como si hubieran caído del cielo. De todos modos, me tomó mucho tiempo hasta que la idea se aclaró. Fue en los años 60 cuando estaba trabajando en mi doctorado en Mainz, una ciudad alemana donde la cultura de beber vino se estableció desde la ocupación romana. Allí aprendí mucho sobre cómo cultivar y producir vino, por supuesto, ya que mis colegas y yo visitábamos tabernas de bebedores de vino - que allí se llaman Weinstuben - cada noche. Si hubiera recuperado el dinero en ese momento, probablemente habría abierto un viñedo en el Rin de inmediato. Pero no lo tuve y me tomó otros 20 años para hacerlo. En 1987, finalmente, el primer vino se produjo aquí en Puntalarga, donde compré una lomita y planté vides europeas. Desde entonces, ya celebramos 30 de nuestros festivales anuales de vino y ahora nuestro vino se vende en Francia."

- Marco


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