Rudd Oakville Estate’s Managing Director Oscar Henquet discovered his passion for the luxury hospitality industry at a very young age while working with his family’s hotel business in The Netherlands. Spending summers amidst vineyards in Provence with his parents, Oscar’s exposure to the world of wine started at a young age.
One of two children, Oscar grew up in the region where Belgium, Holland and Germany intersect, and as a result, quickly learned the importance and value of understanding various cultures while becoming fluent in the English, Dutch, French and German languages. Oscar received a degree in Hotel Management from the Maastricht School of Hotel Management, founded by his grandfather. Upon graduation, Oscar pursued positions abroad, including an 8-month project in China where he was heavily involved with the opening of Crowne Plaza Chengdu in Chengdu, China.
Oscar gained further experience and expertise working at esteemed properties located in Belgium, France and Israel, but it was a trip to New York with his family in 1997 that set his future course: exhilarated by the city’s energy and rhythm, he decided to relocate there.
It was during this period that Oscar decided his future would be spent in the private hospitality sector, where he would apply his understanding of organizational protocols and internal structure, but maintain the level of attention to detail and personal interaction with guests that had attracted him to the industry. In 2003, Oscar accepted a position as Director of Operations at Nicole Farhi USA, where he managed daily food and beverage operations for five years.
While still at Farhi, Oscar opened 202 Restaurant in Chelsea Market, which won New York Magazine’s “Best Brunch” Award in 2006 and 2007. In 2008, Oscar accepted the role of General Manager at Rouge Tomate, where he coordinated the restaurant’s $15 million 2008 opening.
Oscar’s achievements and success at Rouge Tomate over the next two-and-a-half years attracted the ever-watchful eye of Graydon Carter and Jeff Klein at Monkey Bar, and in August 2010, Oscar took on the position of General Manager at the trendy midtown restaurant.
J Pearce is a boutique wine project that was started by great friends, Andrew Renda and Jarred Pearce. Andy and Jarred met in 2005 when Andy hired Jarred to work alongside him at Vintner’s Collective in downtown Napa.
Prior to Andy’s career in wine, it was a love of food and the restaurant industry where he first gained experience. Like many others, his first job was as a dishwasher for a gourmet caterer in his hometown. By age seventeen, he began cooking at The Country Club in Brookline MA, which is home to three US Opens, and the 1999 Ryder Cup. It was there where he was first introduced to the pairing of haute cuisine and world class wines.
After several years in the food industry, front and back of the house, he chose to start his quest to obtain more knowledge about the world of wine and spirits. The next eight years were spent helping to manage retail wine shops in the Boston area. His exposure was not just limited to California wines, but to a broad spectrum of global offerings.
Countless hours were spent tasting in order to gain a more refined palate and true understanding of what the world of wine has to offer. This passion for a lifelong career in the wine industry was set in motion, and it was time to relocate.
Andy and his bride to be Kelly, sold all of their belongings and packed a car to make the pilgrimage from Boston to Napa, no jobs, just a destination, the legendary Napa Valley!
They made a temporary home in a rental cottage as Andy pursued his dream, putting his passion and knowledge for wine to the test. The better part of the next decade was spent as the Director of Sales of Vintner’s Collective surrounded by top boutique producers. More importantly over that stretch, Kelly and he got married and now have two beautiful children Maxwell and Adelaide. His family is his driving force.