The Greek wine trading and production company with headquarters in Athens was founded in 1895 by Dr. Vassilis Kourtakis (1865-1946). He built a small winery near Markopoulo on the Attica peninsula in central Greece. He was the first Greek ever to obtain a diploma in oenology in Greece. Initially, the production was limited to the production of retsina wine, which was delivered to taverns throughout the country. Only Dimitris Kourtakis, the son of the founder, started bottling in 0.5 and 0.75 litre bottles. Today, the company is managed in the third generation by Vassilis Kourtakis (grandson of the founder). He introduced modern production methods in the 1980s, initially against the resistance of his father.
Quality wines are produced under the brand name "Kouros" and table wines under the brand name "Apelia". The wines come from the islands of Crete, Samos and Santorini, as well as from the appellations Nemea and Patras on the island of Peloponnese. The Retsina comes from Attica and is one of the most sold. In the 1990s, the Calligas winery on the island of Kefallonia was taken over and "Greek Wine Cellars" was founded as the holding company. The company employs 250 people. There are the two foreign branches "Kourtakis Deutschland GmbH" and "Kourtakis Japan LTD About 30 million bottles of wine are produced annually, 50% are exported.