With a view south to the bay beyond, the new winemaking facility for Ravenswood Winery nestles into the hill at the north end of a working gravel quarry. Within a geographically restricted site, the project is an orchestration of the circulation requirements of an active quarry with a new winery, including production facilities and visitor accommodations.
The building itself is an identifiable vernacular form. The design pays careful attention to how the shape of the structure comes into view during the approach to the site, the profile shifting and arching in relation to the hills. The plaza serves as both a destination and an integral part of the circulation, where the paths of the grapes, employees and guests are gathered and oriented. The building “canopy” serves as the unifying element holding the disparate forms together.
Pedestrian movement was designed to acknowledge the relationship with the surrounding hills and illustrate the process of the wine making. Visitors enter the production facility via a cove formed by a “bite” in the building. The cove becomes a discreet element that creates a pause between the shed and the landscape beyond. While ascending the stair nestled into the “bite”, visitors are offered glimpses of the wine-making process through a series of windows.
The design addresses the desire for large functional workspaces while responding to the wide panorama of the valley. The building “retains” the hills, while opening to the panoramic view of the south.