The winery building is two stories with an observation balcony on the upper level to allow visitors the opportunity to look down into the working production floor of the winery. The large steel fermenting tanks sit side-by-side against the temperate retaining wall created by nestling the lower level of the building into the hillside for better energy efficiency. Wine production occurs on the ground floor of the building, as well as on the covered exterior Crush Pad, and within the wine cave. A stairway connects the working floor to the wine cave floor set thirteen feet lower for workers to travel quickly between areas with piping installed for the wine to make the same trip down to the cave to fill the barrels.
The wine cave serves as both a storage facility for the many wine varieties aging in barrels and as a special entertainment facility for guests. A large private dining area is set just off the main portal entry across from a private wine library offering a quintessential way to celebrate wine. The north portal’s courtyard has been deliberately designed to be grand in scale to allow for special events to occur in a level area carved from the hillside with views to the north.
Careful thought has also been placed into outdoor spaces to provide visitors an opportunity to experience the beautiful surroundings in different settings. The Picnic Pavilion is a covered shelter complete with a fireplace and BBQ area that is open on all sides to the views. The center courtyard offers two levels of outdoor landscaped space protected from the winds. Pathways lead visitors throughout the property to the separate buildings and further down the hill to an open-air amphitheater for concerts and cultural events. A large focus of the design has been placed on creating a variety of spaces for wine club events, weddings, corporate retreats and other special occasions.
The design of Helwig Winery was created to provide a casual winery experience, allowing the chance for visitors to not only drink great wine, but drink in the beautiful surroundings.
Contractor: Sunseri Associates, Inc.
Wine Cave Contractor: Glen Ragsdale Underground Associates, Inc.
Photography: Sage Architecture, Inc.