There are striking wines, and then there are striking vineyards which have become landmarks in their own right thanks to their innovative design.
For those avid wine travellers who are planning to taste their way through the vineyards of Europe this year, here are a few Lazenne favourites which have to be seen to be believed. Can you squeeze them into your itinerary?
Bodegas Ysios, Spain
A sea of wine waves in the heart of Spain, this dramatic and dominating construction in the Rioja wine region is an impressive 200m in length and 8,000m² in total area! The brief, asking for an iconic design which was well integrated into the surrounding landscape, was well and truly answered by architect Santiago Calatrava and contains state of the art winemaking facilities. Bodega Ysios, named for the Egyptian deities Isis and Osiris, craft fruit-forward Rioja’s and are part of the Pernod Ricard family.
Marqués de Riscal, Spain
It’s only fitting that one of Spain’s most iconic names in wine has an iconic winery to match! Frank O. Gehry, the man you may recognise as being behind New York’s Guggenheim Museum, was commissioned to create a masterpiece which reflected the innovative spirit of Marqués de Riscal. It’s a fairly avant-garde design, wouldn’t you agree? If you look closely enough, the top of the winery, built using titanium, boasts many references to what is crafted inside it. Pink for the wine, gold for the mesh used around the bottles, and silver for the foil bottle top. Also a hotel, restaurant and wine spa, this Rioja winery is one destination we can see ourselves calling home for a little while!
Château Cheval Blanc, France
We’d expect nothing less than the best from one of the most illustrious, and expensive, names in wine. It’s a modern, minimalist feel from the exterior through to the interior of the winery at Château Cheval Blanc in Bordeaux’s Merlot-dominated right bank commune of Saint-Emilion. This design, conceived by renowned architect Christian de Portzamparc, resembles something of a flying saucer on the outside and this space-age theme is continued Inside to the egg-like concrete vats (pictured above), such an essential ingredient in the winemaking process. There are 52 in total!
Marchese Antinori, Italy
We know, we don’t really need an excuse to visit the amazing Italian producer Marchese Antinori, responsible for such vinous pleasures as the Super Tuscan Tignanello, yet the opportunity to mosey around this stunning building wouldn’t go amiss either. From a distance, the structure is seemingly camouflaged into the rolling Chianti hills, yet, once a little closer, the cutting-edge design by Archea Associati takes on so much more detail, befitting of the complex and ever evolving wines which are born here.
Those Tuscans know a thing or two about unique and original vineyard design, that’s for sure! Designed by celebrated Swiss architect Mario Botta (who counts the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art amongst his portfolio), the winery at Petra Wines features his hallmark cylindrical element, almost an altar to the sun! When we consider how essential an ingredient the sun is in the vineyard cycle, we can completely understand why the building sits perfectly in its surrounds.