Back in the day, it was just a visit to a farmer’s simple vineyard followed by the tasting of their wine out in the field. It’s still this way in many regions, but its also become high-end affair in many wineries, with each region trying to outdo the other in opulence.
Across the world, architects are building awe-inspiring monuments to the fruit of the vine in some of the most high-end wine regions on earth. Big names like Gehry and Calatrava are erecting stuctures that have the sole purpose of connoting the gravitas of the wine within.
We’ve compiled a list of 5 of the most grand wineries worldwide, in places such as Napa, Rioja and Bordeaux. These places are designed to overwhelm your senses, both by what you see and what you taste.
Castello Di Amorosa
Dario Sattui was determined to erect the most beautiful and interesting building in North America for showcasing great wines, so he built this castle in Napa. The 121,000 square foot, 12th century style, authentic Tuscan castle winery’s construction was started in 1994.
A project of Baron Philippe de Rothschild and Robert Mondavi, Opus One was created to be the United State’s first ultra-premium wine. In the 1980s, after her father’s death, Baroness Philippine de Rothschild left a stage career that included the Comédie Française and the Renault-Barrault Theatre Company, bringing her own exquisite style and creativity to the design, construction, and operation of Opus One.
Located in the Saint-Julien appellation of the Bordeaux region of France and designed by famous Parisian architect Paul Abadie, this Bordeaux Chateau is so iconic that it graces the wine’s label. The word “Beaucaillou” means beautiful stones; a testament to the castle’s magnificence.
This French-Normandy structure at this Sonoma winery made the winery famous before the wine did. In fact, it was the attention the Ledson family got from the fascinating structure that caused them to consider making wine there in the first place. Construction of the castle was started in 1989 by the Ledson family who thought the property would be ideal for residence. In the end, the castle was turned into a winery and tasting room, largely because of the intense public interest.
One of the most modern wineries in Spain, the building is supposed to resemble a butterfly. According to the winery’s website, the three halls of wine-making process – production, cask hall and bottle rack – take advantage of the thermal, light and acoustic conditions of the building. It’s a gorgeous piece of of art everyone must see as long as we have it around.