The User is visually guided along a processional pathway & through the process of making wine. With each step they take, they are educated about the biodynamic winemaking process.


The Land, THE WINE

What is Terroir?

The environmental factors of soil, climate & sunlight that inform the sense of character & taste of wine from a specific place.  Terroir loosely translated means " A Sense of Place."



A biodynamic Winery and Vineyard in Palisade, Colorado


a Biodynamic Winery?

A biodynamic winery is the traditional manner in which wine was crafted. It is based on listening to the earths natural dynamics.  In this project, the art of organic viticulture is illustrated to the User as they progress through the building. 


Biodynamic organic wine

In Biodynamic Viticulture, a vineyard is seen as a living ecosystem that is interconnected to other living systems. The goal is for the farmland itself to obtain ecological self-sufficiency through the use of composting, specific preparations & regenerative use of resources.

It is similar to organic farming in that the tools of Biodynamics are non-toxic, but it goes a step beyond to not use any additions such as yeast.

Biodynamic Wine is becoming increasingly popular as the negative aspects of wine are reduced when there are less chemicals & yeast added to wine.



"An organic wine is a wine made from grapes that have been grown without the use of artificial or synthetic chemicals, such as herbicides and pesticides. To keep the weeds and bugs at bay, organic farmers work with nature, rather than against it, by boosting their vineyard’s biodiversity."

For example, they introduce cover crops to provide a habitat for beneficial insects that are the natural enemy of problem species, or have small sheep graze between the vine rows, eating the grass and weeds. In this way, the vineyard becomes a self-regulating, natural ecosystem, which is able to combat problems intrinsically and eliminates the need for artificial, and potentially toxic, chemicals." 


Integrated Systems

The result of the integrated building & landscaping systems integrated is an architecture that mimics the natural dynamics of the landscape. The integration of viticulture, organic agriculture & ecological landscaping are achieved through: 

  • site responsive landscaping

  • permaculture systems

  • living walls

  • passiv haus architectural principles

  • regenerative resource cycle.

Sketch I did to describe the dynamics of a natural vineyard.

Colorado Wine Country - Palisade, Colorado

Colorado Wine Country - Palisade, Colorado


THE Architecture

CORE DESIGN Principle - Procession

The User is guided by the building. The building is guided by the landscape. The building form echoes the gradient of the landscape with a series of cascading roofs & a downward ramp.  All landscape modifications respond to the existing conditions & are created to complement this concept of processional architecture that culminates in a moment of stasis in the tasting room. 


Phases of Procession

And the winemaking process

1- The user starts at the front entrance & is greeted by a rain garden & water feature. The water feature originates at the beginning of the user procession. The user steps over a foot bridge & through the front entrance. They are invited into the guest reception & waiting area for a moment of pause.

2- Looking down the ramp, they can glimpse incredible scenery to the right and a subtle hint of the winemaking process ahead of them to the left; through windows cut into the monolothic tromb walls.

3- The processional pathway down the ramp is marked by glazing on both sides of the user with expansive landscape views to the right and the winemaking process on their left, from start to finish. The outdoor water feature to their right follows the user path & mimics their procession.

4- The user is led through this series of architectural thresholds to arrive in the tasting room after first visually witnessing all components of the winemaking cycle.  The rooflines where the user passes through are indicated by skillion rooflines that contrast with the flat roofs in service areas. This differentiation between roofs creates a series of thresholds & indicators for the user.

5- The production & processing room is all glass on the user side & arranged in a half circle - from grape crush through bottling.

6- From the tasting room, the user can move beyond the tasting room to the outdoor patio, the outdoor garden & return up through a natural walking path to the front entrance & to their original starting point.

The procession itself has a cyclical element to it under the same concept of a biodynamic farming system. Where all resources are maximized and recycled.


Building dynamics

Described in diagrammatic forM

Winery - diagram

Ecological design

Landscape & Agriculture -

watercatch with water garden that doubles as grey water restoration

polyculture guild plantings as well as a garden & orchard

viticulture plan includes cover cropping, beehives & insect corridors

biodynamic preparations include of biochar, compost tea & environmental micro-organisms


Living Architecture

Ecologically responsive elements such as -

Living walls     

Natural ventilation   

Overhung roofs     

Thermal mass - tromb wall



Agricultural storage

employee facilities with shower & kitchen

covered outdoor agriculture area

controlled environment fermentation bottling area, holding tanks & racking

restrooms & ADA accessible throughout

tasting room

outdoor trellised patio


Interior Renderings

Wine production process shown as guests pass down ADA ramp.

Arrival at tasting room

Arrival at tasting room


Outdoor patio & creek overlook the outdoor sitting area from the Tasting room.


Perspective from under the roof overhang of the outdoor patio tasting room at sunset.