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Impeccable Taste

Tuesday, October 15th, 2013

By Gwendolyn Purdom
Photos by Adrian Gregorutti

Like a fine wine, great architecture has layers of complexity—and plenty of flavor.  So when Signum Architecture’s Juancarlos Fernandez was brought on to envision one of Napa Valley’s hottest new wineries, he bucked the traditional and opted for something sleek that would set itself apart. The owners of Brand Winery initially wanted a classic barn structure to reflect the pastoral hillside setting, but Fernandez pushed them to consider a different rural motif.

“The concept comes from mining towns in Colorado and Utah. They are taller buildings, more simple in their shapes, and more basic in their design,” Fernandez, who worked at Lail Design Group when he designed the project, says. “I used those ideas and concepts and tried to bring a European flavor to the project.”

Brand Winery now stretches across twelve acres perched above Lake Hennessey, its contemporary corrugated metal main building jutting into the open sky.  Working with landscape designer Hoichi Kurisu, Fernandez accented his mining mindset with natural elements that would reflect the surroundings. Boulders that dot the grounds were dug out of the hill to create a 6,000-square-foot wine cave. “We located them around the winery in a way that gave the sense that they were around it and we just carved our niche into the hill,” Fernandez says. 

Pick up a copy of the October issue of Design Bureau to see the full story in good old-fashioned print. 

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