Wine is produced in many parts of the usa, and some of the best varietals flourish in the mild and rainy Northwest. Sokol Blosser, a family-owned firm that helped launch Oregon’s Willamette Valley as a viticultural center 40 years ago, commissioned Allied Works to develop a master plan, and design a new building for tastings and events. It was an inspired choice, for firm principal Brad Cloepfil has won acclaim for his art museums, and opened a second office in New York, while remaining deeply attached to his native Oregon. He grew up in the country, and worked on his parents’ farm, before starting his practice in the city of Portland.
All over the world, architects are being challenged to rethink the winery as a contemporary expression of tradition and innovation, agriculture and technology, production and hospitality. In Spain, before the recession hit, wineries were competing for attention, commissioning eye-grabbing buildings from Pritzker prizewinners. By contrast, Oregon retains its quiet, provincial character; client and architect had no desire to show off on this project.