CORTE D'AIBO - NEW WINERY, AGING CELLAR AND SHOWROOM, MONTEVEGLIO (BO) PROJECT BRIEF Corte d'Aibos’ new winery is a place where one can drink a glass of wine, learn about the rural village history and enjoy the landscape where the wine is produced. Corte d'Aibos’ ageing cellar is where the core part of the winemaking work takes place. The new winery show room acts as the telescope between the agricultural landscape of the vines and the wild landscape characterized by gullies. The building site and vineyard are nestled in the Natural Park of the Abbazia di Monteveglio, which is characterized by its unique badlands landscape. The design of Corte d'Aibos’ new winery is the result of great teamwork amongst different professionals who made their contribution while working in great harmony and with respect for each other’s work. The design team included RP Studio Associated Architects and Marco Rinaldi Engineering, but also Antonio and Mario key members of Corte d'Aibo's company, who were fundamental participants, always attentive and open to listening to proposals that were not always easy to accept. Among these key figures were: Adriano Zago, winemaker and expert in biodynamics and in oenological processes, Gianni Piombi, the site manager and Matilde Doriano the outdoor planner and green installation consultant. These and others were professionals with whom construction work was carried out in an atmosphere of open dialogue during which ideas were exchanged and integrated to create the final project. The winemaking process adopted by the company offers "certified" guarantees, which free the company from using empirical procedures of the past, and enable it to adopt advanced technologies to improve production performance of the wine both qualitatively and quantitatively. However, this is done while still maintaining the characteristics of a quality wine; something which is achieved with artisanal care that distinguishes the individuality of the product making it a unique and recognizable one. Undoubtedly, the compositional-architectural aspect of the building, in relation to the landscape in which it is inserted, contributes to enhancing the image of the wine and increases its intrinsic value. A consumer’s perceived value of the wine does not depend exclusively on its organoleptic characteristics and is instead based on several factors. These include: the image that is perceived of the place in which the wine is cultivated, the traditions and history of the land, the culture of production and the technical knowledge shared by the locals and the image and placement that the company wants to have in the market. With this in mind, the need arose to complement the production cellar with a qualified, updated, functional space dedicated to refining the relationship with customers and the landscape. This was especially important considering that the company is situated in the natural park of the abbey of Monteveglio. The new winery was designed in close proximity of the historic court following these requirements: - the building must be strongly connected to the historic court; - the building must blend in harmoniously with the existing volumes of the landscape that surrounds it; - the building is easily accessed by pedestrians and is well connected with other receptive and productive environments within the historical court; - the building functions as a new access to the court; - the building takes advantage of the difference in altimetry between the square and the meadow downstream so as to not appear imposing. The new winery recalls and reinterprets the structure of the barn. It is laid out on two levels, one of which is a semi-basement which takes advantage of the sloping landscape. The basement, in contrast with the ground floor, is a closed space which allows less light to penetrate it, for it is where the wine is produced. The ground floor is an open environment where the windows, which face the hills on one side and the badlands on the other, create an airy, permeable place, overlooking the valley. The space acts as a telescope both for those who are inside, and those who are outside, by letting in lots of light and allowing visitors to see through the winery from one end to the other. The north and south façades are characterized by arcades. The southern arcade creates a porch, a protected, yet open area, where laboratory and educational functions are performed. The northern facing arcade, instead is functional to the wine cellar and is used for labeling, storage and unloading. During initial inspections of the landscape, the idea was developed that the new winery building should not only fit within that natural context, but its perception should change with the passing of the seasons. Therefore, grapevines were planted and in some years will cover the two longest facades of the building. The east and west facades are to be covered with ornamental vines. Having vines grow on the structure of the new winery makes the building look "alive”, and makes its appearance morph throughout the seasons as the vines react to climatic variations. Along the walls of the winery, brickwork reinterpreting the classic “gelosie in laterizio” has been inserted. Historically this kind of brickwork was necessary to ventilate the high rooms of the barns. For the purposes of the winery the brickwork contributes to the buildings’ atmosphere while also creating a space that is permeable to wind. On the interior, the walls of the basement are finished with painted raw c.a., while those of the showroom are finished with wood panels to create a warm box where to stay. All interior floors are continuous black concrete smoothed with a trowel machine.
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