Interior architect Ingo Haerlin designed the basement with a new wine cellar room, which blends harmoniously into the overall picture and creates a contrast to the surroundings thanks to the innovative concrete facade. The facade tells a story through the play of light, while visitors can follow the path of the 140,000 liters of wine.
Stein-Bockenheim is a small town in the largest wine-growing district in Germany . This is where the Steitz family winegrowers have their headquarters – in a traditional farmstead with sandstone walls. After a new generation took the helm, they wanted their wine’s claim to combine tradition and modernity to reflected in the architecture of the winery. Interior designer Ingo Haerlin from the creative office DESIGN IN ARCHITEKTUR took on responsible for the project. “The first structural changes began around nine years ago with the redesign of the wine cellar and office,” he recalls. “After that, we went through the winery inch by inch, so to speak.”
The winery has recently been expanded to include a new wine tank warehouse. Haerlin describes the architectural challenges in these words: “We had to integrate the new building harmoniously into the existing ensemble of the L-shaped production facility and guest house. But a wine tank warehouse is also subject to strict climatic requirements so the quality of the wines isn’t jeopardized by improper storage.”
The decision to build the 178 sqm new building in concrete was just logical. Ultimately a shell made of reinforced concrete with core insulation and prefabricated concrete parts ensures optimal thermal insulation. During the summer, the concrete cools down overnight and releases the coolness back into the interior during the day - so the climate is regulated in a natural way.
The new building with its concrete facade and clear lines also deliberately sets itself apart from its surroundings. “It was important to us to continue the path we took with the newly designed wine cellar in the new wine tank warehouse, to combine different materials, and create contrasts and harmonious connections.” For the monolithic facade, Haerlin decided to use RECKLI textured matrices: “Pure exposed concrete with smooth formwork would have been too clean for us, especially in contrast to the sandstone of the guest house.” Instead, the 2/20 Ahr matrix was selected from the RECKLI SELECT series - a wooden texture with boards arranged evenly next to each other.
“We wanted a subtle texture reminiscent of the classic process of wooden formwork,” says Haerlin. The result is a facade that is not obtrusive and, depending on the incidence of light, shows a beautiful play with the horizontal texture. This horizontal effect of the facade is also emphasized by a joint that runs across the entire wall above the entrance. The precast concrete parts were cast by the Eschenauer concrete block works.
Haerlin also emphasizes the great collaboration with RECKLI: “Communication was perfect for us. RECKLI provided us with samples that helped us with the final selection of the matrices and answered all of the questions that were really important to us in the design process.”
The result is a piece of modern architecture that is embedded harmoniously between the existing historic buildings, following their orientation and height as well as the level of the terrain. There’s also an additional highlight for visitors to the guest house: The new entrance area now leads past the wine tank warehouse, allowing a direct glimpse into the production and storage of 140,000 liters of wine.