Mitolo Wines Cellar Door and Restaurant, McLaren Vale
Through the looking glass and towards the wine glass – the Italian sagra reinvented
South Australian Chapter of Australian Institute of Architects, (Keith Neighbour Award for Commercial Architecture), 2019
A muscular addition to McLaren Vale, the Mitolo Wines Cellar Door powerfully announces itself in the landscape. Fire, earth, wind, and water collide across a composition of shipping containers joined through a lightweight glass hearth housing a tasting room and restaurant.
Tectvs' architecture features a playful arrangement of shipping containers references the Italian sagra; a traditional informal ‘pop-up’ social space celebrating spirituality, food and family. Critically, the translation from sagra to cellar door through shipping containers allows minimal impact on the vineyard site, which can be easily returned to its original state.
Each shipping container forms a part to a whole, performing specialty functions that articulate around a common dining space. A tasting room, restaurant kitchen, building services and wine stores act as an armature within the programmatic distribution to theatrically conceal the workings of the cellar door, only revealing them at key moments for dramatic effect. Internally, soft timber floors, ceilings and dining chairs play warmly alongside a corten steel pizza oven and wood fireplace to complement the severity of the shipping containers. To the rear of the site a large timber gable pavilion informs the temporary nature of the site and opens up into the landscape.