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Designing a Wine Cellar: The Pinnacle of Customization

Wednesday, October 1st, 2008 at 5:05:27 PM
by David M., Wine Enthusiast Companies


As a Wine Cellar Design Specialist, I’m often asked: “where do you start?” The task of planning and building a wine cellar can sound difficult, but we do our best to make the process simple. Of the utmost importance is of course a customer’s satisfaction with the end result. One of my recent clients, the Santos family, was so happy that they sent photos of our design work. The key is open communication and listening to your customers needs.  Before doing anything, we discussed their wine cellar dreams, so that I could tailor the cellar to meet them.

It can begin with a simple hand sketch showing the dimensions of the proposed space.  This is the point where I would spend some time reviewing goals and needs such as bottle count, storage of large formatted bottles, and determining if the wine cellar is for function or a showpiece.


Our goal for the Santoses was to build a wine cellar that would exceed 1000 bottles.  In the cellar, they were looking to create an atmosphere surrounding their showcase cellar. The outside room is detailed with winemaking equipment, a bar and a center dining table. Leading to the entrance, we have vintage oak barrel ends near their custom etched glass door.  We soffited around the ceiling so we could install elevated, raised panels. We created space for bulk storage, utilizing diamond bins and cubes.  These areas are great for large format bottles and cases of the same varietal.  In creating a showcase cellar, we had to address the need for a quiet, efficient, long lasting commercial-grade cooling system.


In addition, the family didn’t want to see any ductwork running throughout their cellar and their adjacent entertaining room, so we opted for a ductless split system where we have a remote condenser and a wall-mounted evaporator that was concealed within the racking. Having a fully customized door with an etched logo that matched the wine cellar racks really tied the two spaces together and created one magnificent room. To enhance their cellar even further, we dipped and hand-rubbed their racks with a beautiful light Danish stain that brought out the beauty of the All Heart Redwood color and grain.  We hid the evaporator from our custom cooling system with a latticed grill that was incorporated within the racking.  There was custom art displaying in their center arch and lead lights that would illuminate throughout the high reveal portions of the racking.


It was satisfying to see the end result and to learn how pleased the Santos family was with our work. They were a real pleasure and I love being a part of the enjoyment we all share in everything wine!  If you would like a FREE custom wine cellar consultation, call us at  800.377.3330

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