Published on March 27th, 2009 | by Keith Rockmael1
Greenest Napa Valley Winery Opens
Usually when people visit a winery, people look for various shades of white or dark red, but here our color paradigm might shift to say Green. The recently opened CADE Winery offers not only solar power and organically farmed winery but hopes to garner LEED Gold status and if so, would be the first Estate Gold LEED certified winery in the Napa Valley.
When visiting a winery, people’s olfactory system normally goes into overdrive but instead of inhaling the aromas of vanilla, rosemary, oak and sage here we took deep breaths of the air. As in indoor air quality. No stuffy AC here as the building relies on natural ventilation. Although the wines remain something to admire, we also dig the other green aspects. CADE utilizes 100% solar power and organic farming methods which both look so green and tasty.
From top to bottom, our Green buzz comes from the other building features like the concrete composed that contains a generous amount (30 percent) of fly ash, steel made up of 98 percent recycled material, FSC glass and wood, as well as blue jeans for insulation and its own concrete mass for cooling.
The Green aspects just continue. It’s too bad that we didn’t bike or drive our electric car (we did carpool) because the winery offers a plug-in base for hybrid electric cars; and bicycle racks. Even better, they offer a shower (hopefully with low flow showerhead) so cyclists can clean up before one of the numerous tastings or events.
For the foodies, the winery offers a full-time chef on site who focuses on organic, sustainable cuisine grown on site. We haven’t had the chance to chow down on the sustainable cuisine but we’ll check back when we do.
Curious about the name? The winery name CADE derives from a Shakespearean term used for an oak cask or barrel. How about the size? in this case size matters as the winery comprises more than 60 acres, 23 of which were planted as vineyards in 2003. Of the remaining land, 28 acres will be protected in a land trust to ensure that they will always remain open space. Now there should be a big “Cheers” to that fact.