A “Starr” Winery – a state-of-the-art facility is completed

FOOTHILLS WINEMAKERS continue to innovate despite a sluggish economy, signaling a bright future.

Nowhere is this more evident than at Sierra Starr Vineyard & Winery in Grass Valley, which just built a new wine processing facility. “It’s among the newest, biggest and most energy efficient in the foothills,” says owner/winemaker Phil Starr.

The state-of-the-art winery epitomizes the can-do spirit of Sierra Vintners to make their wines stand out amid the competition.

Sierra Starr, a “rising star” in its own right since acquiring a vineyard in 1995, has hardly sat idle during the recession. It also bought a new, bigger tasting room in the
historic downtown to showcase its wines.

The new winery is designed to maintain a 58-65º ambient temperature all year, ideal for winemaking and storage. This was accomplished by burying part of the building underground and using structural insulated panels (or SIP panels).

The 4,900-square-foot building features energy-efficient lighting, as well as 15 skylights.

The crush pad area of the roof is designed for the weight of a forklift. The grapes benefit from a “gravity flow” system to the wine tanks below, minimizing the use of pumps.

The new crush pad also provides a spectacular view of the vineyard, terraced lawns, heritage oaks and a stage for summer concerts, adds assistant winemaker/vineyard manager Jackson Starr.

All told, the new winery can handle five times the current production at Sierra Starr. Best of all, it will help produce more award- winning wines.

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