Discover the Work of Friedensreich Hundertwasser, Architect of Quixote Winery

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With this post about Quixote Winery in the Napa Valley, the Great Wine Capitals begins a series of articles about the winners of a 2016 'Best Of Wine Tourism' award in the Architecture category.


In 1989, Carl Doumani discovered the work of Friedensreich Hundertwasser, a Viennese painter, architect, ecologist and philosopher. Believing that the wine world had transformed a beverage of consummate pleasure into an absurdly serious pursuit, he commissioned Hundertwasser to design a winery to combat these notions.

Noted for his extensive work in Austria and in his second home, New Zealand. Hundertwasser's architectural philosophy was devoted to elevating man's sense of himself. The Quixote Winery is the only building designed by Hundertwasser in the United States.

The wilt and whimsy of his design delights people of all ages and persuasions. Besides a very free flowing design (no straight line in nature) evoking the work of Gaudi in Barcelona, there are basically three "signature" Hundertwasser's elements:

1. A sod roof to blend in with surrounding landscape

2. Exuberant use of ceramic tile

3. A gold leaf onion dome

Hundertwasser was thinking green before Green Architecture and LEED certification were even on the horizon. The landscaping is designed to be practical and natural.  Tall wild grasses increase the visual impact of the winery as you ascend the pathway to our reception area.  Rosemary bushes, thyme, persimmon, buddha's hand citrus, pomegranate, fig, and nectarine not only enhance the beauty of our building, but they provide a bounty each year for all to enjoy. 

Quixote Winery has been called "whimsical" and "eccentric." To those who have experienced Quixote's architecture and breathtaking surroundings in the golden hillsides of the Stags Leap District appellation, the 42-acre wine-producing property is a world all its own.

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