Genuwine Cellars is a boutique design and build firm located in central Canada (Winnipeg, Manitoba). With nearly 20 years of experience designing and building custom wine cellars around North America and the world, we are well-accustomed to working with general contractors near and far. We have extensive experience working at a distance with other construction professionals from around the world, including New York, London and Beijing.
General Contractors contacting Genuwine Cellars generally take one of two approaches:
a) They have a pre-existing wine cellar design (produced by them, or provided to them via a designer or architect), and they want Genuwine to review this design, provide recommendations as required (e.g., feasibility, cost projections, climate control advice, etc.), and then ultimately build and install the wine cellar; or
b) They have a space in the floor plan of their project demarcated for a wine cellar, and they request that Genuwine handle all aspects of the design, build and installation.
In both cases, you (the Contractor) and Genuwine will share information as required.
Material selections, physical samples, and custom stain matches are generally coordinated between Genuwine and your client (and/or client’s designer) directly.
Genuwine will provide you (the Contractor) with preliminary rough-in information; full CAD drawings of the wine cellar; and MEP plans (including cooling unit cut sheets; custom Climate Control Plans (with custom ducting design); custom lighting and electrical plans.)
Some contractors prefer to handle all contact with Genuwine directly, effectively relieving their clients of any added responsibility.
Others prefer to immediately introduce Genuwine to their client and “hand them off” for all aspects related to the wine cellar. In both cases, Genuwine remains sensitive to both client and contractor throughout the process, and always keeps in mind the ultimate objective—to create an aesthetically strong and functional wine cellar.
Note on Initial Project Costing
We can certainly appreciate the need for quick costing estimates for budgeting purposes, and while it is possible to provide rough estimates and guidelines in a timely manner, please keep the following in mind:
A wine cellar is not a typical construction project. Any architect/designer/builder that has gone through a wine cellar design and build will attest to the staggering amount of detail entailed for such a relatively small space. Working through the myriad complexities requires attention and time. To that end…
Genuwine Cellars takes all wine cellar projects very seriously, for at least three reasons:
- A wine cellar often represents a significant investment;
- The wine that needs to be protected inside the wine cellar is often an even greater investment; and
- The complexities involved to protect both of those investments require astute attention to detail.
Enlisting the help of Genuwine Cellars means bringing onboard a hyper-specialized team that will attend to those critical details. We take the time to make things right.
Note on Using a Variety of Trades for a Wine Cellar
It is common for home builders and general contractors to view wine cellars as just another construction project, and following that logic, their initial thought is to simply enlist all of their various trades to satisfy the different requirements. For example, they’ll use:
a) Their designers for the wine cellar design;
b) Their HVAC subcontractor for the wine cellar mechanical;
c) Their glazier subcontractor for the wine cellar glass walls and doors;
d) Their millworker for the millwork (and potentially some of the wine racks) and the final installation;
e) A third party (like Genuwine) for wine racks only; and
f) Various trades for room preparation and lighting.
Employing this strategy and expecting the wine cellar to function properly is like expecting a tornado moving through a junkyard to result in a fully functional Boeing 747 aircraft.
Why is that? Because:
a) Your designers will likely not know the intricacies of wine cellar design, nor know about collecting considerations like large format storage, case storage, etc. Moreover, they may also be unaware of what is readily available in terms of wine storage displays, thus limiting the project from the start;
b) Your HVAC subcontractor will not have proven mechanical solutions to maintaining a consistent temperature of 55F whilst still maintaining adequate humidity levels, which could result in potentially damaging the wine and the cellar;
c) Your glazier subcontractor will not be experienced in using glass to create a sealed climate controlled environment, and could create condensation issues and mechanical issues;
d) Your millworker will not know the intricacies of wine storage (e.g., varying bottle sizes) and will likely not be adequately set up to produce many styles of wine racking in an economic or timely fashion, again limiting the project.
Note: It is however economical to have your trades build out and prepare the room following our Wine Cellar Construction Guide.
Ultimately, Genuwine seeks to pair with like-minded builders and contractors that appreciate and demand the level of attention that we bring to the table. We have two decades of experience seeing outside projects put together piecemeal that have ended up failing, to the detriment of:
a) the builder’s reputation,
b) potentially our reputation (if we supplied the racks only); and
c) more importantly, to the end-use client and their wine collection.
We strongly suggest that you give your wine cellar project the attention it demands. And we stand ready to help you in all aspects of it.