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Projects > California Wine Caves

Shotcrete underground wine caves are "in"... Featured in a story in the Wall Street Journal in December and in several other publications. The efficiencies and cost savings and mystique of underground wine storage have finally come into their own. Shotcrete Technologies, Inc. has been part of this new/old tradition by working with several contractors in California wine country since 1985.

The high cost of "surface" land and the cost of keeping constant temperatures year round for wine storage have driven vintners underground. Like the Europeans who centuries ago fermented wine in caves, the Californians have learned that there is nothing better than a cool damp cellar for aging wine. Not to mention that recent regulations in the area prohibit further above ground construction.

Building underground storage is nearly two thirds cheaper than building an equivalent facility on the surface. Fully finished, fitted with all necessary drainage, power supply, water supply, plumbing, and lighting, can be built for about one hundred dollars a square foot as opposed to two to three hundred dollars per square foot for a surface structure.

Wine storage underground means cost savings other than construction. The fermenting wine evaporates at a much slower rate, and averages approximately a 3 gallon per barrel a year savings.

The average storage tunnels are horseshoe shaped with a "cave-like" tasting room. The cellars may resemble medieval banquet rooms, catacombs, or gothic dungeons. Pigment is often added to the shotcrete to blend in with the natural rock.

Shotcrete Technologies has supplied products to contractors on over 100 wine caves in the area with our SHOT-SET 250 accelerator, ST-ALKALI Free Accelerator, Robotic spraying arms, and nozzles. The next time you visit the California Wine country, explore the underground world of the wine caves.