Chappellet Barrel Chai

Situated on the rocky slopes of Pritchard Hill in St. Helena, Chappellet Vineyards envisioned a barrel chai that created a multi-sensory journey in winemaking and aesthetic appeal. Our team at Centric worked together with Chappellet to build a structure designed for wine storage and aging. The barrel chai naturally blends into the site’s beautiful, majestic surroundings in a way that minimizes the impact to the environment. A majority of the structure is underground to reduce heat gain through exterior walls.




Chappellet Vineyards

The roof is insulated to R-48 and the aboveground exterior walls are insulated to R-42. Approximately 77% of the roof is clad with solar panels, which help to cool the building by shading the roof. The chai achieves nearly zero net-energy use, due to high-energy efficiency and electrical production from the photovoltaic system. All heating systems are powered by electricity, not gas. The visible, above-ground portion of the building uses unfinished recycled-steel panels, which will eventually patina to blend in with the agricultural surroundings.

Martin Design

Michael Wilk Architects


WilkArch has managed numerous projects and project types including hospitality, commercial tenant improvement and multi-family ground up construction.