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First planted in 1980, Cave B Winery is a boutique vintner located in the Columbia Valley wine region in the very center of Washington State. While growing a broad range of varietals - made possible by the microclimates of its distinctive cliffside location 900 feet above the Columbia River - the winery also focuses on sustainability in its buildings and operations. The placement of the multiple buildings on the site and their organization were informed by topographical and geological conditions on the site, particularly the basalt cliffs, and rocky outcroppings and talus. Stone for the green buildings was harvested on-site and cast into concrete forms - the walls of the Inn at Cave B, are made of composite, hand-fabricated panels of concrete, basalt and sand. Designed by Olson Kundig Architects of Seattle, the multi-phase project, is comprised of the Cave B Inn, Lodge and 15 guesthouses at Sagecliffe Winery, surrounded by estate vineyards and orchards.
Building & Construction
In Cave B Inn's Cavern Rooms, geo-thermics are used to heat and cool the building. The water coming from the deep well is 72 degrees year round; that temperature is utilized in the HVAC system for the building, reducing the need for electric power. Salvaged railroad tie flooring is used for the Cave B Inn lobby and Tendrils Restaurant. Trellis poles in the pool area of Cave B Inn are reused Grant County telephone poles, made available when the county undertook a pole-replacement process in 2007. A local ironsmith created the grand lobby chandelier in Cave B Inn from recycled farm machinery. The roof of the wine cave is a living “sod” roof, which insulates the cave, is an oxygen-producing structure, and upholds our goal of architecture which emerges from the environment, as opposed to dominating the environment. The walls of all buildings, as well as walkways, patios, stairways and landscaping walls, have been built from basalt rock culled from the property and the immediate region.
Cave B's Grapes Recycled for Cattle Feed
Grape Pomace (pronounced /PUHM-is/) is the solid remains of grapes after pressing. It contains the skins, pulp, seeds, and stems of the fruit. It is typically used as cattle feed, a soil conditioner, or sent to a landfill. Cave B Estate Winery and Ovenell Farms of Quincy, Washington, have partnered to use the winery’s grape pomace. Ovenell Farms accepted all of Cave B Estate Winery's grape pomace in 2009 for use in its cattle feed. After Cave B's harvest and crush season came to an end in early November 2009, Ovenell Farms received more than 100 tons of winery by-product, which made up approximately 20 percent of the feed composition for its Washington State dairy cows. Ovenell Farms, is also working with Cave B in the area of soil enhancement in another synergistic pairing between a winery and a dairy farm.
Seasonal, Regional Foods
The restaurant chef uses seasonal, regional foods, with sustainable, organic local ingredients whenever possible, including the chef's own garden herbs, vegetables and fruits.
School Garden Program
The SageCliffe School Garden Program offers children a "hands-on" learning experience. For the program’s launch, more than 170 first-graders from Quincy's Mountain View Elementary School visited on Earth Day, 22 April 2009. The goal of the program is to allow students to learn about the importance of "eating locally", how to grow food organically, and then to see how that harvest can be prepared to provide delicious, healthful meals. Children plant their own plot in the Chef's Garden and learn about heirloom vegetables from the chef.
Food and Beverage Services
For all events, Cave B Inn uses reusable cutlery, dishware and linens instead of disposables, and bulk containers for condiments, instead of individual condiment packets. The organic chef's garden produces a wide variety of fruits, vegetables and herbs, used regularly in its restaurant's dishes. SageCliffe Verjus is a winemaking bi-product extracted from hand-picked unripe wine grapes which have been gently crushed, then gravity-pressed; it is bottled and used as a marinade or dressing. Waste cooking oil from the restaurant is converted into bio-diesel fuel.
Reducing, Reusing and Recycling
Cave B Winery sells its green glass bottles to The Green Glass Company, http://www.greenglass.com/ which recycles the wine bottles to make glasses and goblets that are sold in the winery store, coming full circle. Cave B sold 5,000 of its green glass wine bottles to The Green Glass Company in 2007. The vineyard also sells Vineyard Chips that are 3lb. bags of chipped grapevine clippings used as a cooking fuel or for added smoked flavor while grilling. The vineyard holds post-pruning Grapevine Gathering Days where local crafters are invited to gather just-pruned grapevines for use in crafts & home and garden décor. Wine case boxes and packing material are recycled or re-used for customer wine purchases, and the winery recycles cardboard, glass and paper. Kitchen food waste, winemaking bi-product (grape seeds and skins) and vineyard, orchard and garden yard waste are composted.
Meetings & Events
The winery gives preference to meeting planners who strive to follow green meeting practices. and follows its own Green Meeting Guide. Its primary vendor for printed materials, PrintingForLess.com, is a 100% wind-powered facility that employs recycling, soy-based inks, and Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) Chain of Custody Certification to guarantee that all paper used comes from sustainable, well managed forests that adhere to strict environmental standards.