90: Vermicomposting | Echolands Winery

59m 41s | 2024 Apr 12
In this episode, Cherise is joined by Wayne Van Loon, Principal, and Caitlin Poliak, Associate with Soderstrom Architects in Portland, Oregon. They discuss the Echolands Winery in Walla Walla, Washington.

Born from a vision by founder Doug Frost and Chairman Brad Bergman and designed in collaboration with Soderstrom Architects, Echolands Winery merges architectural splendor with operational prowess.

Production facilities will debut with a 27,000-square-foot winemaking facility and feature a spectacular hospitality center centered around a public tasting room, cantilevered over the winery grounds and outfitted with glass walls that offer a breathtaking view of the Blue Mountains.

You'll also hear about vermicomposting, and its use as a worm-powered winery process waste treatment.

The new winery is thoughtfully designed to balance aesthetics and functionality. It features distinctive massing and a concise material palette that includes insulated concrete walls, a mass timber roof structure, expansive glazing, and steel columns.

The production space is well-equipped with a large fermentation room, three barrel cellars, a covered crush pad, lab and offices. Notably, the primary barrel cellar is strategically integrated into the hillside, offering a thermally protected space ideal for wine aging.

The elevated tasting room affords breathtaking views of the surrounding vineyards and the Blue Mountains. Additional hospitality spaces include a private tasting room for an intimate experience, an underground wine library with a cave-like design featuring a site-sourced basalt accent wall, and a roof deck with a planted living roof providing panoramic views of the valley below and into the production spaces. This meticulously designed winery promises a harmonious blend of architectural elegance and operational efficiency.

Wayne Van Loon, Principal, Soderstrom Architects
Wayne is a Principal at Soderstrom with over 15 years of experience in the programming and design of wineries along the west coast.

In his role as Principal, Wayne collaborates closely with owners to translate their vision and production needs into an efficient and elegant design.

Prior to practicing architecture, Wayne spent ten years working for a small family winery in the Willamette Valley and several years owning and operating a hard cidery in Northern California.

His experience in all aspects of the industry, from production to marketing, gives him a deep understanding of winemakers’ needs and allows him to serve as a liaison between the worlds of wine and architecture.

Caitlin Poliak, Associate, Soderstrom Architects
Caitlin Poliak, an Associate at Soderstrom and a LEED Accredited Professional with 11 years of architectural expertise, has been an integral part of Soderstrom’s Wine & Spirits studio for the past five years.

As project manager, she has delivered outstanding projects to clients including Abbott Claim Winery, Portland Wine Co., and Freeland Spirits. Her most recent accomplishment is the Echolands Winery.
Photo Credit: Andrea Johnson


Cherise Lakeside, FCSI, CDT  image
Cherise Lakeside, FCSI, CDT
Senior Spec Writer | RDH Building Science
Wayne Van Loon image
Wayne Van Loon
Principal | Soderstrom Architects
Caitlin Poliak image
Caitlin Poliak
Associate | Soderstrom Architects