Live-Work Winery Offers New Take On Wine Country Living

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strawbale_1.jpgBy Courtney Cochran

Trends in so-called flexible design are revolutionizing the way we live, often with unexpected benefits. To wit, pre-fab homes now available from the likes of Method Homes combine sophisticated design, environmental efficiency and affordability into sleek ready-to-go housing models that can be installed just about anywhere, anytime. And now, at a time when the idea of building a new home and winery in wine country may seem as outsized as our nation's budget deficit, a pioneer in pre-fab is bringing flexibility and affordability to wine country living.
Efficiency, But Few Bells & Whistles
Billed as "an affordable way to develop your land," the groundbreaking new pre-fab Live-Work Winery is being made available by Berkeley-based Integrated Structures, Inc. and starts at an insanely low $38,000 (excludes construction costs). The bi-level structure - which boasts unparalleled fire and earthquake resistance, as well as above-average energy efficiency - encompasses 1,200 square feet of winery, storage or shop space on the ground level and an 1,200 additional square feet of living space above. As an added perk, full-service design firm ISI will even ready engineering and construction plans for approval, and has outlined a detailed road map for inhabitants to gain LEED green building certification.

To be sure, when it comes to looks the Live-Work Winery itself is far from the glitzy palaces, castles and mansions and that dot the countryside around California's more affluent wine regions. Even so, this wine country pre-fab merits a certain respect given its various efficiencies (which include a surprising lack of waste during build-out), as well as its minimalist price tag during a time when, well, those same palaces, castles and mansions seem more than just a touch in bad taste.

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