When Elaine and I launched Lady Hill, we wanted to do two things. Make excellent wine and build a space for gathering friends, family and visitors near and far--a place for lasting memories. As I invite you to visit the Winery built on my family’s 5th generation farm, I cannot help but think of a line from a favorite Robert Frost poem. The farmer in the poem is going out to clean a pasture spring and he invites another: “you come too.”
For me, it was important to build Columban Hall in the family tradition. The old machine shop built by Uncle Joe in the 1940s stood where the Hall now stands. It had no hope of surviving without a major restoration. It had been an important presence on the farm for decades, along with the old dairy barn, with its huge timbers and weathered, time-worn floors and walls. These buildings were the wonders of my childhood.
I believe a barn is the visual “soul” of a farm. It defines what a farm is all about. When I talked to the architect, I showed him pictures of signature barns that expressed proud farming traditions. He drew up plans for the new Tasting Hall--it was to stand in place of the old barn as a landmark and to echo architectural features found on the family homestead. We used fir boards saved from the old barn for the flooring on the second story. For me, it's not only a beautiful feature, it’s a reminder of where we come from, of what our ancestors worked to provide for us and what we can pass on to the next generation.
Perhaps it was architect Rod Merrick's application of the Golden Ratio in his plans that created the remarkable acoustics and transcendent light. The ratio, well known in the Classical world, is often found in nature and has been used for centuries as a guide to create harmonious, natural looking compositions in design work. Happily, this fulfilled our vision for Columban Hall as a venue for music, meetings, celebrations, and displays of art; what we like to call LIVE at Lady Hill.
Back to the wine. Wine has accompanied such gatherings and events since ancient times, and it's natural for it to do so now--now as much as ever. Whether we are in the heart of summer when the farm is in full production, or crisp, bright fall days, the patio is warm and inviting, the large glass doors create a natural flow from indoors to out. We are pleased to share Columban Hall and the accompanying portfolio of Lady Hill wines for gatherings either you create, or ones we are inspired to host; our spaces are your spaces.
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