From the wine tasting sheet to the tasting room furniture, every part of your winery tasting room is an expression of your winery’s personality. Not to mention the personality of your wine. Wine tasting room design is a balance between functional and fashionable. It’s the place where the joy of wine mixes with the utility of a winery.
Finding your wine tasting room style is a vital part of starting a winery business. On the BinWise blog, we’ve talked about bar and restaurant style before. We’ve even talked about how to start a cocktail bar with design input. You can draw from those ideas. However, this look into wine tasting room design with wine marketing in mind will help you with the ultimate needs of a winery tasting space.
Wine Tasting Sheet: Start Simple
If you’re looking for the best place to start in orchestrating your tasting room, your wine tasting sheet is the way to go. The wine tasting sheet is the place for your guests to take notes on the wines, and give them something to take home to remember you and your wine by.
The basic needs for a wine tasting sheet are spaces for:
- Type of wine
- Tasting notes
- Overall impressions
- Date of the tasting
You can add design elements to make the sheet more visually attractive. The overall design is best kept simple, and a design that fits with the appearance of your winery.
Wine Tasting Room Furniture
Wine tasting room furniture is best suited by a functional design. The specific visuals, however, will be based on the aesthetic you have in mind. If you want a cozy, maximalist space, comfy couches and soft lighting will be a good place to start. If you’re going for something light and airy, wooden chairs and decorations inspired by nature work well.
There are places you can go for bulk ordering, but the best place to start is a furniture store walkthrough. You can also take a few trips to other wineries for inspiration. You’ll find your style piece by piece as you explore what works well together.
Wine Tasting Room Ideas
The wineries you’ve seen–in person or in online searches for winery design–have commonalities of functionality, wine appreciation, and customer service considerations. However, beyond those commonalities, each winery is unique. That means wine tasting room ideas cover a huge range.
While you’ll find inspiration in current winery tasting room spaces, your space will be completely unique to your winery. You’ll draw from design elements around the rest of your winery. You’ll also need to work with whatever space you have available for a tasting room. Putting your tasting room together is intrinsically linked to setting up the rest of your winery.
10 Wine Tasting Room Ideas
Even if you’ve already got an idea of what you want to do with your wine tasting room design, finding more inspiration is good. If you’re just starting out with design plans, finding ideas is paramount.
Wherever you’re at in the design process, we’ve got you covered. We’ve put together 10 of the best winery tasting room ideas.
Some of these will be classics. Some will be unique twists that will set you apart, or set you on another path of creativity in design. These wine tasting room design ideas will help you with your design plan no matter what stage you’re at.
10. Picture Windows
This tip comes into play for any winery tasting room that is underground. Often, wineries do put their tasting rooms down in the cool atmosphere of the cellars. If that’s the case for you, some designed picture windows are a way to give your guests a nicer view than just the ground.
You can design pictures of vineyard scenes or different wine regions. Then you can put them in frames around the room to take the place of windows.
9. Built-In Wine Racks
One facet of design vital to any tasting room is saving space. You only have so much room in any winery. Using a built-in wine rack in your tasting room and storage spaces will help you maximize your wine space.
For the tasting room, you can use alcoves to showcase the wines you offer in the tasting. You could even use them for empty bottles if you want to show off past vintages.
8. Watercolors with Wine
You may find that using watercolors is part of an interactive art night with your guests. This will give guests a familiar feeling to happy hour, especially if you pair it with happy hour deals. It's even similar to some Valentine’s day promotion ideas for restaurants. However, it doesn’t have to stop there. You can use watercolor paintings as designs on your wine tasting sheet, or as part of your picture windows.
For paint nights, you can give guests the chance to paint with wine (using common wine names is recommended). You can do the same for paintings, or even use wine-hued red paints.
7. Vine Designs
Bringing nature into the tasting room space is a surefire way to improve your design. What better in nature to include than grape vines? You’re already in the business of growing grape vines, you might as well use them for design as well as function. Some options for including vines in your design include:
- Keeping single vines in pots and maintaining them as plants
- Pinning fake vines across the ceiling as drapery
- Putting fake vines against the walls to give the impression of being within the vineyards
All these ideas will bring the outdoors in, and give your guests an all-inclusive experience.
6. Wine Barrel Tables
One way to combine design aesthetic with functionality is wine barrel tables. Wine barrels are the perfect size for small tables your guests can sit around for the tasting.
You can give them glass tops if you want wider tables. You can also have comically large wine barrels for this purpose. Whatever you choose, this is a good way to bring part of winemaking into the wine tasting process.
5. Wine Bottle Decorations
Of course, you’re already using wine-related decor in your tasting room and throughout the winery. How much are you using wine bottles themselves though? If the answer is not a lot, you should change that. Using wine bottles in a wine screen to create a stained-glass wall is artistic and beautiful. Creating a display to highlight key notes about the wines in your tasting introduces additional stages of the wine process. Using wine bottles can also answer questions like “How many glasses are in a bottle of wine?” Overall, it’s a way to enhance the whole tasting experience.
4. Space Within a Space
Creating cozy spaces within your tasting room is a good way to make it seem both open and cozy. This can mean small wine table spaces, comfy couches throughout the room, or small window seats by your picture windows.
It can mean whatever you’d like. There aren’t limits here, per se; it just comes down to creativity in creating warm spaces.
3. Wine Bottle Lighting
Wine bottle lighting gets its own mention on this list because it covers wine bottle decorations, excellent lighting, and cozy spaces. We’ve all seen the twinkle lights in wine bottles on Pinterest, Instagram, and everywhere else. You can use these wine bottle lighting displays on individual tables, or scattered around the room for ambiance.
2. Wine Wall
Creating a wine wall is another way of using wine bottles in your display, but on a much larger scale. Our favorite way of designing a wine wall is to build small individual shelves in a latticed design along your walls. The size should be enough for a bottle of wine on each shelf.
We recommend a small circular divot in the shelf to help keep the wine bottle in place. You can treat each bottle as a piece of art, with a tag to describe the wine being highlighted. You could even get creative with chalkboard paint on the wall, and a written-in-chalk description.
1. Wine Wheel
Coming in at number one is one of the most creative, tasting-inclusive design ideas. A wine wheel with wines from the tasting on each section of the wheel, can bring guests closer to the tasting process. You can offer guests a spin of the wheel to build the tasting as they go along.
This may be easier as a monthly offer with specific wines, or it could be a fun mini idea for every tasting. Either way, it’s a blast for bringing guests into the wine tasting world.
Winery Tasting Room Supplies
To make all those design ideas work, you’ll need some basic winery tasting room supplies. From furniture to wine bottle displays to wine glasses, the list can get pretty long. The basics are:
- Wine glasses
- Plastic cups
- Tasting food pairings
- Plates and napkins
- A podium or table
- Wine-related design elements
- Wine tasting sheets
- Pens and pencils
Beyond those supplies, what you’ll need depends on your specific wine tasting room design. Maybe you’ll include art supplies if you do tasting art nights. Perhaps you’ll offer wine for sale in the room, and need wine storage specifically for showcasing that wine for sale. You’ll figure it out as you create the wine tasting space.
Frequently Asked Questions About Wine Tasting Room Ideas
There’s a lot that goes into setting up a winery tasting room. From the design to the purchase of furniture and equipment to setting up a wine tasting sheet, there’s plenty you need to know. These frequently asked questions cover more ground. We've got answers about everything from the basics of wine tasting room profits to the inner workings of a wine tasting event.
Do Wine Tasting Rooms Make Money?
A wine tasting room can make money with wine sales, but it really depends on the winery. Most tastings do come with a price, ranging from $10 to about $40, with most falling in the middle of that range. Tastings can also lead to profit by guests purchasing some wine after the tasting.
What Are the Six Ss of Wine Tasting?
The six Ss of wine tasting are:
Yes, that’s right, we said spit. That last step isn’t required, but it is taken from the practice of sommelier wine tasters, who spit out the wine they taste. This occurs in professional wine tastings to avoid ingesting an extreme amount of wine. In casual wine tastings, if done in an outdoor setting, it can really add to the fun of the event.
What Is a Tasting Flight at a Winery?
A tasting flight is a selection of wine the winery can choose to include in a wine tasting event. Often, a flight will include a wide variety of wines produced at that winery. A flight can also include seasonal or limited edition wines that are exclusive to the tasting room experience.
What Are the Four Basic Elements of Wine Tasting?
The four basic elements of a wine tasting are appearance, bouquet, taste, and aftertaste. The six Ss of a wine tasting are wrapped up in these elements. Effectively, all these elements and steps come together to give you a way to fully appreciate the wine. They also provide structure if you’re working at a winery and leading a tour and tasting group.
Wine Tasting Room Ideas: A Checklist for Every Tasting
While your winery tasting room design plans are among the last things you’ll settle in your winery business plan needs, they’re extremely important. You could have a vineyard in the best climate for growing wine grapes. You could put together amazing winery weddings. Your winery could be top shelf. However, if your customers can’t come in and enjoy your wine in a great tasting room, you won’t have the best winery in that area.
Overall, a great tasting room is an integral part of an exceptional winery business. There’s plenty you need to work on besides the tasting room, but you can’t let the tasting room design plan fall by the wayside.