Sumac Ridge, Summerland
While home wine cellars can be quite modest, the needs of a wine-oriented
restaurant places greater demands on both the amount of space needed and the
level and stability of the temperature and humidity.
In the case of Zias Stonehouse Restaurant in Summerland the situation could
hardly be better. The restaurant is built around a hand crafted stone house that
the Summerland Heritage Society designated as an official heritage building
in 1988. The home itself was built by the Biagioni family in 1916, and first
became a restaurant about 50 years later. In 1998 the Ferlizza family
imaginatively created an outstanding restaurant after working a full year to
restore the stone house and then complement it with additional space and a
well equipped kitchen. Soaring skylights illuminate the stone walls that are
now part of the restaurantís interior creating an almost courtyard atmosphere.|
Now to the cellar. In the best Italian tradition, the Biagioni family built the basement to, among other things, accommodate winemaking and storage, and Manager Shannon Ferlizza said that winemaking implements were found when they renovated it, as well as doors wide enough to allow barrels to be easily moved inside and out. To prepare the underground room for its role as a functioning restaurant wine cellar, wooden bunks were built along several walls, accommodating Zias wide range of primarily British Columbia wines. While handy to the restaurant floor, the cellar provides stable temperatures and humidity year round. The unusual and charming part is that Zias Stonehouse Restaurant enjoys a spacious heritage wine cellar that was built for the purpose in 1916!