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Phifer Pavitt winery is
Phifer Pavitt winery is a masterclass in repurposing materials with style. Right: owner Suzanne Phifer Pavitt I ’m sitting in jeans made of plastic bottles, on a car seat made partly of plastic bottles. En route to Napa Valley to seek out a revolution in sustainable architecture, it seems only fitting I dress for the occasion. Momentum is building for the circular economy and California is at its vanguard. Silicon Valley tech entrepreneurs, government tsars and business visionaries are tipping the scales in favour of intelligent re-use of resources through design. And where Silicon Valley goes, the rest of the world follows – starting with Napa Valley. I’m headed out in a Range Rover Evoque to the Silverado Trail, 29 miles of idyllic country road linking the towns of Napa and Calistoga – a route infinitely prettier than its busier counterpart, Highway 29, and an impeccably smooth drive. As I leave San Francisco on the north side of the bay, the mist shrouding the Golden Gate Bridge dissipates, crisp sunlight dominates and the temperature soars. In the spirit of resource reduction, I reject icy aircon in favour of open windows. Within an hour the landscape ripens into rich greens and feathery grasses backlit by the sun. Wild rose bushes and cypress trees border the rolling vineyards, along with frequent penalty signs for littering and one that says ‘You had me at Merlot’. The air is earthy and sweet. The contrast from central San Francisco to this Arcadian dream within just an hour’s drive is striking, but also part of what makes Napa Valley so successful. This is the largest agricultural area close to a major city in the US; designated an Agricultural Preserve in the late ’60s, the land is protected from development. Its proximity to the resources, technology, values and fluid population of the Bay area make for a potent mix, and I’m curious to discover if this is behind the increasingly innovative approach being taken by Californian vintners. First stop, the Phifer Pavitt winery near Calistoga. Coasting beneath regal oaks, it’s hard to believe I’m less than 90 minutes from the urban clatter. The tasting room sits cosily in a shady hillside nook and I could not have been made to feel more welcome. Suzanne Phifer Pavitt, the eponymous proprietor and driving force behind the winery’s design, credits her simple farm upbringing in Georgia for her commitment to sustainability. “I hate waste,” she says. “I grew up being very resourceful, that’s how my parents were. But I also don’t want something new, I want something that’s had a life, that has a story.” Suzanne’s own previous life was in 61
Land Rover Magazine showcases stories from around the world that celebrate inner strength and the drive to go Above and Beyond.
In this issue, New Defender is put through its paces by two inspirational young adventurers as they prepare for an expedition to the South Pole. We also celebrate 50 years of Range Rover by taking a journey of discovery to Dubai. As well as looking back, we look to future as a group of visionaries explain the technologies that could change the future for all of us.