The Building of State Wine Warehouse in Minsk
Architecture, Industrial buildings
The building designed for the state wine warehouse in Minsk was erected at the turn of the 19th century. The warehouse itself has been located in the building since 1898.
The state warehouse is part of the former distillery founded by the brothers Rakovshchik whose building was situated across the road. Initially after foundation in 1893 it produced only alcohol and yeast. However in a couple of years the range of the production of Samuil and Faivish Rakovshchik`s distillery was widened and got all the possible awards at that time as Minsk trade mark «BR.Rakovschikov» and became world-famous. The secret of success was quite simple: focusing on the top quality of the product. After a while the plant got the title of the supplier of alcohol to the Court of His Imperial Majesty. Up to now people can recall top quality vodka called «Ochishtchennaya». It is alleged to have been very transparent enabling to admire diamond shine in the sunlight through it. In the year of 1911 the production of the plant was recognized outside the Russian Empire when it had won the grand prize at the exhibition in Rome.
The history of the building of the state wine warehouse follows the plant`s main building history: after the revolution of 1917 it housed alcohol warehouse, since 1925 it had functioned as a spirit and vodka distillery, in 1937 it was converted into an alcoholic beverage distillery. In 1958 a winery started to operate there and in 1959 the yeast plant complemented the production. As the result of the plants` fusion the yeast wine factory appeared. Since 1964 and right up to now the building of the plant and warehouse has belonged to Kristall enterprise. Kristall Winery and Distillery carries on secular traditions of producing high-quality alcoholic beverages and making Belarusian wares very popular beyond the bounds of USSR.
The buildings of the plant and the state wine warehouse are built of red brick. The regulations of the building process demanded the constructions to be durable, cost-efficient and qualitative.
A two-storey fasade of the building is asymmetrical. The angular part has the form of a tower with hipped roof built as a result of increase the height of the third floor. The tower walls end with a denticular cornice. Arch-and-pier system is the basis of the decorative motif of the façade. The window opening in the middle of the second floor is decorated with a bow-shaped pediment and lacerated cornice.
The part of the building opposite the tower is stressed with narrow risalite and looks like a three-storey tower. The façade between angular parts is cut by rectangular window openings crowned with pediments and flat bays. Inner layout of the building was of corridor-type. The main building of the distillery is characterized by the traits of the modernist style.
The building of the state wine warehouse is essential point of many tourist routes. It is the evidence both of the past glory of legendary dwellers of Minsk and a success of modern Belarusian industry.