THE RESTORATION OF THE HISTORIC EQUIPMENT ON DISPLAY IN THIS CELLAR UNDERLINES THE DEEP RESPECT AND AFFECTION IN WHICH TRADITIONAL WINEMAKING METHODS ARE HELD AT NIKOLA ESTATE.
Much of this equipment dates from the turn of the century, although many of the items were still in use until comparatively recent times. Naturally over the years, equipment was often modified from the original as circumstances and winemaking requirements changed. The easier availability of power meant equipment originally designed for manual labour was adapted for either diesel or electric motor.
Research into the circumstances surrounding the purchase of this equipment (which looks so primitive by todays winemaking standards) demonstrates that the estate was often in vanguard of major technological changes in Australian winemaking, a major achievement by the winemakers of their time in the context of the great distances involved and limited communications available between them and the rest of the world.
The great oak casks that line the west wall of the cellar are of German origin and were installed at the estate last century. They are thought to have been brought full to Fremantle and when emptied, purchased for use here.
We are grateful to Jack Mann, Winemaker at Houghton from 1930 to 1971, for much of the information we have on the equipment displayed at Nikola Estate.