Vintech Products


Spreading Popularity Of "Complete Press"

Michael Glover standing alongside his 
VT5000 Vintek Press at Oakvale Estate, Hunter Valley

Local winepress manufacturer, Vintek, expanded sales of its new complete press range to even more winemaking regions this vintage.

The term 'complete press' refers to the removable loading hopper and portable mark removal conveyer belt which makes it a processing system, not just a conventional winepress.

Vintek says the latest model features further technical advancements over last years model, including a new design door membrane, tank membrane and hinged screen arrangement.

Michael Glover, winemaker of Oakvale Estate, in the Hunter Valley, said he was 'rapt' with his new VT5000 machine.

"It was new for me as, for the first time, I had to manage the whole operation since moving from Rothbury Estate.  From winemaker to maintenance man, I had to do the lot," Glover said.

"Generally, in a winery when something doesn't work you freak out,
 Glover said.  "Luckily, this wasn't an issue for the Vintek press, but it was reassuring to know that help was only a phone call away and, failing that, I had the ability to utilise the manual override designed into the machine for such a situation.  It's so simple to understand, you can't go wrong."

When asked about the processing capability of the VT5000, Glover said free run amounts were much higher than what he had experienced with other imported machines.  "I put five tonnes of whole bunch Chardonnay in with room to spare, 16 1/2 tonnes of crushed destemmed Chardonnay and 16 tonnes of fermented reds, because that was all I had.  If I wanted to, I could have put over 20 tonnes into it!

"We also tried the rotary fermenting features of the VT5000 and it produced one of the best batches in the winery.  I have to rethink how we do things in the future."

Glover also commented that the Vintek rotary fermenting process produced 'Rotovat' characters with up-front primary fruit.  "The wine looked classically Rotovat," he said.

"I started looking for a 10-tonne press but soon discovered I could get a similar yield out of the smaller local press.  The service was superb and if I do need a 10-tonne press I won't accept that Vintek doesn't have one in the range; I'll ask the company to make one anyway," Glover said.

Peter Stanlake, of Hayshed Hill Vineyard, in Western Australia, was another new winemaker to experience the VT5000, having first seen a Vintek press at the Margaret River Field Day in May 1999.

"First, the service was very, very good.  Having the production manager of Vintek there for a week at the start of the vintage providing training was a great help to us," Stanlake said, adding that the training and after-sales service provided by Vintek was "10 out of 10".

"This is a really well-built machine with a nice big area of screen surface that produced very good juice quality.  Even Semillon didn't produce any problems for us," he said.

Vintek has recently made changes to the screen attachment method through the use of a hinge arrangement.  Although predominately self-cleaning, the screens can now be lifted and cleaned without removal from the press.

from The Australian Grapegrower & Winemaker June/July 2000


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