The old Houghton’s winery has been reinvigorated under new owners and rebranded Nikola Estate. Part of that new look is the recently opened Nikola Estate winery restaurant. Sitting under vines, or shady pergolas, looking out over the extensive lawns and gardens of this historic estate, sampling the new wine range and the café style food on offer, is a very pleasant way to spend an afternoon in the Swan Valley.
At the moment only 4 wines are available – Vermentino, Chardonnay, Semillon/Sauvignon Blanc and Shiraz – but more are in barrels and waiting to be bottled and added to the list. In any event the Vermentino is a lovely wine, full of zesty citrus aromas and flavours and certainly matched well with our food choices.
Fried squid rings, crisped and crunchy coat, was served with a drizzle of smoked squid ink, spicy ssamjang adding a mild chilli hit, and a salad with honey, yuzu and daikon. A great light and fresh dish.
The fish of the day, two generous fried fillets, came with green salad, balsamic dressing and house made tartare. Again a well turned out and enjoyable plate.
The final dish, juicy gnocchi, along with poached mushroom, sitting in a jus of pumpkin, topped with fried sage and kale leaves, also hit all the right notes. Perfect vineyard fare.
The menu is well priced and has a well put together selection of dishes, including some just for the kids – who seem, from our observations, to enjoy running around the lawns.
Nikola Estate promises to maintain the role of these beautiful grounds as a must-see in the Valley. Good food, good wine, great location.