Houghton’s history includes tales of pioneer Scots, bandits, long-term friendships and a “passing down of winemaking craft.”
Three army officers first bought the land in Western Australia’s Swan Valley in 1836. In 1937 the estate became known nationwide when winemaker, Jack Mann, created Houghton White Burgundy.
Today the legendary Jack Mann Cabernet Sauvignon is regarded as one of Australia’s finest Cabernets. It is the country’s third oldest operating winery, and one of the most awarded – winning over 250 Trophies and 4,700 medals in the past three decades. This year they celebrate their 185th anniversary.
Houghton and sources fruit from every major premium grape-growing region in WA, including Gingin, Margaret River, Frankland River and Mount Barker in the Great Southern, and the emerging Pemberton region.
The Justin Vineyard in the Frankland River region of Western Australia is used to produce the Icon Jack Mann Cabernet Sauvignon. This region is characterised by cool winters, warm summer days and cool summer nights.
The soils at Frankland River are degraded granite gravels that are some of the oldest in the world. The Cabernet grapes for this wine are hand harvested from a small patch of 46 year-old vines. The particular clone of Cabernet Sauvignon is an original Houghton clone selected by Jack Mann.
The winery is named after one of its first owners – Lieutenant Colonel Richmond Houghton, who started producing wine early with its first commercial vintage – a modest 25 gallons, in 1859.
The late, great Jack Mann, was the Houghton Winemaker from 1922 to 1973. Jack have a huge influence on the development of the Western Australian wine industry but his commitment to quality and integrity still has an influence on winemakers today.
“I love making all our wines from producing a fresh and consistent Houghton White Classic year in and year out to making the beautifully complex Icon wines like Gladstones Cabernet Sauvignon“ Courtney Treacher
Courtney was appointed senior winemaker in 2020, fifteen years after originally joining the team as a Cellar Hand in 2004. Courtney studied a Bachelor of Science (Viticulture and Oenology) at Western Australia’s Curtin University of Technology and first put her studies into practice in vineyards across the Perth Hills and Swan Valley and then at Redgate Wines in Margaret River.
In 2007, Courtney was appointed winemaker for Moondah Brooke, and was a scholar at the prestigious Len Evans Tutorial in 2011. She is also a judge at the Perth, Adelaide and Melbourne Royal Wine Shows. Today Courtney brings her passion for Western Australia’s grape varieties and terroir in (modern) line with the heritage that the great Jack Mann helped establish 185 years ago.