What Equipment Do You Need for a Small Winery?

What Equipment Do You Need for a Small Winery?

Running a winery can be a dream job. Owning it can be even better. But while the perks may be great, there’s a lot of work that goes into turning grapes into wine. There’s also a lot of specialized equipment that is necessary for each step of the process. That also means, if you’re planning to operate a small winery, you’ll need professional winery equipment installation.

There are many steps to making wine, and each requires specific tools. Some of these tools touch the grapes or wine itself, like wine tanks, and some do not, like refrigeration systems.

Here’s a look at some of the equipment needed for a small winery.

Climate control

If you’ve ever toured a winery, you may have noticed that the area where the wine is stored is a little chilly. It may have even been inside a cave. That’s because wine needs very specific climate control for the process of fermentation and aging to allow for the most desirable results. A good refrigeration system is key for keeping wine at optimum temperature, especially during the aging process.


Once the grapes are picked, they need to be destemmed and crushed to release the juice. There are a few different types of machines that do this. A crusher-destemmer and a destemmer-crusher each handle both of these jobs, but in different orders. Crusher-destemmers are less expensive, though they can be less efficient. Since they crush first, there is also the possibility of undesirable flavors from the juice running over the stems.

Wine press

Pressing the grapes is an iconic part of the winemaking process. Some traditions include grapes being stomped by human feet, but machine presses are much more efficient. These machines exert pressure on the grapes to get the juice out without crushing the seeds, which would result in unwanted tannins finding their way into the flavor. Small wineries may want to consider a smaller unit like a basket or bladder press.

Wine tanks

After the juice is extracted, it will need to be put into acid-resistant containers called wine tanks. These can be stainless steel, concrete or wood and can be different sizes or shapes to make the best use of your space. There are basically two types of tanks: one for storing the mash and one used for fermentation. For a small winery, tanks with volumes ranging between 1,000 and 3,000 liters should work fine. They will each need pressure regulators, cooling and heating systems, insulation, agitators and mash plungers.

Pumps and byproduct containers

Finally, no winery equipment installation is complete without wine pumps to transfer the wine to different containers. These pumps are also essential for transferring byproducts like wastewater into containers for proper disposal. These pumps need to be strong enough to handle thicker substances than just water.

When you need winery equipment installation, along with reliable maintenance and repair service, get in touch with the experienced professionals at American Refrigeration Inc. Call today to arrange a consultation—we look forward to working with you!