Similar to choosing a bottle of wine from the local bottle shop, picking a wine bar in Melbourne can be a daunting task. We've saved you some time and effort by selecting the nine wine bars in Melbourne that we think are the best. Bars can range from ultra-modern spaces to those that make you feel like you're hanging out in someone's living room, each offering its own distinct atmosphere and focal point. So, whether you're in the mood for an Italian red wine or something from the region, one of the wine bars here should have what you're looking for.
The capital of Victoria, Melbourne is one of the few cities in the world that deserves a stiff drink more than any other. Melbourne, Australia, and the state of Victoria, Australia, have been able to emerge from the crisis with the confidence that they have done enough to contain an outbreak that could have been catastrophic thanks to the heroic efforts of the people of Melbourne. This comes not long after the city made headlines around the world for the length of time it kept people inside due to the COVID-19 virus.
While locals have been raving about getting their beer on, and Premier Daniel Andrews has his sights set on the top shelf, we figured it would be prudent to scope out the best wine bars in the city to see what the city's sophisticated wine drinkers are raving about. Wineslinger has saved the day by creating an annual ranking of the best places to drink wine in Australia. Wineslinger compiled this list based on the opinions of several influential people in the Australian wine and hospitality industries.
The city of Melbourne features prominently on the overall list, proving that you won't have any trouble finding a good wine bar there. Fitzroy, Prahran, Brunswick, and the Central Business District (CBD) are just a few of the revitalised areas that now boast a plethora of restaurants and bars serving top-notch fare to complement their wine lists. Without further ado, the following addresses should be your first stops when searching for Melbourne's top wine bars.
Wine Venues In Melbourne
Underwood Wine Bar | Fitzroy North
Michael Underwood, the owner and sommelier, is committed to buying from and featuring local farmers and producers. To fulfil this promise, he has selected wines and beers from across the state to feature on a short but exciting drinks menu. Like the wine list, the charcuterie board features only products made in the area; in this case, each item on the board is made by a different local business. If you'd rather have something a little less fancy than a charcuterie board, try one of their delicious cheese toasties (the Grilled capsicum, cheese, and pesto is not to be missed if you do).
Bellota | South Melbourne
Located on Gertrude Street in Fitzroy, Marion is a bi-level restaurant. It is adjacent to Cutler & Co., one of Melbourne's most well-known dining establishments. Marion has one of the best wine lists in the city, with bottles representing some of the best regions and vintages from around the globe. Its industrial-style fit-out combines vintage and modern aesthetics in a way that is absolutely stunning, making it the kind of place where you might stop in for a glass of wine but leave with a bottle. We recommend that you make an effort to snag a table by the front windows so that you can soak up some rays and people-watch as you try out the different wines on offer. Keep in mind, though, that there could be intense competition for these seats.
Marion | Fitzroy
You can feel the friendly, easygoing vibe and genuine hospitality even before you set foot inside. Inside this cosy wine bar, you'll find low lighting, comfortable seating, and an array of small plates perfect for sharing. Some examples of tasty appetisers are smoked chilli mussel dip spread on a crisp chip or prawns doused in a spicy sauce. Two of the restaurant's most well-known dishes are the sourdough flatbread and the bucatini cacio e Pepe. Cutters are included with the flatbread order to facilitate communal eating. Liberty's extensive drink menu and friendly staff are reflections of the bar's welcoming atmosphere. The "boss's table" in the anteroom is perfect for intimate gatherings of up to six people.
When you grab a seat at the bar, you immediately become a part of the lively atmosphere that makes every passerby feel welcome. Intriguing dishes, such as sticky quail sweetened with curling slices of persimmon or roughed-up beetroots with dry ricotta, may emerge from the kitchen in the bolthole at the end of the bar. Spread out your orders, take a few drinks breaks, and keep a bowl of pickled peppers on the table at all times; service is fast. Although it's a bit of a jam, you should give it a try whenever you find yourself in Melbourne because it's the go-to spot for European cuisine.
You'll see the lively informality and sincere hospitality before you even walk in the door. Slink inside this small, spirited wine bar, and it's all dim and cosy with snacky, shareable food. You might start with mussel dip on a crisp chip or prawns doused with smoked chilli. Liberty classics include sourdough flatbread presented with scissors that make sharing a snip and bucatini cacio e Pepe. The exuberant drinks list and sensitive service underline Liberty's welcoming ethos. Book the 'bosses table' in the anteroom if you're in a small group.
It's hard not to feel smug when you've scored a barstool here, where you're part of a convivial tableau that's beckoning every passer-by. It's always worth seeing what the bolthole kitchen at the bar's end is conjuring: perhaps sticky quail sweetened with curling slices of persimmon or beetroots roughened up with dry ricotta. Service is swift, so stagger your order, take a few drink detours and keep a bowl of pickled peppers on the go. Melbourne's cornerstone of Euro-centric dining is a squeezable space, so a spontaneous drop-in is always worth a shot.
This sleeker bar, situated above the restaurant, was originally intended as a holding pen for the oversubscribed Cumulus Inc. Over time, however, it has developed into a popular spot for eating and drinking. Both the menu and the atmosphere of the public offering are the same whether you're dining on the first or second floor. Food and wine are both legal here because the venue is a wine bar. Since the bar's inception in 2013, the duck waffle topped with foie gras and prune puree has been a staple appetiser. Everything you'd expect from Cumulus Inc. is there, but with a more relaxed sophistication that sets it apart.
Many of Melbourne's best date spots have a dark, saloon-like interior design, complete with copper and brick accents and mismatched Art Deco lamps. Where would you rather eat, at a wine bar or a restaurant? Both of those statements are absolutely correct. Again, it takes you back to the days of Melbourne's dive bars, only this time the chairs are real and the Melbourne Bitter is a Kolsch. The wood-fired kitchen turns out some of the best roast chicken and bavette in town, but the vegetables really steal the show. Feel free to settle in and take advantage of the good times as they arise. Desserts combining fruit and dairy can be described as resembling a soft and jiggly passionfruit posset. The obligatory pickled cucumbers atop the whipped feta are just one example of how often these dishes are dressed with dairy.
If these walls could talk, you would hear all the wonderful tales that the knowledgeable locals and tourists who frequent this cosy wine bar have to tell. A curved bar with a running ladder is the focal point of the room, and it is topped with a daily menu that has been handwritten by an employee. It's like unexpectedly barging into someone's private home celebration. Seasonal dishes that pair well with alcoholic beverages are presented without pretension, such as molten eggplant with umami-rich sesame dressing, ready to be spread on sourdough. Save room for dessert; it's a chocolate pudding with a wonderfully soft centre and a slight crunch around the edges. For the same reasons that Geralds is considered a classic, this work deserves the title as well.
What kind of wine is served there? Is that a place to eat? You get everything listed here and more. It has a fantastic cellar, a smart-casual atmosphere, and deft, booze-savvy service, so in addition to a lush global offering, you can enjoy some excellent Victorian wines. The sum of these parts guarantees its triumph. However, it also serves as a restaurant. Not to mention, watch what you put in your body. If you needed a connecting theme, perhaps the emphasis on full flavours during peak production is it. Tender little buns are used to hold perfectly poached and cooked prawns, which are accentuated with horseradish. Meanwhile, the heat of chilli oil and the tang of basil bring out the best in summer tomatoes. Having trouble deciding what to eat? The "chef's selection" set menu is available to preorder for $65 or $85 and is meant to be shared amongst multiple diners.
Willows & Wine | West Melbourne
Willows & Wine is a wine bar and restaurant in West Melbourne, not far from the Queen Victoria Market. The shelves are stacked floor-to-ceiling with wine bottles and used books that have been neatly categorised. Feel free to grab a book and peruse it while you sip, and if you find that you can't put it down, there's no need to worry because they're all for sale. If you don't feel like reading, there's a large table in the common area with a selection of board games. Enjoy a glass of wine and a cheese board while sitting back and catching up with friends or family at Willows & Wine.
Milton Wine Shop
Although many of Melbourne's best wine bars can be found in the leafy northern suburbs of the city, Milton Wine Shop is the champion that the southern suburbs of Melbourne deserve. Malvern, to the south-east of Melbourne, is home to Milton, a wine shop and eatery. They stock a wide variety of wines, perfect for sipping in the shop or taking home.
Biodynamic, natural wines made without the use of chemicals or other additives are a particular favourite. Despite their slightly higher price, natural wines are worth trying because of the widespread belief that they reduce the likelihood of a hangover (though this is still dependent on how much you drink, of course). The "no wine snobbery" policy enforced by the bartenders at Milton Wine Shop allows customers to feel comfortable asking questions and exploring new flavours without fear of judgement.
City Wine Shop
While City Wine Shop has the air of a high-end bottle shop, its focus is on serving customers in the store. The shop's plush, wood-lined interior is the perfect place to enjoy any of the 800 bottles that line the walls and chill in the store's refrigerators.
Old Palm Liquor
The Neighbourhood, previously described, has a new sibling establishment, Old Palm Liquor, located in the same building. It has a menu that is inspired by South Africa, a wood-burning grill, and over 400 wines, most of which are natural.
The Neighbourhood is an 80s-themed restaurant that stands on the site of a former "gentleman's" club, or gambling den, frequented by criminals. The wine list at this eatery is over 500 items long and favours minimal interventionist wines.
There is a wine shop/bar hybrid in the Alps called an Enoteca that focuses on wines from the areas surrounding the Alps. The City Wine Shop and Gertrude Street Enoteca are two other local establishments that offer similar services. While there are international wines available, the 400-bin wine list also features local offerings that can be enjoyed on the spot or taken home.
In my opinion, Melbourne is one of the few cities that merits a stiff drink more than any other. Different bars can have vastly different atmospheres, from sleek and contemporary to cosy and homey. We at Wineslinger have researched and compiled a list of the top wine bars in Melbourne. The eatery and the surrounding South Yarra community share a modern, minimalist aesthetic. One of the city's top wine lists can be found at Marion.
The charcuterie board, like the wine list, only includes local products. Tetto, a new rooftop cocktail bar, is where you want to be to kick off any good time. Its upper and lower levels are equally well-liked by customers for their food and drink offerings. Because it is a wine bar, both food and wine are permitted. The best places to take a date in Melbourne are dimly lit and decorated like a saloon.
Roast chicken and bavette cooked in a wood-burning oven are among the best in town. Gerald's Bar features a curved bar and an active ladder. The Willows & Wine is a restaurant and wine bar located in Melbourne's West. You can find Milton Wine Shop in Melbourne's southern suburbs. To the south-east of Melbourne is Malvern, where you'll find the wine shop and restaurant known as Milton.
Bottles of wine and old books fill the shelves to the very top. The "no wine snobbery" policy at Milton Wine Shop encourages customers to try new wines and styles without worrying about being judged. Formerly a "gentleman's" club or gambling den frequented by criminals, The Neighbourhood is now an 80s-themed restaurant.
- Choosing a wine bar in Melbourne can feel as daunting as selecting a bottle of wine from the local bottle shop.
- We've narrowed your options down to nine of Melbourne's finest wine bars so you don't have to.
- Melbourne, Victoria's capital, is one of the few places in the world that merits a stiff drink more than any other.
- Wineslinger has come to the rescue by compiling a list of the best wine bars in Australia every year.
- Melbourne's prominence on the overall list demonstrates that a pleasant wine bar can be easily located in that city.
- The proprietor, sommelier Michael Underwood, is dedicated to supporting and showcasing regional growers and manufacturers.
- To deliver on this pledge, he has curated a short but exciting drinks menu that features wines and beers from all over the state.
- The charcuterie board, like the wine list, is comprised entirely of regionally produced goods, with each component produced by a different company.
- The couple is named Fitzroy and Marion.
- Marion has one of the city's best wine lists, featuring vintages and regions from all over the world.
- The Carolina Bar is the name of a popular watering hole in the Tar Heel State.
- The warm and inviting vibe of Liberty is reflected in the bar's extensive drink selection and helpful staff.
- This swankier bar, perched above the eatery, was supposed to be a holding cell for the oversubscribed Cumulus Inc. However, it has become a popular place to eat and drink in recent years.
- The best bars in Melbourne often evoke the feel of a classic saloon with their dim lighting, exposed brick walls, and assortment of Art Deco lamps.
- Should I take you to a wine bar or a restaurant?
- You'll feel like you're back in a dive bar in Melbourne, except this time the chairs are real and the beer is a Kolsch instead of Melbourne Bitter.
- If only the walls of this cosy wine bar could convey the wealth of information and experience shared by the locals and visitors who frequent it.
- Western suburbs wine bar and restaurant Willows | Melbourne, Australia.
- West Melbourne's Willows & Wine is a wine bar and restaurant not far from the Queen Victoria Market.
- At Willows & Wine, you can relax with a glass of wine and a cheese board while catching up with loved ones.
- Even though many of Melbourne's top wine bars are located in the city's leafy northern suburbs, Milton Wine Shop is the undisputed champion of Melbourne's southern suburbs.
- We're big fans of biodynamic, natural wines that aren't altered in any way by chemicals or additives.
- It features a South African-inspired menu, a wood-burning grill, and more than 400 wines, the vast majority of which are organic.
- regional wine
- Formerly a "gentleman's" club or gambling den frequented by criminals, The Neighbourhood is now an 80s-themed restaurant.
- In the Alps, you can find Enoteca, a combination wine shop and bar that carries primarily wines from the regions surrounding the Alps.
- Also in the area are the City Wine Shop and the Gertrude Street Enoteca, both of which provide the same or similar services.
FAQs About Melbourne
However, to make sure you enjoy that kind of wine experience, you need to choose the right wine bar. Try looking for a wine bar with a large selection of great wines, a welcoming and upscale atmosphere, and food to complement their wines. And consider coming to PINSTACK.
Bellota Wine Bar chef Nicky Riemer grew up surrounded by hospitality: her father was a hotelier and passed on his love of food to his daughter.
A wine bar is a tavern-like business focusing on selling wine, rather than liquor or beer. A typical feature of many wine bars is a wide selection of wines available by the glass. In addition, some wine bars are profiled on wines of a certain type of origin, such as Italian wine or Champagne.
Wine Bar Profit Margin
You can expect a net profit margin of around 7–10% for a wine bar. Just a little less than a standard bar. That's because you'll likely be selling more wine bottle retail than you'll be serving at the bar. In addition, the wine itself has a higher average pour cost than beer and liquor pour cost.
A serious wine bar has a minimum of 25 wines available by the glass and takes you from dry to sweet and from Champagne to Port.
Red Wine Should Be Served Cool — 60 to 70 degrees.
To cool red down to its proper temperature, we like to place it in the fridge an hour before serving it. However, you can put it in the freezer for just 15 minutes for quicker results.
Just as you store open white wine in the refrigerator, you should refrigerate red WineWine after opening. Beware that more subtle red wines, like Pinot Noir, can start turning "flat" or tasteless fruit-driven after a few days in the refrigerator.
Open bottles are held in glass-fronted cases, and each bottle is attached to a fixture. As the dispenser siphons wine from the bottle, an inert gas such as nitrogen or argon fills the space, keeping oxygen out. As a result, the dispensers keep wines at ideal serving temperatures for whites and reds.