From concrete-floored urban wineries to opulent Parisian-style brasseries and Italian enotecas, Melbourne's wine bar boom hasn't slowed in 2020.
Winemaker Gary Mills quietly opened Jamsheed Urban Winery in a huge warehouse in Preston just before Christmas last year. Alongside his smashable, minimal-intervention drops, such as the pink and fizzy Candy Flip, the citrus-tinged Lemon Haze and the burgundy-coloured Sagrantino Rosé, he pours beers from Hop Nation, 8 Wired Brewing and Three Ravens, and Balcombe gin. As of this week, Pizza Romance will be serving pizza from a portable woodfire oven.
In late March, Hemingway's Wine Room is set to open at 150 Wellington Parade, East Melbourne. Inspired less by the American novelist and more by the period of opulence he was prolific during, co-owner Glen Bagnara hopes the 70-seat brasserie and wine bar will be "a cross between France Soir and the City Wine Shop". Detailed seafood plates will meet French bistro classics plus an extensive wine list, with about 25 options from home and abroad ranging from $12 to $60 by the glass.
Later this year, the D'Anna family, behind Balwyn's Boccaccio empire, will open Enoteca Boccaccio above their supermarket and cellar strip on Burke Road. It's been on the agenda since they redeveloped five years ago, but being in a dry area, "it's taken us two-and-a-half years just to get the liquor licence," says Anthony D'Anna. When it opens, it'll serve Italian wine, beer, smallgoods and cheese. There will even be an on-site cheesemonger maturing cheese solely for the enoteca.
Jamsheed, open from Wed-Thu, 5-9pm; Fri 5-11pm; Sat 2-11pm, Sun 2-9pm at 4 Albert Street, Preston, jamsheed.com.au; Hemingway's, 150 Wellington Parade, East Melbourne, hemingwayswineroom.com.au; Enoteca Boccaccio boccaccio.com.au.