Best Small List (100)

SPICE TEMPLE, NSW

Spice Temple

10 Bligh St, Sydney, NSW
(02) 8099 7088
spicetemple.com.au

CUISINE Chinese
WINE LIST Justin Crawford
WINEs ON LIST 100 (22 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($75-$11 by the glass)

The food at Spice Temple is Neil Perry at his Chinese best. The 100 wines on the list are carefully chosen with that food in mind and a strict policy that as one wine comes in, one exits.

There are plenty of bubbles, riesling and whites: the reds are dominated by rosé, gamay and pinot noir, while tending to avoid full-bodied expressions of shiraz and cabernet.

It’s an international list with roughly half coming from Australia and half from overseas. These latter are impossible to categorise except perhaps ‘international eclectic’. There are different styles of riesling, chenin, sauvignon and chardonnay, plus single examples of countless different white varietals and a few blends.

It’s a similar situation with reds. Some are from established producers while many are cutting edge or new
wave producers.

It’s the quality of the selection that sets this list apart and makes it a worthy winner of this important award.

Peter Forrestal

Finalists

Cho Cho San

73 Macleay St, Potts Point
(02) 9331 6601
chochosan.com.au

CUISINE Japanese
WINE LIST Sam Christie
WINEs ON LIST 84 (14 by the glass)
WINE PRICES$$$ ($19-14? by the glass)

Japanese restaurants need Japanese drinks, and Cho Cho San brings a diverse selection of strong options beyond wine. There is creativity in the matches, every wine a considered choice, especially with the light-bodied white wines.

Lee Ho Fook

11-15 Duckboard Place, Melbourne
(03) 9077 6261
leehofook.com.au

CUISINE Chinese
WINE LIST James Cranfield
WINEs ON LIST 93 (17 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($34-$13 by the glass)

A cracking list that does justice to the phrase ‘something for everyone’, with a well-rounded offering that jumps from pint-sized natural wine producers through to totems of classic, fine wine. You’ll find hits from benchmark Andrew Thomas next to stately Champagne Egly-Ouriet alongside Western Australia hero La Violetta; local wines roll deep, from the regal Yeringberg through to super talent Billy Button. It’s a list that meshes really well with the food menu, offering bright, lighter wine styles as the mainstay. There’s a wealth of great drinking here and an eye on approachability, with the familiar found anchored among lesser-known. Around all this, the list looks great as a document, well laid out and using excellent elements of design. Nice one, Lee Ho Fook.