Victoria Winner

The Botanical

The Botanical

169 Domain Rd, South Yarra 
(03) 9820 7888

CUISINE French Mediterranean
WINE LISTPeter Baker / Michael Gibb
WINEs ON LIST 907 (47 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($7-$23 by the glass)

Locals endearingly call it The Bot and for those new to its charms it won’t take long to succumb. It’s not so much the serious number of listed wines – 907 – or the opportunity to taste 47 of them by the glass, which is impressive enough, but more so a refreshing philosophy that relates to what many drinkers want.

The Bot is home to one of the more comprehensive gin compilations in the country, and the aperitif hour is taken very seriously with multiple choices including a 14-year-old Madeira, a select range of Spanish sherries and on-trend Italian bitters. Cocktails include something called Drinking De Niro’s Way, which requires closer examination on the name alone. As for the beer listing – it also deserves close examination.

The wine list follows a clear philosophy: wines must reveal the bit of dirt where they hail from as well as distinctive winemaking. With the food menu designed around a French Mediterranean theme, this has given the sommeliers carte blanche to showcase everything French, but not to the exclusion of some smart Italians and Australians. Jeni Port



74 Glen Eira Rd, Ripponlea, Melbourne
(03) 9530 0111

CUISINE Australian
WINE LIST Jane Lopes
WINEs ON LIST 400 (35 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($12-$98 by the glass)

Attica has certainly put a great deal of effort into this innovative, exciting wine list.  One gets a real sense of adventure reading through the list and seeing, in addition to some of the expected icons, such a refreshing and welcome range of other, producers, regions and styles, not always found on wine lists. This is true both of the very strong wine by the glass list (that incudes Sherry and Madiera), the range of half bottles and magnums and the main wine list itself.

Vue de Monde

Level 55, Rialto Towers, 525 Collins St, Melbourne
(03) 9691 3888

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LISTCarlos Simoes
WINEs ON LIST 2,000 (42 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($10-$140 by the glass)

A world class list with so many highlights. German rieslings, pinot noir, magnums and Champagne – nice to see that they have not been seduced by the dark side and gone completely ‘Growers only’, but rather the best of both. By the glass includes wines under coravin and there is the option of selected wine pairings at three levels. Wonderful stuff.

CHAIRMAN'S COMMENTS: Attica and Vue de Monde both have lists befitting the quality and reputation of their chefs. Not surprisingly, Dinner by Heston has a similarly grand, aspirational list. The Mornington Peninsula has two lists at the highest quality: Ten Minutes by Tractor and now Doot Doot Doot.



152 Yarra St, Warrandyte
(03) 9844 5548

CUISINE Contemporary
WINE LIST Michelle Shaw
WINEs ON LIST 282 (16 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($10-$13.50 by the glass)

It would take many visits to even scratch the surface of the curious, interesting and exciting wines to be found throughout this eclectic list. One can take the safe option of the tasting menu, paddle in the pool of ‘by the glass’ or take the plunge. Locals excel, especially the Rieslings and Pinot Noir.


34 The Strand, Williamstown
(03) 9397 7799

CUISINE Mediterranean Seafood
WINE LIST Raúl Moreno Yagüe
WINEs ON LIST 70 (26 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($9-$16 by the glass)

Hard to go past a really impressive selection by the glass, not least because they represent such good value, but continue through this list which dabbles in so many fine regions and make your way to the very fine Cellar Collection and its mature reds. The pricing will hook you for life!

Arbory Bar & Eatery

1 Flinders Walk, Melbourne
(03) 8648 7644

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST Raúl Moreno Yagüe
WINEs ON LIST 50 (14 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $ ($8-$25 by the glass)

A compact list divided into ‘Classic’ and 'Adventurous’ wines, though surely the boundaries blur? We might wish to sample grapes such as Rkatsitelli and Touriga Nacional, but I doubt many consider them ‘classic’. No matter. It is an exciting list and there are plenty of true
classics – and more adventures to be had. The selection by the glass is tight but they represent excellent value.

Argus Dining Room

124 Main Rd, Hepburn Springs
(03) 5348 4199

CUISINE Contemporary
WINE LISTJeremy Shiell
WINEs ON LIST 450 (15 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($7-$25 by the glass)

Small collections from exceptional makers, both locally – Bindi, Wendouree – and from offshore – Ulysse Collin, Cotat, Lafarge – ensure that this list stands out from the crowd. Locals, especially Victorians, proliferate but there are also many offerings from abroad – more than enough for everyone. And for those wanting to go out on that natural limb, a selection of orange wines. Pricing is seriously appealing.

Avoca Hotel

115 High St, Avoca
(03) 5465 3018

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST Ian Urquhart
WINEs ON LIST 159 (20 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($6-$14 by the glass)

Lists which focus solely on local wines can sometimes come unstuck – not so here. The region offers a wealth of wonderful wines, especially Cabernet and Shiraz, but a wide array of varieties are on offer. There is also a useful vintage guide for assistance. Also, available here is a fantastic collection of beers, which do come from both local producers and those further afield.

Bistro Gitan

52 Toorak Rd, West South Yarra

(03) 9867 5853

WINE LIST Edouard Reymond
WINEs ON LIST 194 (16 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($11-$22 by the glass)

A list not afraid to exhibit numerous exciting mature wines from great local names. There is as much attention paid to offshore stars as to the local heroes. A combination of classics and emerging stars in a wide ranging selection by the glass. Impressive stuff and plenty of excellent value gems.

Bistro Guillaume Melbourne

8 Whiteman St, Southbank
(03) 9292 8888

WINE LISTEnri Cesarato
WINE ON LIST 162 (23 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($12-$30 by the glass)

If one had to guess, a list compiled by a lover of the Burgundian varieties who also offers a thorough knowledge of wines from around the globe. Some inspiring selections from the more obscure regions and varieties and a by the glass list that is both impressive and good value.

Bistro Vue

430 Little Collins St, Melbourne
(03) 9691 3838

CUISINE Modern French
WINE LIST Gavin Wraith/Remi Craquelin
WINE ON LIST 122 (21 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($10-$25 by the glass)

An appealing mix by the glass is followed by some stellar champagnes. Fizzophiles will not want to miss the special collection of aged bottles from the cellar of Charles Heidsieck. Many other gems to be sourced here but the Pinot Noir array leads the pack.

Black Caviar

Station St, Caulfield East
(03) 9257 7200

WINE LIST Dan Schwarze
WINEs ON LIST 86 (17 by the glass)
WINE PRICES$$ ($8.50-$22 by the glass)

To commence, the list offers an appealing flight of three different Penfold's Shiraz and, while wines from that stable dominate, there are numerous top producers sprinkled throughout – Jasper Hill, Shaw & Smith, Curly Flat and more. The list offers impressive value throughout.


74 Bourke St, Melbourne
(03) 9654 2252

WINE LIST Ben Knight
WINEs ON LIST 100 (18 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($10-$25 by the glass)

It is a very brave restaurant that openly admits to slashing its wine list from 300-400 choices to a mere 100, but it works. They have retained the soul of the place and ensured a pleasing mix of the well-known traditional offerings with exciting emerging producers. A list that reflects the enormous thought needed to pull this off.

Bouzy Rouge

470 Bridge Road Richmond
(03) 9429 4348

CUISINE Spanish/European
WINE LIST Ben Sanders
WINEs ON LIST 298 (27 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($7-$16 by the glass)

An extensive list which is well tailored to this Iberian establishment but numerous local gems as well. A good array of by the glass offerings, local heroes and offshore stars, which also represent excellent value. Among the surprises, which just keep coming, is a neat collection of Madeira.


4285 Cape Otway Rd, Birregurra
(03) 5236 2226

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST Jared Hill/Simon Freeman
WINEs ON LIST 450 (26 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($14-$34 by the glass)

Australia’s new international superstar on the restaurant scene deserves a wine list to match and it certainly has one that should attract an equal amount of attention. Don’t come looking for old familiar names and pleasant commercial offerings. There is a smattering of great names but mostly emerging stars. The local heroes are perhaps its strongest feature. This is the vinous version of extreme sports.

Brass Razu Wine Bar

13 Main St, Mornington
(03) 5975 0108

WINE LIST Dr Paul Collier
WINEs ON LIST 270 (24 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $ ($10-$13 by the glass)

While Mornington Peninsula and other Victorian heroes take pride of place in this impressive list, they have not been afraid to venture further afield where appropriate – so diners will also enjoy wines like the l’Écu Muscadet, various Italian whites and much more. Of course, one must get past the fabulous selection by the glass. There are many gems which represent great value scattered throughout and they are not hard to find.

Burma Lane

118 Little Collins St, Melbourne
(03) 9615 8500

CUISINE Asian inspired Modern Australian
WINE LIST Matthew Lamb
WINEs ON LIST 60 (18 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($12-$17 by the glass)

A short list this might be but it must be true that good things come in small packages. Some exciting and emerging superstars included here – names like Clonakilla, Stargazer and Domaine Simha to scratch the surface. The ‘grouping’ may be rather unorthodox but poke about and you'll uncover some diamonds.

Caffe E Cucina

581 Chapel St, South Yarra
(03) 9827 4139

WINE LIST Giacomo Pietrantuono
WINEs ON LIST 157 (32 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($13-$85 by the glass)

At first glance, an impressive range strongly Italian accented and many from slightly obscure producers, but there is much more. Pricing is superb – 2004 Dom Pérignon Rose for $450! It is the wines by the glass and coravin that really excite – Coulee de Serrant, Sassicaia, Bindi and much more.

Caffe La Via

252-254 Glenferrie Rd, Malvern
(03) 9509 6373

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST Dhruv Chawla
WINEs ON LIST 100 (16 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $ ($9.50-$13.50 by the glass)

The opening salvo is a collection of wines by the glass that are both intriguing and exceptional value.  They also offer the option of these wines by way of a 375ml carafe, ideal to allow a wider tasting. The list continues to cover the most desirable regions and varieties. A comprehensive and appealing list.

Caterinas Cucina E Bar

221 Queen St, Melbourne
(03) 9670 8488

WINE LIST Caterina Borsato
WINEs ON LIST 359 (14 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($12-$19 by the glass)

Quality Italians dominate the by the glass selection and there are plenty more to be found through this extensive collection, and they are very well priced, but in the need, it is an exceptional array of locals, including some appealing older vintages, which wins the day. A thoughtful Burgundian offering for those wishing to head in that direction.


109 Cotham Rd, Kew
(03) 9817 6468

WINE LIST Cristiano Ceccherini/Jesse Davidson
WINEs ON LIST 450 (24 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($10.50-$24 by the glass)

Unashamedly Italian perhaps, but a list that has really cherry-picked from the great producers. By the glass offers top Italians but there are plenty of local options. While it would be a shame not to take advantage of the many wonderful offerings from the top to bottom of Italy, those who do wish to venture into other regions will find more than enough exciting choices, especially with Chardonnay and Pinot Noir.


131 Yarra St, Geelong
(03) 5224 1515

CUISINE Rustic Italian
WINEs ON LIST 95 (15 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($7-$18 by the glass)

A very fine list, compact and thoughtful. Choices are for quality producers – fine examples are Giaconda and Bindi locally; Zind Humbrecht, Ata Rangi and Felton Road from offshore.  What lifts this list to rarefied air is the exceptional value to be found throughout. A list to draw you back many times.

Chairmans Club

448 Epsom Rd, Flemington
1300 727 575

WINE LIST Stewart Malone
WINEs ON LIST 260 (13 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($11-$25 by the glass)

A traditional list this might be, but one chock full of stars and legends. This is not where you'll find esoteric grower fizz but rather the great names in abundance. There is a neat collection of Grange for deeper pockets and more than a sprinkling of more mature vintages. Quality wherever one looks.


Basement, 141 Flinders Ln, Melbourne
(03) 9650 3155

CUISINE Modern Asian
WINE LIST Travis Howe
WINEs ON LIST 347 (37 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($10-$38 by the glass)

The collection of Chablis and Burgundies at the end of this list is the highlight, with some great names like Denis Mortet, Roumier and Mugneret Gibourg. It follows an impressive set of wines by the glass, alternative formats and numerous offerings from around the globe. The focus there is more on the emerging excitement rather than the classically traditional.


42D Anlsow St, Woodend
(03) 5427 2007

CUISINE European
WINE LIST Kathryn Russack
WINEs ON LIST 55 (6 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($9-$24 by the glass)

A tight list – the motto is quality over quantity, and rightly so. Largely offbeat selections which will appeal to the vinously adventurous, but some famous names as well – Bindi, Clonakilla, Longview and more. From any aspect, this is a list of exceptional value and there are many gems to enjoy.


60 Stanley St Collingwood
(03) 9080 7474

CUISINE European
WINE LIST David Lawler/Tim Sacklini
WINEs ON LIST 100 (11 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($132-$8 by the glass)

The opportunity to enjoy a wine like Coche Dury or a Rousseau Grand Cru from 2005 by the glass will excite the most jaded winelover – and who knows what will be available next week. A list that screams quality from every corner – Donnhoff, Bindi, Chatto, JJ Prom and so much more. And that is before we even get to their Reserve list. This is a tight list but an exceptional one, carefully constructed. It represents excellent value.

Cru Wine Bar & Cafe

916 Glenferrie Rd, Kew
(03) 9818 4366

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST Tony Donnini/Colleen Haggarty/Andrew Pickering/Peter Rose
WINEs ON LIST 350 (18 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($22-$10 by the glass)

A list leaning like Pisa, to the Italians, but with many other gems. They proudly exhibit some intriguing oddities and also verticals as such classics as Rockford Basket Press. Where this list is so compelling is in the value it offers. Just when you find a diamond you could not possibly go past, along comes another handful. Then more. Enjoy prospecting

Cumulus Up

45 Flinders Lne, Melbourne
(03) 9650 1445

CUISINE Contemporary
WINE LIST Mark Williamson
WINEs ON LIST 476 (18 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($9-$24 by the glass)

A list bursting at the seams with interesting, obscure, rare and intriguing wines. This is not the venue for traditional selections, but rather a meeting place for left field selections, young gun producers and emerging varieties. Paradoxically, winelovers are more likely to recognise some of the offshore options than locals.

Cutler & Co

55–57 Gertrude St, Fitzroy
(03) 9419 4888

CUISINE Contemporary
WINEs ON LIST 580 (32 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($9-$88 by the glass)

A list that travels down many paths – more than enough classic wines and legendary names from around the globe to please the most entrenched traditionalists, while there is also an extraordinary array of the wild, the weird and the wonderful – skin contact whites, wines from the most obscure parts of the Balkans and distant Europe as brief examples, to excite the most adventurous among us. Excellent collection of halves and magnums as well.

Deck Flinders

Wood & Cook Sts, Flinders
(03) 5989 0201

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LISTRaúl Moreno Yagüe
WINEs ON LIST145 (28 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($8-$32 by the glass)

A list neatly split between Mornington Peninsula gems and elsewhere, with additional sections for Coravin and also ‘cellar lists’, you may need to explore but there is lots to love everywhere. Some appealing older vintages, plus wines from afar as Georgia, Croatia and Lebanon. Pricing makes this a list to return to as often as you can.

Dinner By Heston Melbourne

8 Whiteman St, Melbourne
(03) 9292 5570

WINE LIST Loic Avril
WINEs ON LIST1000 (100 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($16-$1,050 by the glass)

There are a thousand wines in this list. I could not find one I would not like to drink. That said, I doubt I'd get past the coravin – an amazing array of great wines at three pouring levels (and then another set of by the glass, just as exciting). This list is simply a rollcall of great names, wines, producers and vintages. You could not possibly go wrong.


40 Jacka Blvd, St Kilda
(03) 9534 8221

CUISINE Mediterranean
WINE LIST Roland Troedel
WINEs ON LIST 600 (36 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($12-$60 by the glass)

Clever use of the coravin provides diners with interesting, rare and often mature wines by the glass, while also offering a selection pairing a local with its equivalent from offshore, mostly generously priced. A wide selection from around Australia and the globe make for a compelling wine experience.

Doot Doot Doot

166 Balnarring Rd, Merricks North
(03) 5931 2500

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST James Audas
WINEs ON LIST 300 (18 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($12-$28 by the glass)

This is a winery restaurant like none other and the wine list fits the pattern perfectly. There is so much to explore in each section: predictably Willow Creek by the glass but an unexpected tiny yet thought provoking range of other possibilities. The rest of this extensive list offers a balance of known and about to be known winemakers and wines: breath-takingly daring, requiring a skilled sommelier and an adventurous diner. Worth a detour.

Edwards Waterfront

101 Bentinck St, Portland
(03) 5523 1032

CUISINE Modern Australian
Wine List Mark Mcintyre
Wines ON LIST 142 (50 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($7-$35 by the glass)

A list jammed, in every way, with appealing wines. Some interesting local wines, very well priced, by the glass, with some traditional offerings. a good collection of beers and malt whiskies for those who prefer to head down that path.


871 Burke Rd, Camberwell
(03) 9882 8877

CUISINE Cretan (Greek)
WINE LIST Angie Giannakodakis
WINEs ON LIST 143 (19 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($11-$27 by the glass)

Expect the unexpected at Elyros: the range of indigenous Greek varieties is likely to surprise even the most experienced winelover. Still the choices are significant both for those wishing to try Greek wines or to accept the challenge of exploring obscure corners of the vinous world for something different. Outstanding cutting edge wines will also tempt many.


49 Rathdowne St, Carlton
(03) 9036 4949

CUISINE European
WINE LIST Angie Giannakodakis
WINEs ON LIST 203 (14 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($12-$18 by the glass)

Epocha has the comfortable feel of a European bistro or even taverna and is a great place to enjoy a diverse range of less-well known but delicious European wines. Indigenous varieties abound especially from Greece and Italy and there's a neat balance between everyday wines and the classics.

Estelle Bistro

243 High St, Northcote
(03) 9489 4609

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST James Dossan
WINEs ON LIST 100 (19 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($10-$22 by the glass)

A smallish yet beautifully balanced international list that offers diners the possibility of a substantial range of varietals. There's a mix of up and coming producers who are doing interesting things and established winemakers, often trying something different. Victoria is well-treated which is appropriate yet the list often wanders off the beaten track and offers a pleasant surprise.

Estelle By Scott Pickett

245 High St, Northcote
(03) 9489 4609

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST James Dossan / Rani Parish
WINEs ON LIST 480 (25 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($10-$40 by the glass) 

This is an impressive international list with breadth across the great wine regions of the world and sufficient depth to satisfy most palates. The concept is not dissimilar to that of the bistro but the wines chosen have greater gravitas and complexity. The great wines of the world are represented both at home and abroad but youthful vintages and with
some age. A satisfying list.

European (The)

161 Spring St, Melbourne
(03) 9654 0811

CUISINE European
WINE LIST Chris Broughton
WINEs ON LIST 600 (17 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($11-$25 by the glass)

This remains one of Melbourne's finest wine lists, clearly focused on the great wines of Europe and some of its better everyday drops. Impressive by the glass and covering all bases. The extensive range, for example, of sparkling wines impresses. There's a brilliantly handled educational perspective throughout. The section on Lambrusco with its five examples illustrates this admirably. There's breadth and depth, a mini encyclopedia of European wines. Much to love.


187 Flinders Lne, Melbourne
(03) 9639 6811

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST Brendan Bennett
WINEs ON LIST350 (24 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($14-$70 by the glass)

This is an international list of great breadth. The Australian section gives good coverage to Victoria and balances established and cutting-edge producers. Overseas, classic varieties are given greater coverage yet there is a good range of emerging varieties. Throughout, great care is taken to choose outstanding producers.

Fishermen’s Pier

1 Yarra St, Geelong
(03) 5222 4100

WINE LIST Jimmy Avraam
WINEs ON LIST 122 (21 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $ ($9-$16 by the glass)

The focus of this list is on wines from Australasia with a smattering of Europeans to add some perspective to the collection. Appropriately, it is particularly strong in wines sourced locally. Mark-ups are reasonable and there is an excellent balanced between modestly-priced and more expensive drops. A small list of old and rare reds adds a dimension to the list.

Flying Duck Hotel

67 Bendigo St, Prahran
(03) 9510 8081

CUISINE European
WINE LIST Raúl Moreno Yagüe
WINEs ON LIST 75 (24 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $ ($8-$20 by the glass)

While this is a small list, it does have a substantial offering by the glass with quality being a key factor in the choices made. It shows admirably balance between local, Australasian and European wines; established and emerging producers. Modest prices abound. There's a cellar list for those wishes to pick up some classic wines with age at very fair prices.

Garden State Hotel

101 Flinders Lne, Melbourne
(03) 8396 5777

CUISINE Modern Australian/Gastropub
WINE LIST Anthony-Sabastian Tran
WINEs ON LIST 144 (24 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($9.50-$21 by the glass)

This list wears its heart on its sleeve dominated as it is by up and coming small producers from home and aboard who dare to be different. The 'Drink with Me' concept will appeal to some - choose your food and the sommelier will match 6 half glasses to those dishes. The list is organised differently - Quirky & Textural Whites; Big Bad & Bold Reds. Vivre la difference!


14 High St, Inverleigh
(03) 5265 1111

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST Stacey-Lee Edwards
WINEs ON LIST 245 (13 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($10-$28 by the glass)

This wonderful country restaurant showcases Matt Dempsey's skill as a chef and Stacey-Lee Edwards' experience and knowledge as a sommelier. The list is a triumph highlighting the importance of choice. It's an exemplary local collection yet ranges far & wide (to the only sauvignon blanc from Burgundy - Goisot's). Well worth the detour.

Golden Dragon Palace

363 Manningham Rd, Lower Templestowe
(03) 9852 4086

CUISINE Cantonese
WINEs ON LIST 290 (14 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($8.50-$10.50 by the glass)

An impressive list for a variety of reasons, but the hallmarks are prestige Champagne, a clever, judiciously matured collection of Burgundy, a yin and yang of young and aged cult wines of Australia, with a thoughtful approach to weighting wines in favour of matching the flavours and textures of the cuisine. It's great to see pinot noir from Bindi and Felton Road sharing space, but equally so the lesser-sung white wines of Rockford having a presence here. Indeed, while Champagne catches the eye, gewurztraminer, pinot gris, Rhone whites and 'other whites' do a fine job of being very interesting alongside. Many of the producers in the list seem to have been chosen for wines that are regional leaders, so Cloudy Bay Te Koko and Dog Point Section 94 lead sauvignon blanc selections, as an example. Impressive to see big ticket wines like Leroy's Les Beaux Monts in the list, but there's plenty at all price points, particularly in the precious sub-$100 zone. A very well selected list, it feels.

Grand Dining Room (The)

333 Burnley St, Richmond
(03) 9429 2530

WINE LIST Darek Piechowicz
WINEs ON LIST 301 (20 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($11-$25 by the glass)

Classics of Australian wine are the beating heart of this well chosen list, though Italian wine, and Italian varieties, star alongside. Wonderful to see luminaries of Australia's fine wine culture, like Cullen, Pikes and Petaluma, found amongst the keenly-chosen collection of Italy's big name producers, including Roberto Voerzio and Produttori del Barbaresco. While Italian reds flesh out the top end of this wine list, there's merit in exploring Pizzini's suite of Australian Italian grape varieties, or testing out some star wines from Torzi Matthews and Coriole. A surprise in this list is also found towards the end, with a superb selection spanning a varieties of styles of dessert wines for those with a sweet tooth. It's a list neatly skewed to the Italian cuisine of The Grand Dining Room, and judicious selection will be rewarding.

Healesville Hotel

256 Maroondah Hwy, Healesville
(03) 5962 4002

CUISINE Regional
WINE LIST Michael Kennedy
WINEs ON LIST 400 (20 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($9-$18 by the glass)

A perennial favourite for its beer, cider and gin listings, the Healesville Hotel seems to have amplified its wine collection, particularly with the strong showing of local wines. Indeed, there are some very clever, fun inclusions from featured local winemakers that describe personal details and winemaking philosophy alongside truly unique, cellar selections. The list uses the Yarra Valley as a bedrock for its offering, with staples in pinot noir, chardonnay and cabernet sauvignon richly represented. From outside the region, there's a wealth of regions and wines that feel aptly chosen for interest and diversity of expression - don't miss 'interesting white grapes', 'shiraz nearby' or 'interesting red grapes' for some highlights. Great to see some younger generation, experimental producers finding footing in this list too. It's a celebration of wine writ large.


29 Chapel St, Windsor
(03) 9510 4050

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST Eric Wagnon
WINEs ON LIST 216 (62 by the glass)
WINE PRICES$$ ($12-$160 by the glass)

An outstanding list for various reasons, but the most compelling is the epic, lengthy by the glass selection that gives drinkers a near endless opportunity to sample great wines of the world. Options for by the glass come in tasting size and full glasses, enhancing the experience at Highline. The bottle list feels unapologetically skewed to Australian wines, with the selection leaning towards smaller, artisan producers, experimental or newer to Australia grape varieties, but there's homage to great, fine wines and a very serious, finely-tuned collection of Penfold's Grange. Orange wines, roses and textural/unique whites form a solid baseline for those seeking a more avant garde experience, though there are totems of the fine wine world scattered through the list. Judiciously chosen imports are a perfect addendum to the wonderful representation of local wines. Spirits and beers are well chosen too. Great drinking here.


1 Camp Street Daylesford
(03) 5348 1218

CUISINE Contemporary
WINE LIST Jesse Leith
WINEs ON LIST 365 (0 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($v by the glass)

A wine list full of charisma and interest, it offers a good anchor into the home state of Victoria with a fantastic focus on artisan, cool climate wines of Macedon Ranges. To see such honing in on single regions is a delight, and further more the crisp whites and leaner pinots of the Victorian region are ideal with the cuisine of the restaurant. Thoughtful selections of sake, particularly from lauded Junmai cuvees, are also an attractive proposition. Of course, there's a judicious listing of grower-Champagne and big-ticket, grand marques alongside. It's also one of the
larger collections of Japanese fermented and distilled products, with Grace wine of Yamanashi prefecture leading the way. Don't miss out the excellent collection of Japanese whisky, too. For all the local wine and Japanese drinks, Burgundy is also tremendous here, and likely to catch the eye of the aficionado for smaller producers and unsung vineyards. Very well done drinking here.

Kooyong Lawn Tennis Club

489 Glenferrie Rd, Kooyong
(03) 9822 3333

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST Patrice Renaudin
WINEs ON LIST 192 (17 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $ ($4-$13 by the glass)

Membership of the Kooyong Lawn Tennis Club comes with some serious vinous benefits. Here'a a very well curated wine program that is richly endowed with classic Australian wine, some of the progressive or avant garde wines du jour and a serious grounding in some of the world's great wine regions. You could finish up a couple of sets with some of cult wine producers Sorrenberg's or Bindi's top end chardonnays, though grillo, a lesser-known white grape variety from Mount Etna, might pique your interest. For the days when tennis elbow is keeping you off the court, there's some of Australia's top end shiraz to work through, with Henschke's Mount Edelstone from 2001 at bargain pricing. Other mature wines, like 2001 Peter Lehmann Stonewell Shiraz, 2000 Mitchelton Print Shiraz or 2002 Clarendon Hills Brookman Vineyard Merlot are icing on the cake of a list that offers a grand scope of Australia's fine wine canons, while titillating with some lesser-known drops for good measure.

La Bonta

12-14 Piper St, Kyneton
(03) 5422 3683

WINE LIST Tim Austin
WINEs ON LIST206 (29 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($10-$46 by the glass)

If only every local Italian joint had a wine list like this! Thoughtfully put together at every turn, La Bonta has a cracking line up of wine that honours the heritage of the cuisine, but doesn't forget to be supportive of exceptional wines from around 'the neighbourhood'. Indeed, it's brilliant to see up and coming, younger generation producers of Victoria given exposure here like Josh Cooper (Cobaw Ridge), right alongside the high end stalwarts of Jasper Hill, Bindi and Epis. It's a list that flits from region-to-region unearthing gems or the unexpected, like new-gen wine from Konpira Maru or the small batch releases from gun winemaker
Matt Harrop under his Silent Way label. There's a wonderful selection of
Italian wine led by big names like Vajra, Rocca and Biondi-Santi, but the
complement of edgier wine from Lamoresca (Sicily), Fletcher (Piedmont) and Passopisciaro (Sicily) is pretty remarkable to see outside of hip, urban dining settings (and kudos for that!). Great list.

Lake House

4 King St, Daylesford
(03) 5348 3329

CUISINE Australian Modern
WINE LIST Deniz Hardman
WINEs ON LIST 1200 (29 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($13-$29 by the glass)

One of Australia's great wine lists, carefully nurtured by some of the country's most talented, thoughtful wine professionals. It's a list that's steeped in Australia's colourful palette of wines and wine producers, varieties and styles, but finds depth in remarkable collections of fine wine from around the globe - indeed, few lists go as deep or interesting in Champagne, Burgundy or riesling as this, irrespective of regional setting or urban. Highlights come in surprises too, like magnums of perfectly mature Craiglee shiraz, or Clos Rougeard and Nicholas Joly's expressive Loire whites set amongst the more stalwart of France's wine producers. While the list has had a baseline of classics, sections like 'For Wine Explorers' shows that edgier expressions are on equal footing. Marvellous, thrilling and epic in scale, it's a wine list to pore over and admire, as much as drink deeply from.


273-279 Cecil St, South Melbourne
(03) 9690 3737

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST Giovanni Laera
WINEs ON LIST 194 (17 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $ ($8.50-$18 by the glass)

The careful choice of exactly which wine to offer has elevated this pub hotel list. There is an emphasis on Victorian wines with a balance between established favourites and emerging talents. An eclectic range of very good wines from around Australia, New Zealand and Europe round out an impressive list. Modest markups add to the attraction.

Le Cinque Terre

289 Bay St, Brighton
0413 480 365

CUISINE Spanish, Italian
WINE LIST Giovanni Laera
WINEs ON LIST 76 (18 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $ ($7-$17 by the glass)

This is a terrific small list, perfectly in tune with the Italian and Spanish cuisine which they offer. The focus is on the everyday wines from these countries but with a smattering of local and New Zealand wines to offer interest. Similarly, there are some of the classic wines of Italy amid the modest prices of most wines on the list.

L'Hotel Gitan

32 Commercial Rd, Prahran
(03) 9999 0990

CUISINE European
WINE LIST Edouard Reymond
WINEs ON LIST 153 (19 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($11-$24 by the glass)

The Reymond family have been leaders in the Melbourne hospitality scene and this list indicates why. It's an impeccably chosen international list with a solid core of many of Europe and Australia's most reputed wineries supported by some emerging talents. Always dependable with delights and surprises abounding.

Lobster Cave

18 North Concourse, Beaumaris
(03) 9589 6329

CUISINE Seafood & Grill
WINEs ON LIST 336 (19 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($13-$22 by the glass)

This is a bold, grand list as befits a place offering many of the finest treats available. It is a formidable international list with several youthful vintages of Grange and an Old and Rare List, de luxe champagnes, and plenty of Australian best and most valuable wines. Impressive.

Long Chim

8 Whiteman St, Southbank
(03) 9292 8888

WINE LIST Matthew Brooke
WINEs ON LIST 78 (18 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($12-$24 by the glass)

This is an impressive small list perfectly in tune with David Thompson's Thai food. The range of reds shows how well they get it. The list starts as it should with a decent range of cocktails and beers, and offers some inspired choice by the glass and bottle from a collection of wines from around the globe.

Longrain Melbourne

40-44 Little Bourke St, Melbourne
(03) 9671 3151

WINE LIST Tristan Cuthbert
WINEs ON LIST 103 (15 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($11-$23 by the glass)

This well-established Thai restaurant understands wine and which styles suit its cuisine. It is a small but carefully curated international collection balancing Australasian and European classics with those from emerging producers. The pinot class is a standout. The wines by the glass are modestly priced.

Lucy Liu

23 Olive Lne, Melbourne
(03) 9639 5777

WINE LIST Yan Qiu (Ollie) Wang
WINEs ON LIST 273 (38 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($8-$19 by the glass)

Lucy Liu has a substantial international list which offers classic wines and emerging favourites from Australasia and Europe. It has breadth across the range and so finding something suitable to drink with the Chinese cuisine will not be a chore.


23 Olive Lne, Melbourne
(03) 9690 0185

CUISINE Contemporary
WINE LIST Daniel Gibson
WINEs ON LIST 180 (30 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($13-$38 by the glass)

This is a bold, cutting edge list that offers interesting examples from emerging producers at home and abroad. Judging by the staff recommendations, there's no shortage of advice available on the floor. For those looking for the tried and true, there are abundant wines on the list that will be familiar. And there's a remarkable collection of Wendouree.


5 Gamon St, Seddon
(03) 9362 7333

CUISINE Modern Asian
WINE LIST Ben Knight
WINEs ON LIST 50 (14 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $ ($8-$12 by the glass)

Luxsmith is Ben Knight's list. I suspect that Ben is one of a kind - which is just as well. It's a very good list and the wines go well with the Vietnamese food. Ben believes that wine should be fun and admits that this is not a normal list. I suspect that most will enjoy engaging with it and Ben. If the worst comes to the worst, the wines will save the night. The food, too, I suspect.

Macedon Wine Room

652 Black Forest Dr, Macedon
(03) 5426 3030

CUISINE European
WINE LIST Steven Gerdes
WINEs ON LIST 300 (17 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($9-$14 by the glass)

Every wine region needs a list (or two) like this as it pays due attention to the locals and places their wines in a national and international context. Prices are particularly modest. The range of varieties covered is impressive, as is the surprise packet of a section devoted to agioirgitko & xinomavro. The list has wonderful breadth and offers a many delightful wines.


21 Bond St, Melbourne
(03) 9629 5900

CUISINE Middle Eastern/Mediterranean
WINEs ON LIST 304 (22 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($12-$30 by the glass)

The long-established and significant Melbourne restaurant continues to have a wine list to match its stature. It has depth at home and abroad, especially with the great wines of France. In Australia, classic wines are balanced by the inclusion of cutting-edge favourites.

Malvern Hotel

1117 Malvern Rd, Toorak
(03) 9822 3582

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST Thomas Robson
WINEs ON LIST 252 (19 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($8-$22 by the glass)

This suburban pub punches above its weight when it comes to the wine list. It's a substantial international collection focused most clearly on Australian wines, and in particular, those from Victoria. Varieties given the most coverage, not surprisingly, are chardonnay, pinot, shiraz and cabernet. There's also a great section on Italian varietals.


53 Gertrude St, Fitzroy
(03) 9419 6262

CUISINE Contemporary
WINEs ON LIST 188 (18 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($9-$28 by the glass)

If you were to give an encyclopaedia definition of 'Australian contemporary wine bar' the word 'Marion' should be alongside. It's a wine list that traverses all the nooks and crannies of world wine, but with a determination to show best-ofs, judiciously selected for high quality rather than hype or trendy appeal. Sure, there is a slew of exotic skin contact (orange) wines and edgy, younger generation producers, but best cuvees are the theme and the selection is cutting edge, clever and thrilling. If you want staples, then they're here too - great Champagne, sparkling wine from antipodean leaders like Quartz Reef and Swift. Wines are categorised conveniently and evocatively by style rather than variety, so 'textured and savoury; moderate; white' is phrased for drinkers' comfort rather than sommelier obscurity. It's a list that is determined to satisfy all comers, but with highest standard in mind. It's just fantastic to see a collection such as this, inviting and available.


313 Drummond St, Carlton
(03) 9347 5610

CUISINE Regional Italian
WINE LIST Kara Maisano
WINEs ON LIST 594 (21 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($10-$25 by the glass)

So good to see the spread of wines and wine styles offered here, though there's a very good anchor into Italy if you're looking for an authenticity from the cuisine. By the glass has character to spare, where else to get the often-unseen Coolangatta Estate Semillon of Shoalhaven alongside the wild, incredible Cos from Sicily and then an offering from Waiheke Island in New Zealand. What colour! Italian wine is of course hero here, with a diversity of grape varieties, producers and styles on offer. Indeed, it seems there's a great lust for offering some of Italy's lesser-known grape varieties, which makes for an exciting and interesting dining experience. Amongst Italian wines, there's Burgundy and Beaujolais, or for intrepid drinkers, wines from Hungary, Slovenia and South Africa. Australian wines form a lesser but important part of the backdrop, with 'best of' examples as a bedrock. A distinct wine list here.


116 Bridport St, Albert Park
(03) 9690 5155

CUISINE Steakhouse, Mediterranean
WINE LIST Sonia Popovic
WINEs ON LIST 250 (18 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($8.50-$14 by the glass)

It's a list that speaks of owner-operators who are wide-eyed wine lovers, wishing to celebrate the global diversity of wine with their diners. A list that gives drinkers every opportunity to satisfy their desire to drink wines of repute and comfort, or to dive into something a little unknown. It's great to see incredible, cellar-aged wines like top end 1992 Bollinger Grand Annee, or biodynamic cult wine like 2010 Radford Riesling, then have the opportunity to drink significant bottles from landmark producers like Wynns, Tim Adams or Wild Duck Creek. The list has a broad theme that seems to embrace all styles and all regions, with an eye on classic offerings rather than avant garde, with the additional benefit that Mediterraneo seems to enjoy cellaring wines for long periods before release, a rare currency in the current climate of wine lists. Indeed, wine aficionados should make a bee-line to pick out some of these mature gems!

Melbourne Supper Club

161 Spring St, Melbourne
(03) 9654 6300

CUISINE Bar & Supper Fare
WINE LIST Chris Broughton
WINEs ON LIST 600 (14 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($9-$24 by the glass)

A gargantuan wine list of epic consideration and proportions, allowing drinkers nearly every possible iteration of wine and style available on Australia's fair shores. The culture around this remarkable list is writ large in local folklore, from late night artisan gin and tonics through to sometimes reckless but celebratory opening of rare, grower Champagne. Indeed, the volumes of Champagne available are staggering (and well drunk by the Australian wine industry community!), though Burgundy and Rhone are ably competing for top ranking in this list. Australian wine is widely represented and showcases a tour de force of lovingly collected boutique producers set alongside the prestigious cuvess of our best known winemakers. A near impossible list to scale for its diversity and opportunity to drink greatly, may the Supper Club, and all those who work with wine there, continue on their lofty trajectory!


12 St Huberts Rd, Coldstream
(03) 9739 1888

CUISINE European
WINE LIST Martin Rendek/Frederic Lamagere
WINEs ON LIST 65 (16 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($12-$22 by the glass)

Meletos doesn't shy away from supporting local with a wine list that runs exceptionally deep with all things Victorian (and the odd inclusion in beer and spirits!) wine. By the glass is friendly mix of accessible drops that lean heavily to the wines of Yarra Valley, with newer-generation producers like Valere, Ar Fion, Out Of Step and An Ape Is Loose featured. The wine list follows a similar trend giving drinkers a mainlined experience of what's hot and hip from Beechworth, Heathcote, and Strathbogie, in small measure, while Yarra wineries often delineated by
'sub-region' form the bedrock of the wine offering. It's charisma packed and fun to negotiate, with the encouragement to try something new, different or unexpected, the by-product of the selection. Original, local leaning, heart on sleeve stuff. Great to see.


81 High St, Northcote
(03) 9939 4762

CUISINE Modern European
WINE LIST Bronwyn Kabboord
WINEs ON LIST 98 (22 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($10-$22 by the glass)

An extraordinary list that delivers a near complete expression of contemporary drinking in Australia. It's spirited and purposeful in its hefty inclusion of a wide range of craft/artisan beer, clever in selection of varying iterations of sake, brilliant in its detailing of avant garde Australian winemaking. The selection is tied intuitively to the menu, with the Kabboord duo shapeshifting their produce and wine seasonally and to availability. Utterly thrilling to see such diversity available and understand that near daily adjustments form part of the fabric of this list. Let alone that the menu is eclectic, the lay out and delivery of the wine and drinks options are well-considered in design and original in layout. Another highlight are exotic varieties, often autochthonous to their place of international origin, enhancing the fine wine offering alongside Australian cult and prestige producers. As a footnote, this list also contains one of the best beer selections going around. Magic.

Merrijig Kitchen

1 Campbell St, Port Fairy
(03) 5568 2324

CUISINE Regional
WINE LIST Tanya Connellan
WINEs ON LIST 223 (13 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($10-$15 by the glass)

A celebration of local and artisan wine producers and those working towards the ideal of sustainability, this is a very modern, progressive wine list that doesn't shy away from the lesser-known and unsung (yet!) wine producers of Australia, with a keen eye on local and broader Victorian wine culture. Great to see a specific section of this wine menu offering a diversity of producers from locals in the often-overlooked Henty wine region, with Hochkirch, Crawford River and Tarrington amongst the noteworthy wines. There's a whimsical nature to some of the sections (Beauj-licious! or we LOVE whisky! anyone?), while sommelier favourites including riesling, Loire, eaux de vies and fortified wines are additional highlights. It's a stellar list that brings to life the joy of the restaurant's sense of discovery and adventure in all things vinous and beyond.

Midnight Starling

60 Piper St, Kyneton
(03) 5422 3884

WINE LIST Daniel Saligari
WINEs ON LIST 76 (14 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($10-$22 by the glass)

A strong showing from Australian contemporary wine producers with a decided lean to more expressive wine styles. It's a pretty, darn hip list that seems to excel in showcasing newer-to-Australia grape varieties, and some of Europe's lesser-seen wine regions. Great to see Austria, Loire and Gaillac getting a good run on the wine list, as it is the lean towards lighter, fresher red wines, textural whites and a spread of different sparkling wine styles. While relatively short, there's plenty of diversity and charisma in these pages, and spirits, beers and ciders are additionally interesting. A couple of judiciously matured wines also adorn
the menu for good measure. A savvy selection that ideally dresses the dining experience and quality kitchen offering.

Mitchell Harris Wines

38 Doveton St, Nth Ballarat
(03) 5331 8931

CUISINE Contemporary Bar Food & shared plates
WINE LIST John Harris
WINEs ON LIST 167 (32 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($16-$8 by the glass)

What a coup that a winery restaurant can see the benefit in scope and scale of their wine program beyond that of their cellar door. While Mitchell Harris wines are already of a serious standard, their kudos is only raised by the broad inclusion of interesting wines to complement their fine offering. Wines in this list tend to read like the sort of selections that winemakers make when they're drinking away from their home turf, with fine pinot noir, cult producers, Piedmont's tannic, medium weight reds, various iterations of chardonnay, and, of course, plenty of acid-driven riesling from marquee regions. It's a list of bistro classics and edgier expressions, an assortment that speaks of care and consideration, plus an interest in diversifying consumers' dining experiences. Seriously well done and kudos to John Harris and team for their brave step out of the spotlight.


30 Russell Pl, Melbourne
(03) 9650 5020

CUISINE European/Modern Australian
WINE LIST Chris Broughton
WINEs ON LIST 78 (14 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $ ($17.5-$10 by the glass)

Plenty to tuck into here with a particular bent to the expressive nature of younger generation wine producers, and those making wine outside the boundaries of some of wine's conventional wisdom. Therefore, you can drink the fun-loving juice from Boomtown collective or Bryan Martin of Ravensworth's pristine, crunchy-textured riesling pet nat. Nosiola and ugni blanc make an appearance, but so too we find top end Australian riesling, serious shiraz from the likes of Best's and Jasper Hill, all with equal footing to the likes of Piedmont cult darling Olek Bondonio or Marko Fon's orange wine of Slovenia. The list zigs and zags all over the globe, thematically broad and inviting for a raft of different tastes. Kudos for pushing boundaries here, with many uneasy bedfellows found in the one compelling wine collection.

Neighbourhood Wine

1 Reid St, Fitzroy North
(03) 9486 8306

CUISINE European
WINE LIST Simon Denman
WINEs ON LIST 0 (22 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($9-$22 by the glass)

An adventurous wine list in one sense, almost entirely built around natural wine. For those in the know, the wine team uses maximum discretion to carefully hone their list, and the resulting pages are a cavalcade of fascinating, delicious, idiosyncratic and well-made wines that come from the less-is-more idiom of winemaking. It's a list that oscillates between touchstones of this wild world of wine, with pint-sized producers from Adelaide Hills Basket Range parish nestled in next to Jura classics, orange wines of France and Italy, obscure grape varieties like aligote and pineau d’Aunis. It's a list that may polarise, but once wine is in glass, perhaps from the extensive and creatively hewn by-the-glass offering, and food is on table, then things really start to make further sense. It's a wine bar list that stretches imagination and excites at the unknown, but without pretension, and indeed, staff know their way around their offering intimately. Drink deeply.

Noble Rot

51 Point Lonsdale Rd, Point Lonsdale
(03) 5258 5115

CUISINE Tapas/Pizza
WINE LIST Jordan Berry
WINEs ON LIST 228 (15 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($9-$15 by the glass)

A clever list that offers drinkers a wide broadcast of global wine canons but anchors you into the local offerings from some of the more liberal, creative set of current winemaking. There's currency in this avant garde selection, with quality producers like Sorrernberg, By Farr and Bannockburn sidling up next to JJ Prum, JJ Morel and Lamoresca. Plenty of anchors here for those seeking comfort and ease of selection, but the dedicated wine pros manning Noble Rot will ably guide drinkers into left of centre and expressive wines listed amongst the prestige and well-versed wine expressions. Great to see such dedication to wines of Victoria, a sense of pride emerges from these pages. Some judicious older wines also appear through the listings, and canny wine fans will note the value in such. Nicely done here.


8 Whiteman St, Southbank
(03) 9292 5777‎

CUISINE Japanese
WINEs ON LIST 276 (20 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($12-$35 by the glass)

A wine list steeped in classics and high end wine offerings, with Australia at the forefront and Victorian wines especially given due care. Sake, in a variety of shapes and sizes, styles and forms, is also an important element in this menu, appropriately chosen to feature at the top of the drinks listings. Aromatic whites are also judiciously included, a nod to their appropriateness alongside Nobu's exceptional breadth of Japanese cuisine. Fine wines from Burgundy and an extensive selection of Champagne are also worth an exploration, though benchmarks from Loire Valley, Australia and New Zealand might just pique a drinker's interest too. There's a neat collection of mature wines to round out the offering, and biodynamic and organic producers are scattered throughout the line-ups here. A very complete, well organised, detailed list that explores the nuances of global wine, well.

O My

23 Woods St, Beaconsfield
(03) 9769 9000

CUISINE Garden Based
WINE LIST Chayse Bertoncello
WINEs ON LIST 31 (16 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $ ($11-$35 by the glass)

Great to see a reflection of locavore, organic and grow-your-own ethos in wine producers who follow a similar idiom for their endeavours. Indeed, the short list is a heady offering of avant garde, younger generation, Australian (and more importantly, Victorian) wine producers who work in a simpatico fashion to the mores of the kitchen. There's wines from sommeliers including Fleet and Athletes of Wine, while hip producers like Shadowfax, Valere and Fikkers lead the charge for a shift in fine wine culture. Great to see so many aromatic, textural whites included, as are the lighter, fresher styles of red wine, likely destined for a light chill before serving. A casual, approachable wine list of deep interest and personality awaits the intrepid drinker here.


137 Flinders Lne, Melbourne
(03) 9639 7073

WINE LIST Jordan Marr
WINEs ON LIST 180 (20 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($10-$24 by the glass)

This bold selection in a new French restaurant hangs its heart on its sleeve declaring that the wines it serves are what those involved like to drink. It features cutting edge French and Australian producers as well as like-minded winemakers from around the globe. There is a Rare, Aged and Expensive section for those looking for established classics.

Petit Tracteur

1208 Mornington Flinders Rd, Main Ridge
(03) 5989 2510

WINE LIST Jacques Savary de Beauregard
WINEs ON LIST 98 (24 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($10-$27 by the glass)

It's always a tricky balance with winery-focussed dining to ensure that customers get a mix of the house specialities alongside a broader offering so outsiders take the dining experience seriously. This wine list does a very good job of giving the in-house wines an elevation in profile, but allowing guests to explore a breadth of international, and, importantly, local wines. For a winery with a lens on Mornington specialities of pinot noir and chardonnay, there's a judicious and glorious selection of red and white Burgundy alongside; no fear of benchmarking here! The list has some wilder fringes too, like wine from 'The Pope of Arbois' Jacques Puffeney of Jura, or perhaps Herve Villemade's romorantin is more your
speed. Classics make the flesh of the list, and it's great to see Egon Müller, Ata Rangi and Chapoutier amongst the great quality offerings of the list. Spirits are also well-appointed here, for those seeking respite in cocktails. Very nicely done.


86 Ford St, Beechworth
(03) 5728 1786

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST Damian Moylan
WINEs ON LIST 318 (22 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($10-$30 by the glass)

Provenance chef-proprietor Michael Ryan and sommelier Damian Moylan, have created a synergy between kitchen and drinks that elevates this wine list into the stratosphere. Japanese influence in cuisine is finished with sake, light, fine reds, aromatic and textural whites, with an eye on delicacy and nuance writ large in this list. Indeed, the sake offering, with a focus on natural Junmai expressions, is superb, and impresses on drinkers that the breadth of Australian drinking culture is available here. Local wines from the northeast are proudly featured, so Billy Button, Sorrenberg, Giaconda, Castagna, Schmolzer & Brown and Pennyweight have their name in lights alongside carefully curated collections of white and red Burgundy, and, remarkably, a slew of JJ Prum riesling. It's evident that care and consideration is at its apex in the list; it's just wonderful to see such diversity and excitement here. Best of all, it fits the holistic culture of Provenance to a tee.

RACV City Club

501 Bourke St, Melbourne
(03) 9944 8000

CUISINE Australian Contemporary
WINE LIST Christian Maier
WINEs ON LIST 610 (22 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $ ($5.50-$29 by the glass)

Membership to the RACV City Club comes with the additional benefit of one of Australia's most remarkable wine lists. It's a selection steeped in the old school, with serious wines of marquee Australian producers, but also offers an undercurrent of emerging winemakers getting space amongst the doyens and doyennes of Australian wine. There's Mount Mary Quintet stretching back to the 1992 release, Petaluma's famed Cabernet through to 1990 then alongside these prestige wines, there's offerings of cult releases from Bindi, Bass Phillip and Domaine A, to name just a few. By the glass shows a sense of adventure, as does the Sommeliers Selection that rotates regularly to reflect the whim of these canny selectors. A Mystery Wine brings a sense of fun - let the sommelier team choose a bin end wine of pedigree and pay a variable fee for the selection. This is a list groaning under the weight of premium wine, made all the more remarkable for the setting. Brilliant.

Red Emperor

M10, Mid Level Level 2, Southgate Complex, 3 Southgate Ave, Melbourne
(03) 9699 4170

WINE LIST Raymond Cheung
WINEs ON LIST 234 (50 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($6-$21.50 by the glass)

Wonderful to see such depth and support for the Australian wine community here with names like Rockford, Henschke, Mount Langi and Giaconda finding themselves leading a list of stalwart wine producers and their 'best offerings'. Champagne is of course is adequately and carefully selected, while a suite of riesling, including a duo of cuvees from famed Dr Loosen, make for an appropriate start to match the flavours of Red Emperor's cuisine. Wade through the list and you'll find some wines with cellar age, including treats from Moss Wood and Mount Mary, though it's the collection of aged, fine Bordeaux that may get hearts racing. Powerhouse producers from Australia, including top wines of Penfolds, Elderton and Jim Barry, round out the shiraz offering, for those seeking some heft to finish their meal. A classically appointed wine list of depth and consideration awaits.

Red Spice QV

37 Artemis Lne, Melbourne
(03) 8660 6300

CUISINE South East Asian
WINE LIST Matthew Lamb
WINEs ON LIST 117 (21 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $ ($11-$18 by the glass)

Ideally matched to the cuisine of Red Spice QV, there's a raft of riesling, pinot gris/grigio, gewurztraminer and various iterations of sauvignon blanc. No slouches in this list, there's prime real estate taken up by some of the world's great, cool and interesting wine producers, with wines that are in ideal drinking windows. Local wines from Victorian younger generation winemakers are nestled in next to top flight producers like
Howard Park, Yalumba and Torbreck. If it's indie wineries you're after, then Bindi, Silent Way and Athletes of Wine, and many of their ilk, are dotted throughout this menu. There's a smattering of cellar matured wines amongst the younger fresher offerings, but best drinking here really is in the new releases or those with a year or so under their belt. Great to see so much attention to the Australian wine scene, and internationals included are chosen for quality cuvees, rather than name only.

Red Spice Road

27 McKillop St, Melbourne
(03) 9603 1601

CUISINE South East Asian
WINE LISTMatthew Lamb
WINEs ON LIST 167 (33 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($10-$29 by the glass)

Who isn't impressed by the magical Coravin device, and when applied to select, rare bottles, it's a boon to any wine list. Here, cult wines from JJ Prum, Rockford, Bass Phillip or Jura's high priest Jacques Puffeney, can be eked out into glass, though the regular by the glass offering is no slouch either. It's a list that does well to show drinkers where Australia and Victoria, particularly, is at with contemporary expressions of wine, but doesn't forget the drinker who want comfort in well-versed offerings
from Marlborough sauvignon blanc, Adelaide Hills chardonnay or southern France red blends. There's a dash of wild, natural wines amongst the more tried and tested options, which lends a little extra personality to drinking at Red Spice Road. Cocktails are also a highlight, and spirits and craft beer judiciously added to the wine offering. Lots to dig into here.

Rockpool Bar & Grill

3/8 Whiteman St, Melbourne
(03) 8648 1900

CUISINE Neil Perry
WINE LIST Sebastian Crowther MS / Ash Boburka
WINEs ON LIST 1500 (35 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($13-$134 by the glass)

It's lengthy, impressive and encyclopaedic in its coverage of global wine, from the brilliant by-the-glass offering (and don't miss the stupendous, rare, mature collection), through to brilliant digestifs, there's detail in nearly every category in this gigantic list. Of course, Australian wine is at the forefront with younger generation producers scattered through a list that celebrates history and evolution of Australian wine through the lens of its finest producers. Of course, there's lengthy offerings from Burgundy, Bordeaux, Rhone Valley, Champagne, with consideration
especially made for those looking to max out a credit card on something truly special. Enjoyable is also seeing the lesser-known with wines from Austria, South Africa and the Americas woven through the program. Mature wine is also a feature; there'd be few restaurants in Australia that cellar with such impunity as the Rockpool group. This wine list is magnificent in so many ways.


9/8 Whiteman St, Melbourne
(03) 8648 1999

WINE LIST Sebastian Crowther MS / Lisa Cardelli
WINEs ON LIST 800 (25 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($10-$33 by the glass)

There's no ambiguity about this wine list with its clear and direct focus on all things Italian. It's a decidedly brave and clever move in a city where fickle nature and customer desire sometimes override the motif of dining culture's best interests, and this list wears its heart on its Prada sleeve. There's an exploration at every turn, from obscurities of Italy's myriad indigenous grape varieties to smaller, lesser-sung wine regions, right through to the exciting collection of Australian winemakers who are dedicating their lives to Italian grape varieties, grown Down Under. It's great to see Jo Marsh of Billy Button getting airplay in a list alongside doyennes like Occhipinti and Foradori, as it is to know that Franciacorta has a big part headlining sparkling wines, despite a neat collection of Champagne. Indulge in the Italianophile nature of this truly outstanding, focussed list.

Royal Mail

98 Parker St, Dunkeld
(03) 5577 2241

CUISINE Australian
WINE LIST Peter Dillon/Matthew Lance
WINEs ON LIST 1250 (31 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($12-$255 by the glass)

A stupendous wine list in every sense, from remarkable, grand marque wine producers and exclusive cuvees, through to the incredible array of cellared gems that adorn this collection. It's a wine list that heavily supports local and Victorian wine producers, with selections that include multiple vintages of great wines from the likes of Best's, Crawford River and Seppelt, though if Domaine de la Romanee Conti's grand cru Burgundies are more your speed, there's a slew of magnums (and seemingly at great value!). The list treats diners to a cavalcade of fine wine, indeed there are few wine menus anywhere in Australia with this depth and personality. Highlights are many, but it's the high end producer focussed mini-listings that really draw the eye, with JJ Prum, Bass Phillip and Cheval Blanc just a few of the notables. No box is left unchecked here, with the avant garde of the wine world slotting in alongside the traditional, super premium. A truly outstanding collection here.


6 Melbourne Pl, Melbourne
(03) 9663 9882

CUISINE Armenian
WINE LIST Anna Healy
WINEs ON LIST 75 (17 by the glass)
WINE PRICES$ ($10-$25 by the glass)

A clever list that feels primped and preened with passion, showing off smaller wine producers, some eclectic offerings from Georgia, Lebanon and Armenia, with a host of wines that feel appropriately chosen for the nuances of Armenian cuisine. Aromatics whites are therefore a focus, as are light to medium bodied reds. It's great to see lesser-sung grape varieties like saperavi, baga, areni noir, shavkapito and malvasia making the collection here. It's a pretty exciting wine list to drink from when the choices are so broad and different, and though adventure might be the by-product, quality is evidently important in the choice of the producers
of all wines. Beer and spirits are also given due diligence, and for those
seeking a different kind of finish to the night, there's a brace of Armenian
brandy available. Plenty to celebrate here.

Shark Fin House

131 Little Bourke St, Melbourne
(03) 9663 1555

WINE LIST Shermen Cheung
WINEs ON LIST 300 (24 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($7-$12 by the glass)

A solid offering on this list, with a focus on Australian wine and hits from 'best' global wine regions. It's great to see a lot of young, fresh white wine attentively chosen to match a breadth of the cuisine, that being said, if fuller bodied red wines are your intent, there's Torbreck, Penfolds and Rockford, amongst others, to tickle your fancy. It's great  to see wines from high end artisan producers like Jasper Hill and Giaconda also in the mix, and for those seeking wines with a little extra maturity, there's a dedicated section for cellared wines, though canny selection would be prudent. It's great to see classic Australian wines woven into the menu with smart vintages of Mount Mary, Leeuwin Estate and Grosset noteworthy examples. A solid offering is found here.


25 Market Lne, Melbourne
(03) 9650 0848

CUISINE Japanese
WINE LIST Cimmarro Lau
WINEs ON LIST 220 (19 by the glass)
WINE PRICES$$ ($9-$25 by the glass)

It's evident there's great care and consideration taken with the selection for this list, and more so a respect for the art of matching drinks to the cuisine. Ipso, sake and shochu are exceptionally represented, bolstering an already excellent wine collection. Wines are typically from the more boutique end of the spectrum, but righteously you'll also find a 'reserve' section which includes Leeuwin Estate, Henschke and a tidy selection of Penfolds Bin 389. Champagne comes with some flair on this list too, particularly if you're after the grand marques of Krug, Salon or Dom Perignon. Great to see Japanese whisky also getting some attention, with drams from Hibiki, Hakashu and Yamazaki all available. A judiciously chosen wine menu.

Source Dining

72 Piper St, Kyneton
(03) 5422 2039

CUISINE Contemporary/Regional
WINE LIST Tim Foster
WINEs ON LIST 268 (16 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($9-$25 by the glass)

There's little doubt that the wine and drinks selections here of Tim Foster are thoughtfully considered and intuitively selected to cuisine and season. This shape-shifting wine list sees textural whites and lighter, savoury reds a highlight during Autumnal months, shifts focus to fuller bodied wines during winter, and lightens up over summertime. That being said, those that know, see subtle tweaks far more regularly as Foster identifies unique parcels and special wines to bring into the fold. It's a list that emphasises local wines from around the town of Kyneton, so Macedon Ranges producers are given top billing, which draws in the likes of Curly Flat, Granite Hills and Bindi. Other Victorian wine growing areas flesh out the list with carefully chosen, premium wines, but there's
plenty from around Australia and indeed, wonderful wines from marquee wine regions around the world, with a keen eye on chardonnay and pinot noir from really interesting, quality producers. A class list here.

Spice Temple Melbourne

3/8 Whiteman St, Melbourne
(03) 8679 1888

CUISINE Modern Chinese
WINE LIST Sebastian Crowther MS
WINEs ON LIST 100 (12 by the glass)
WINE PRICES$$ ($12-$21 by the glass)

The original list of just 100 wines, always perfectly in tune with the restaurant's take on Chinese food. The choice of wines is crucial to the list's success - it's a Hall of Famer as three times winner of Best Small List (100). An immaculately balanced list with a mouth-watering range of varietals.

Steak Ministry

39 Kingsway, Glen Waverley
(03) 9560 1818

CUISINE Steakhouse
WINE LIST Hamish Small
WINEs ON LIST 210 (24 by the glass)
WINE PRICES$$ ($10-$22 by the glass)

With a name like 'Steak Ministry' it's fairly obvious where most of the loyalties lie in selection for this wine list, but despite the focus on a spectrum of red wines it's pleasing to see sparkling wine, Champagne, some mature riesling and fuller-flavoured chardonnays all getting a good look-in. The heroes of this list really are found in the rouge coloured wines, however, and a feature page on cult winery Rockford is icing on
the cake for those seeking to max out on the synergy between judiciously charred meat and darker coloured wines. It's great to see a number of well-matured wines amongst the younger offerings, with Australian classics from Yalumba, Penfolds and Henschke stretching back into the 1990s. Wines and beers from the United States are also honed in on, in an homage to the great American steak houses, that form part of the restaurant's inspiration. Aptly chosen wines for the menu, it's great to see an old school sensibility at large.

Stokehouse St Kilda

30 Jacka Blvd, St Kilda
(03) 9525 5555

CUISINE Contemporary
WINE LIST Gavin Cremming
WINEs ON LIST 550 (34 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($10-$40 by the glass)

An utterly superb list that celebrates the diversity of Australian wine culture with a distillation of classic, avant garde and emerging wines and wine styles, amongst a tour de force of local and imported selections. It's a list that pays homage to a seaside location, seafood and sunshine, offering drinkers appropriately fresh, aromatic whites, marquee and lesser-known grower Champagne, and a brace of refreshing, younger,
lighter red wines in finely-chosen pinot noir from local and Burgundy
producers, crunchy reds of Italy and a sluice of gamay. Those seeking a top end sommelier experience will be pleased to see benchmark producers from all great growing regions, while those seeking fun and frolic can relish affordable alternatives from lesser-known, but high quality local, new-to-Australia varieties. It's a list that suggests intimate knowledge of contemporary dining, a keen eye on the kitchen and yet doesn't scrimp on the big-night-out drinking opportunities.


23 Bank Pl, Melbourne
(03) 9670 1777

CUISINE European
WINE LIST Florian Valieres
WINEs ON LIST 552 (44 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($11-$47 by the glass)

Winner of Australia's Best Wine List in 1999, Syracuse continues to delight its customers with an Italian-centric list that has great breadth around the wide world of wine. There are excellent examples of a huge range of varietals with high points being offered in Piedmont, Tuscany, Burgundy, America and Australia. A list of substance and character.

Taxi Kitchen

Federation Square, Cnr Flinders & Swanston St, Melbourne
(03) 9654 8808

CUISINE Modern Australian with SE Asian Flavours
WINE LIST Ben Preston
WINEs ON LIST 200 (18 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($10-$18 by the glass)

Wine lists that limit themselves to a certain theme can be undone by a lack of diversity, but Taxi Kitchen has aced their focus on Victorian wines. While Champagne does find its way into the wine collection, the rest of the offering is entirely from the local state, with an eye on established fine wine producers like Yarra Yering, Mount Mary and Craiglee found right alongside the likes of Luke Lambert, Jamsheed and
Polperro. The list covers all major grape varieties and wine styles, with a
keen eye for best producers and their best wines from best regions; there is no slack here. It's a list that offers drinkers a great exploration of the breadth and depth of Victoria's capabilities, and asserts that quality is at every turn. Great to see some cellared wines also part of the foundation here. Cocktails and beers are also worthy accessories to a dining experience. A strong vision realised here.

Ten Minutes By Tractor

1333 Mornington Flinders Rd, Main Ridge
(03) 5989 6455

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST Jacques Savary de Beauregard
WINEs ON LIST 1,000 (25 by the glass)
WINE PRICES$$$ ($11-$27 by the glass)

Surely the best ‘winery’ list in the country (on the planet)? Naturally, a wonderful array of the brilliant Ten Minutes Chardonnay and Pinot, but there is no hesitation to focus and feature others from the region and throughout the country, before they move to a list of Burgundies, red and white, that would knock the socks off most of the finest Burgundian restaurants. Worth travelling many miles for this list.

Tender Trap

266 Blackburn Rd, East Doncaster
(03) 9842 3466

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST Chris Moraitis
WINEs ON LIST 253 (26 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($10-$16 by the glass)

A traditional list where the real stars come from the Aussie Shiraz and Cabernets, but a list that is much more extensive than just that. Many of the offerings have several vintages available, giving diners their choice from an array of fine vintages. Italian and Spanish varietals will also bring a smile and have some older gems amongst them.

Terrace (The)

315 All Saints Rd, Wahgunyah
1800 021621

CUISINEContemporary European
WINE LIST Nicholas Brown / Chloe Earl
WINEs ON LIST 88 (13 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($10-$116 by the glass)

An ideal list for this north-eastern Victorian winery, with their own (All Saints) wines naturally dominant. Thoughtful selection by the glass, while the main body of the list ventures beyond regional borders and includes some top offshore producers, such as France’s Huet and New Zealand’s Huia. And of course, a great array of fortifieds.

Thousand Pound

82 Main St, Rutherglen
(03) 6032 8179

CUISINE Contemporary European
WINE LIST Nicholas Brown / Chloe Earl
WINEs ON LIST 108 (14 by the glass)
WINE PRICES$$ ($8-$120 by the glass)

Anyone still under the misapprehension that Rutherglen is a fortified star only is in for a treat. This list will open up a new world of local wines, though there are more than sufficient selections for those wishing to venture further. Good pricing might sway dinners to give the locals a good go. And of course, there are those wonderful fortifieds to finish.


20 Duckboard Pl, Melbourne
(03) 9650 3155

CUISINE Modern Indian
WINE LIST Travis Howe
WINEs ON LIST346 (19 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($9-$42 by the glass)

A list which rightly proclaims its allegiance to Italian wines – an intriguing alliance for Indian food – but which concludes with a symphony of Burgundian favourites. One may need to tread carefully for pairings but no question that there are many superb wines. An impressive collection of Austrian whites is just one more reason to like this left field list.

Two Buoys

209 Point Nepean Rd, Dromana
(03) 5981 8488

CUISINE Tapas & Wine Bar
WINE LIST Joshua Ball / Lisa Minter
WINEs ON LIST 350 (19 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($8-$15 by the glass)

A list which concentrates on quality locals, especially from Victoria, but there are plenty of interesting options from around the world – Argentinian Pinot Noir anyone - and numerous older wines. Good quality by the glass and an extensive selection of halves and magnums, but what makes this list really special is the fabulous value it offers.

Underwood Wine Bar

181 St Georges Rd, Fitzroy North
(03) 9489 5764

CUISINE Charcuterie / Cheese / Snacks
WINE LISTMichael Underwood
WINEs ON LIST 88 (18 by the glass)
WINE PRICES$$ ($10-$16 by the glass)

Don’t expect the usual suspects when you delve into this list. Rather, everything from the by the glass selection, the array of magnums and the wines throughout is from the exciting, emerging and decidedly left field corner. Wines to thill. The collection of spirits et al are also something special. All wines are local.


Rear 681 Glenferrie Rd, Melbourne
(03) 9078 5492

CUISINE Venetian
WINE LIST David Wickwar
WINEs ON LIST 83 (23 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($10-$19 by the glass)

A wine list to transport you to the canals of Venice. Venetian wines take pride of place here, but these are well supplemented by local efforts using Italian varieties and some more traditional offerings from around the country. There is also a first class collection of spirits, beers and assorted Italian delicacies.

Wine And The Country

1/97 Vincent St, Daylesford
(03) 5348 3756

CUISINE Charcuterie & Cheese
WINE LIST Jennifer Latta / Bronwyn Liddelow
WINEs ON LIST400 (10 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($9-$18 by the glass)

A brave, bold and exciting wine list that taps straight into a global zeitgeist yet shows a sensibility for selecting some of Victoria's finest local wines. It's a list that's focussed on grower-producers, artisan winemakers and those working with sustainable growing practices and lo-fi winemaking. The collection pairs cult wines of obscure European wine regions with the stalwarts of Australia's fine wine scene, with impressive selections from Bindi, Bannockburn, Dalwhinnie and Mount Langi, to name just a few. The international scope is quite jaw-dropping, with rare finds from Beaujolais, Swartland, Jura, Loire Valley and various Spanish regions. Indeed, the list does come with the thrill and pitfall in equal measure of some seriously left of centre wine producers, so best place yourself in the hands of the effervescent and clever proprietor, Jennifer Latta, which is part of the joy of exploring this thrilling list. An original, brilliant wine selection.

Woodland House

78 Williams Rd, Prahran
(03) 9525 2178

CUISINE Contemporary
WINE LIST Hayden McFarland
WINEs ON LIST 384 (26 by the glass)
WINE PRICES$$$ ($15-$45 by the glass)

A substantial and well-appointed wine list that celebrates the upper echelons of local and international fine wine culture. It's a rarified collection that opens with a mix of classic and grower Champagnes, sweeps through high end Australian riesling, offers drinkers some excellent, mature chardonnay from both local and Burgundian sources, and works through classic red wine regions with Bordeaux, Rhone Valley, Piedmont and Burgundy showing sweet spots. Speaking of sweet, the dessert wine list, or rather, 'Gold Wine' as it is listed here, is excellent and worth a stray into. By the glass selections are impressive and a Coravin unleashes some exceptional drops that might otherwise remain unseen in cellar. Stray into the well-cellared Australian red wines where Wendouree, Moss Wood and Majella are some of the highlights, amongst many. An elegant summary of Australia's high position in global fine wine culture, distilled through this list.