New South Wales Winner



252 George St, Sydney, NSW
(02) 9240 3000

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LISTDavid Wood/Franck Moreau Ms
WINEs ON LIST 1,140 (45 by the glass)

Any establishment where one can enjoy a glass of 1995 Château d’Yquem for less than $100 has to be a bit special, and Est. is just that. The Yquem is part of their Coravin program, which allows them to offer stunning, rare and aged wines, as well as their usual impressive by-the-glass collection. A 2010 Chave Hermitage Blanc, a 2004 Jim Barry Armagh Shiraz or a 2000 Château Canon anyone?

The extensive array of Champagnes is divided by villages, which I suspect means little to most, but the names and vintages will not. A fine selection of great names, emerging growers and brilliantly mature wines. If you can’t find something thrilling here, then you do not like Champagne. But then with this list, the same could be said for most regions. It does not follow the well-trodden path. If you want to experience what a region like Jura can offer, I doubt that anywhere in Australia would provide a better opportunity to do so.

Chardonnay and pinot noir excel, and given the way the prices in Burgundy are skyrocketing, jumping on this list might be the best value pinotphiles will see in their lifetime. Ken gargett



Overseas Passenger Terminal, The Rocks, NSW
(02) 9251 5600

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST Amanda Yallop
WINEs ON LIST 520 (30 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($365-$10 by the glass)

Quay's exquisite wine list matches the food of chef, Peter Gilmore, and the memorable views of the Harbour. Amanda Yallop and her team contine to rate among Australia's finest practitioners and the list among the country's best. Consider the range of prices in the list by the glass, the stunning array of champagnes, the freshness that the cutting edge producers add to what is offered. Always a key part of a memorable evening at this restaurant.

Cirrus Dining

23 Barangaroo Ave, Barangaroo, NSW
(02) 9220 0111

WINE LISTNick Hildebrandt
WINEs ON LIST 700 (40 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($50-$9 by the glass)

This list is beautifully crafted and thoughtfully assembled and provides a most interesting view of the wine world, not just through the usual lens, but with an eye to the new and emerging style. A wonderful array of varieties from all over the world with many new offerings as well as the classic producers.  SO expect to find a good range of sparkling in addition to Champagne. If you are curious about the beautiful Jura region in France there are the most wines I have ever seen listed here from this interesting region. A very good wine by the glass range with different sizes too from this recently established restaurant. Exciting.


12 Micron

Tower 1, 100 Barangaroo Ave, Barangaroo, NSW
(02) 8322 2075

CUISINE Australian
WINE LIST Riccardo Guzzardo
WINEs ON LIST 559 (32 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($29-$12 by the glass)

You can drink well at 12 Micron with its flavour focus on Australia with enough international wine to add depth. It's augmented by a good by the glass selection and with Coravin means tasting a top pinot noir or Italian nebbiolo. Alas, the list is let down by too many spelling errors and inconsistencies creating an all-too-obvious distraction.

360 Bar & Dining

Level 4, 100 Market St, Sydney, NSW
(02) 8223 3883

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST Erick Tuesta
WINEs ON LIST 450 (43 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($149-$12 by the glass)

When the 'by the glass' offerings include Dom Perignon, Grange, Yquem, Rockford and their ilk, it is clear that they are making a statement of quality. A list which focuses on the classics and traditionally popular styles but plenty of emerging excitement as well - Japan's Grace, for example.


60 Bayswater Rd, Rushcutters Bay, NSW
0435 940 884

CUISINE Contemporary
WINE LIST Gabrielle Webster
WINEs ON LIST 27 (11 by the glass)
WINE PRICES$$ ($14-$10 by the glass)

Good things do come in small packages. This nifty wine list for one. It features 27 bottles, all bar 5 are under $100 and it packs a punch. Almost half are offered by the glass and while there's an Italian focus, it's not parochial. There are a few bottles of hipster juice such as Radikon ribolla or vin jaune but equally appealing Foradori Fontanasanta or a Pittnauer blaufrankisch with a splash from Australia offering local context. All up, a ripsnorter.


238 Castlereagh St, Sydney, NSW
(02) 9098 1111

CUISINE Modern Greek
WINEs ON LIST108 (22 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($19-$13 by the glass)

As a Greek restaurant of note, there's enough assyrtiko, vidiano, agiorgitiko and xinomavro on Alpha's list to keep purists happy. Such offerings are off-set by a neat mix of mostly Australian wine pitched well to the dining options. Plenty of aromatic whites from riesling to sauvignon blanc plus lighter-bodied reds right through to full-bodied shiraz. And the reasonable pricing is another bonus.


176 Cumberland St, The Rocks, NSW
(02) 9250 6123

CUISINE Australian
WINE LIST Matt Herod
WINEs ON LIST384 (23 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($36-$16 by the glass)

There is a smattering of fine selections from offshore but the focus here is very much on top Australian offerings. The 'by the glass' collection, which includes some under coravin, is more eclectic - Austrian Gruner to Hunter Semillon; Clare Dolcetto to Mendoza Malbec.


5/23 Barangaroo Ave, Barangaroo, NSW
(02) 9188 1581

WINE LIST Alex Gibson / Enis Guner
WINEs ON LIST 60 (27 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $ ($18-$10 by the glass)

How do you introduce diners to the joy of Turkish wines? Offer them as a taste. That's the direction here but with clear headings such as light, fresh and crisp, or fragrant and vivacious, or bolder and earthy well it makes you want to drink them. It's an inviting way to be immersed in the rich culture of both the food and wine. So if you haven't tried narince or kalecik karasi or even syrah from Turkey, here's the opportunity. The list is personalised with quotes from Anatolia written by Anason chef Somer Sivrioglu and David Dale.


69 Willoughby Rd, Crows Nest, NSW
(02) 9437 3700

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST Christian Blair
WINEs ON LIST 159 (21 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($26-$12.6 by the glass)

Part bar, part bistro with a drinks list to satisfy both. A seriously neat gin selection entices so too the gems offered by the glass. It's a savvy, small list that injects personality and interest via headings such as For Lovers of Texture or A little Something Different. And it delivers.

The Apollo

44 Macleay St, Potts Point, NSW
(02) 8354 0888

WINE LIST Sam Christie
WINEs ON LIST 133 (14 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($17-$11.5 by the glass)

A small list pitched perfectly to the menu, which means there's a selection of choice Greek wine and Australian mostly. It's easy to make a selection by following the headings, which are driven by the palate. Light & Clean for the crisper whites think riesling and assyrtiko right through to Big Reds such as shiraz and xinomavro.

Aqua Dining

Paul and Northcliff Sts, Milsons Point, NSW

02) 9964 9998

WINE LIST Ben Cummings / Biagio Castaldo
WINEs ON LIST 331 (51 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($260-$14 by the glass)

Italian food at a fab harbour-side location inspires the wine list. Expect a choice, diverse array of Italian and Australian wines starting with an excellent by the glass selection followed by a pulsating premium list thanks to that handy device, Coravin. It means a glass of Gaja barbaresco or Grange is do-able. While Tuscany and Piedmont vie for poll-position with its reds, there's so much deliciousness dotted throughout. Bravo.

Aria Sydney

1 Macquarie St, Sydney, NSW
(02) 8277 8555

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST Alex Kirkwood
WINEs ON LIST 1,450 (67 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($230-$17 by the glass)

Already a benchmark, Aria's list always impresses thank to its depth, attention to detail and sheer drinking pleasure on offer. Its extensive by the glass offering is something else boosted by a stunning compilation of iconic Australian and international wines. Start with youthful English fizz, J.J. Prum riesling or Gravner Anfora or something with age perhaps a 1996 Best's Bin O or 2001 Cos d'Estournel. The entire list follows the same stylish local and international theme. Wow. Just wow.

Ash Street Cellar

1 Ash St, Sydney, NSW
(02) 9240 3000

CUISINE European
WINE LIST Jean Charles Mahe / Franck Moreau
WINEs ON LIST301 (35 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($50-$12 by the glass)

Here's a list that ripples with personality on every page with the sole intention of taking diners on a vinous journey through some of the world's key wine regions via texture and flavour. For example, following the heading 'citrus driven wine from our own backyard' is where to find Hunter Valley semillon or Clare Valley riesling and under 'crisp and grassy' is sauvignon blanc from Australia and New Zealand. In other words, Ash St Cellars' list acts like a mini wine guide with most stops via Europe and France the main port. Although geographically challenged on occasion - Valle d'Aosta is nowhere near the Mediterranean Sea, the descriptions work well. Hit the red wine of Spain, Portugal and Italy selection and find delicious mencia, nebbiolo or garnacha under 'tannic and earthy with crunchy red berries'. Special mention, too, for the diverse offerings by the glass, which includes the option to order a carafe.


5 Kensington St, Chippendale, NSW
(02) 8277 8555

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST Tim Watkins
WINEs ON LIST 140 (16 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($22-$16 by the glass)

Automata's list focusses on local and international artisanal producers, most of whom respect their land and want their wines to reflect a sense of place. It's why there are gems throughout and names such as Foradori, Lark Hill, Pyramid Valley, Radikon and Ravensworth grace the pages. There are unfamiliar producers next to the well-known, familiar varieties alongside rarer ones, which makes this compelling and exciting.

Bacco Osteria

1,2-12 Angel Pl, Sydney, NSW
(02) 9235 3383

WINE LIST Alexis Ortado and Andrew Cibej
WINEs ON LISt 68 (11 by the glass)
WINE PRICES$$ ($17-$11 by the glass)

An Italian focus, reasonable pricing and a straight-forward by the glass selection all add to this small, uncomplicated list. It could easily be more adventurous and diverse but that doesn't mean you can't drink well with names like Occhipinti, Graci, Oddero and Bibi Graetz included.

Balcon By Tapavino

17 Bligh St, Sydney, NSW
(02) 9223 6176

WINE LIST Lee Hayward
WINEs ON LISt 400 (26 by the glass)
WINE PRICES$$ ($21-$9 by the glass)

While the colour coded hieroglyphics are meant to help navigate across this Spanish infused list, and some might find it useful, they look cumbersome and do clutter the pages. Regardless, there are excellent wines within. Dive in to discover Iberian joys listed under regional headings or with sherry, under various styles such as fino or oloroso. Plenty of diversity and delicious wines offered by the glass.


80 Pyrmont St, Pyrmont, NSW
(02) 9657 9129

CUISINE Modern Italian
WINE LIST Stefano Satta
WINEs ON LIST 600 (30 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$($26-$12 by the glass)

While the selection of Australian wines is very good, Balla's list is a tribute to all things Italian and what's on offer is simply stunning. Travel up and down the country through this list from the top at Valle d'Aosta with some Les Cretes right down to Sicily with a glorious line-up of nerello mascalese. Its Tuscan and Piedmontese selection is mind-blowing.


185 Elizabeth St, Sydney, NSW
(02) 9283 7098

CUISINE Modern European
WINE LIST Fergus Montgomery
WINEs ON LIST 259 (41 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($23-$12 by the glass)

It's neither too big nor too small. Bambini offers a Goldilock's list - it's just right. It manages to pitch choice, well-priced Australian bottles to Euro wines largely from Italy, Spain, Greece and of course, France. A thoughtful and plentiful by the glass section is augmented by some cool half-bottle options.


33 Barangaroo Ave, Barangaroo, NSW
(02) 8072 7037

CUISINE Mediterranean
WINE LISTRebecca Lines
WINEs ON LIST 185 (18 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($18-$10 by the glass)

Who knew so many gorgeous vermouths were available? Well, Banksii certainly. While the drink is the inspiration behind this bar-cum-bistro, pouring about 40 by the glass, you can also imbibe in other spirits, cocktails or some good vino. On the latter, there's enough champagne and bubbles to keep fizz fans content plus a sterling selection of whites and reds.

Bar H Dining

80 Campbell St, Surry Hills, NSW
(02) 9280 1980

CUISINE Japanese
WINE LISTJulian Izzillo
WINEs ON LIST 120 (30 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($20-$7 by the glass)

The joy of a small wine list. One that's tied in neatly to the Japanese cuisine so it features aromatic whites and reds, all with flavour and texture, too. There's also an emphasis on sustainable, organic and biodynamic producers so expect to find Yangarra, Giaconda, Milton and Laurent Barth in the cool mix. And the sake selection entices too with many offered by the glass.


33-37 Echopoint Rd, Katoomba, NSW
(02) 4782 3653

CUISINE Casual Modern Australian
WINE LIST Andres Aragon
WINEs ON LIST 66 (2 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $ ($15-$8 by the glass)

A small list showcasing every drop including beers and ciders from New South Wales. If you think there isn't diversity here, you would be wrong. There's plenty which is why there's vermentino and albarino alongside semillon and chardonnay. Or sangiovese and tempranillo comfortable among the shiraz and cabernet sauvignons. Oh and it's a steal too - all wines bar two are well-under $100.

The Bathers Pavilion

4 The Esplanade, Balmoral, NSW
(02) 9969 5050

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST Sean Boyle
WINEs ON LIST 300 (17 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($25-$14 by the glass)

A killer view, a comfortable dining room and modern Australian flavours on show means a wine list to match. Tick to all that at Bather's Pavilion with its compact and considered focus on mostly French varieties locally grown and from the heartland. There are splashes of exotica too think Girlan pinot bianco, Simao & Co tempranillo and Massolino Barolo.


35 Barangaroo Ave, Barangaroo, NSW
(02) 8587 5400

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST Matt Dunne
WINEs ON LIST 350( 25 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($95-$17 by the glass)

Given the hype surrounding the opening of the three-level Barangaroo House with its high-profile restaurateur Matt Moran setting up distinct dining options on each floor, the main restaurant Bea, with its 180-seat capacity, is bound to be in the spot-light for some time. As to the wine list, it's a manageable and pleasing mix of 350 bottles featuring a solid offering of spirits, cocktails and an excellent by the glass section. Mostly, wines are listed under variety except the slightly ambiguous heading Soon To Be Famous. Yet there gems such as Oliver's Taranga small batch fiano, Yangarra mourvedre and Dal Forno valpolicella reside.

Beach Restaurant

Lot 9, Lawson St, Byron Bay, NSW
1300 583 766

CUISINE Mediterranean
WINEs ON LIST 235 (15 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($19-$11 by the glass)

This list aims to please in several way hence some varieties get their own section think chardonnay comprising Australian and French same with pinot noir or the very cool Expressions of Sangiovese. Or head on a vinous journey through texture and flavour as most wines feature under headings such as light, medium or full-bodied whites and reds. Some real treats in the mix, too.

Bells at Killcare

107 The Scenic Rd, Killcare Heights, NSW
(02) 4349 7000

WINE LIST Alessio Rubini
WINEs ON LIST 300 (35 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($66-$13 by the glass)

A love of Italian wine flows throughout this smart list and thanks to Coravin, several are offered by the glass, top stuff like Jermann chardonnay or Felsina Chianti Classico. Plenty to swoon over but it doesn't stop there. There's joy to be found with the French and Australian wines with other gems dotted throughout think Grace Koshu or Donnhoff riesling. Now, where to start?


Sydney Opera House, Bennelong Point, NSW
(02) 9240 8000

CUISINE Modern Australian Cuisine
WINE LIST Russ Mills / Ben Woodward / Jeremy Croft
WINEs ON LIST 318 (4 by the glass)

The exclusive address of one of Australia's most recognisable buildings, the Sydney Opera House and its lauded restaurant means a wine list has a lot to live up to. It does. Although such exclusivity comes at a high price, gee you can drink well here. While it plays safe with most varietal headings of the French kind, with choice offerings though, there are jewels elsewhere. There's Mayford in the tempranillo section, Luke Lambert staking a claim with nebbiolo or a glass of hard to find tripe.iscariot.


27 O'Connell St, Sydney, NSW
(02) 8214 0505

CUISINE Contemporary
WINE LIST Nick Hildebrandt / Ben Gardiner
WINEs ON LIST 1,200 (50 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($40-$8 by the glass)

Bentley's pitch-perfect selection highlights the classics, the classy, the renegades and more. There's no question the list featuring 1000-plus bottles will send shivers down your spine because what's on offer is first and foremost, delicious drinking. The spotlight is on Australia and France but there's so much in-between Spanish garnacha, Italian pecorino or wild ferment assyrtiko from Greece for example. Discover more than vin jaune with fine choices of chardonnay, savagnin, pinot noir, poulsard and trousseau from the Jura. There's a wicked collection of spirits, an inspiring by the glass selection including gems featured under Fine & Rare and mini-verticals throughout from Selosse, Keller to Mount Mary.


Level 1, 2 Kalinya St, Newport, NSW
(02) 9240 3000

CUISINE Seafood Brasserie
WINE LIST Andres Aragon Perez/Franck Moreau
WINEs ON LIST 720 (27 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($95-$11 by the glass)

Another instalment from the tireless Merivale Group, which sees the Newport pub revamped into a stylish brasserie and bar simply called Bert's. It would be easy to have a list that plays safe but its 700-strong bottle collection offers excellence on every page. It kick starts with a spot-on by the glass selection, a raft of champagnes and mini-verticals add another depth such as Jim Barry The Florita riesling, Brokenwood ILR reserve semillon, Clonakilla shiraz-viognier and in the iconic shiraz section, Penfolds Grange starting at 1969.

Bibo Wine Bar

7 Bay St, Double Bay, NSW
(02) 9362 4680

CUISINE Mediterranean/Portuguese
WINE LIST Louella Mathews
WINEs ON LIST 334 (36 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($58-$8 by the glass)

If variety is the spice of life, then Bibo will put a smile on your face. The list is a delight because it balances Australian wines with enough Euro diversity with a range of styles from blends, skin-contact to fortifieds. While the by the glass section rocks, a few more from Portugal would really round it out given the cuisine on offer.

Biota Dining

18 Kangaloon Rd, Bowral, NSW
(02) 4862 2005

CUISINE Australian
WINE LIST Ben Shephard
WINEs ON LIST 134 (15 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($18-$11 by the glass)

Sipping on seasonal cocktails, made with botanicals from the Southern Highland, sets the tone for the experience one has when dining at this Bowral gem.  Regional wines are worthy champions at Biota, a restaurant that showcases the beauty and purity of the local wines.  Its reach extends to wider NSW and the Canberra District, where it also celebrates the quality found in these neighbouring districts, plus there are also worthy inclusions from Victoria, Western Australia, Tasmanian and South Australia.  I suspect that you could have no better experience of the wines of Southern NSW than when dining here.

Bishop Sessa

527 Crown St, Surry Hills, NSW
(02) 8065 7223

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST Erez Gordon / Sarah Birch
WINEs ON LIST 200 (31 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($49-$9 by the glass)

Bishop Sessa has put a lot of thought into their wine list which is adventurous and interesting with some lesser known yet quality producers mingling with some of the more noted and known names. The wine by the glass list provides the perfect opportunity to try something new if you are tempted and at an affordable price. If you want to really relax and put yourself in the capable hands of the chef and sommelier there is an excellent chefs menu with matched wines.  Perfect!

Bistro Rex

Shop 1, 50-52 Macleay St, Potts Point, NSW
(02) 9332 2100

WINE LIST Josh Dunne
WINEs ON LIST 224 (21 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($24-$11 by the glass)

This recently opened establishment really waves the French flag proudly. And why not, a wine list showcasing all that we love about French wine and packed with gorgeous offerings including most of the grape varieties and French wine regions one can think of and at prices to suit every pocket. The wine by the glass list is very affordable and a good place to start, particularly with the lunch menu but do peruse the full list because there are plenty of gems included.

Bivianos Dural

628 Old Northern Rd, Dural, NSW
(02) 9651 2022

CUISINE Italian and Seafood
WINE LIST Hannah Webb
WINEs ON LIST 182 (27 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $ ($38-$10 by the glass)

A very affordable and diverse range of beverage options awaits on this beaut wine list at Bivianos Dural. An extensive range of cocktails and mocktails to start with before delving into a good range of quality producers and wine styles and varieties, both from Australia and abroad. Whether a casual lunch or a special celebration dinner, there is something to suit every occasion. Quality wines by the glass in two sizes and unusual but welcome, there is even a choice of Moscato’s given the huge current popularity of this wine style.

Black Bar & Grill

80 Pyrmont St, Pyrmont, NSW
(02) 9777 9109

CUISINE Steak House
WINEs ON LIST 1,000 (38 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($288-$15 by the glass)

This detailed, extensive, thoroughly thought out and beautifully presented wine list has virtually everything one could hope for in a wine list and something for everyone.  The main list not only provides a who's who's and what's what in the world of wine, it also provides interesting information about the wines, or the producers, complete with website links if you are really keen to follow up and discover more. If you are not wanting to spend as much time perusing the wine list, one need go no further than the excellent wine by the glass list which offers a diverse and interesting range and includes a great selection of rarer wines available using the Coravin system. From icons to emerging, classic varieties to the lesser known, recent and aged examples, it is all here and if you are wondering what English sparkling wine is all about, there are even a couple of these on the list too.


416 King St, Newtown, NSW
(02) 9557 7699

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST Amanda Cleal
WINEs ON LIST 51 (15 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($17-$12 by the glass)

A beautifully put together concise, yet varied, interesting and innovative wine list.  There is an exciting beer and cider list, and it is clear how much thought and effort has been put into this list by the well thought out wine by the glass list that provides a great variety of wine style options.  The wine list itself, though small, is cleverly put together, affordable and approachable with so many great choices that one will want to keep returning to this fabulous restaurant.

Boathouse On Blackwattle Bay

123 Ferry Rd, Glebe, NSW
(02) 9518 9011

WINE LIST Joe Turnaturi
WINEs ON LIST 187 (21 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($42-$14 by the glass)

Relax and take in the stunning water views but do spend a little time looking through this well selected and varied wine list. Many Australian and international wine regions are represented and high quality examples of a wide range of varieties and styles have been chosen for your enjoyment. There is a great range of affordable and interesting wines, as well as some top of the range wines, all perfectly matched to the seafood focussed cuisine. A great little wine by the glass or carafe selections also provides some great choice.

Botanic Wine Garden

Shop 3, Garrison Building, 26 Clarence St, Port Macquarie, NSW
(02) 6584 3685

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST Tristan Tomlinson
WINEs ON LIST 47 (25 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($30-$9 by the glass)

This thoroughly Australian menu and wine list for this newly opened restaurant exude personality and flair. Showcasing quality producers from a wide range of Australian regions one can be assured of a most enjoyable food and wine dining experience.

Bridge Room

44 Bridge St, Sydney, NSW
(02) 9247 7000

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST Benoit Jackman
WINEs ON LIST 170 (15 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($38-$16 by the glass)

A well selected list of quality wines and quality producers, from both home and abroad, provides a very solid yet concise list of wine options. There is a wide and interesting range of varieties to choose from if you are keen to try something different. A very good selection of Italian reds to complement the cuisine is a highlight and there are some nice aged wines on offer as well.

Bronte Road Bistro

282 Bronte Rd, Waverley, NSW
(02) 9389 3028

WINE LIST Stewart Parsons / Sophie Molard
WINEs ON LIST 88 (13 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($15-$10 by the glass)

A French focussed wine list pairs beautifully with the French themed cuisine. A choice of great wines awaits, both for everyday dining and for more special occasions. The wine by the glass list is small but well thought out, covers the main wine styles and certainly are at affordable prices.  In amongst the French wines are some other gems too from Tasmanian Riesling to Mendoza Malbec. Plenty to enjoy here.

Buon Ricordo

108 Boundary St, Paddington, NSW
(02) 9360 6729

WINE LIST Daniel Marcella
WINEs ON LIST235 (13 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($35-$17 by the glass)

No matter what the current food fashion, who doesn’t crave some good Italian food on a regular basis.  You’ll certainly have that craving satisfied here with a comprehensive, yet not predictable Italian menu and a really comprehensive list of great Italian wines to match.

Café Sydney

Customs House, 5th Floor, 31 Alfred St, Circular Quay, NSW
(02) 9251 8683

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST Simon Curkovic
WINEs ON LIST 210 (47 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($30-$16 by the glass)

Hats off to Australia with this primarily Australian focused wine list. Though not extensive, the wine list has a great selection of wines from around Australia, celebrating the best of the regions and their varietal representatives. Given the spectacular views at Cafe Sydney, this nice tight wine list features most of the varieties and styles you would hope to see, and enables a careful choice without being diverted from the view for too long. Be assured that if you are out for a celebration, the list includes a good selection of Champagne and some great museum selections.


1 Sunderland Ave (Lyne Park), Rose Bay, NSW
(02) 9371 0555

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LISTXavier Vigier
WINEs ON LIST 844 (89 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($407-$13 by the glass)

A comprehensive and extensive wine list with a good balance of top Australian and international producers. The wine by the glass list is very strong with a very tempting range of variety, region, price and even two glass sizes on offer. The list of half bottles too is extensive and is a great inclusion to add some additional choice to the list. All quality producers, from Bordeaux and Burgundy to Tasmania, one can be assured of a stunning wine to match the stunning view.


McCarrs Creek Rd & Yulong Ave, Terrey Hills, NSW
(02) 9450 1777

WINE LIST Stefano Piscitello
WINEs ON LIST 55 (15 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($15-$10 by the glass)

Though a small wine list, this almost totally Italian focussed list is certainly not left wanting. Italy produces an incredibly diverse range of varieties and wines and many of them are found here. A mouth-watering offer from Arneis to Nero d’Avola, Sangiovese and Montepulciano just to name a few.  And if you want to let someone else do the choosing, a 5 course degustazione with beautifully matched Italian wines might be in order.


122-124 Keira St, Wollongong, NSW
(02) 4226 4855

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST Simon Evans / Kirby Moller
WINEs ON LIST 100 (14 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($15-$11 by the glass)

Caveau successfully brings together a wide range of wines from a wide range of Australian wine regions, some not often seen on wine lists but well deserving of a place and recognition. The beer list too is great for those of us who love to try something local rather than conventional with a good range of boutique brews available. A few choice international wines are comfortably interspersed through what is a well-crafted and well thought out list.

The Cellar

2090 Broke Rd, Pokolbin, NSW
(02) 4998 7584

CUISINE Mediterranean
WINE LIST Janet Wright
WINEs ON LIST 90 (16 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($15-$9 by the glass)

The Cellar has been well established in the heart of the Hunter Valley for a number of years and its wine list is as fresh as ever.  Unsurprisingly, wines from the iconic Hunter Valley are showcased and indeed what could be better than a refreshing glass of Semillon on a warm summer day. But the Hunter is clearly more than Semillon and Shiraz these days with a number of other varieties now being produced, providing a very diverse local offer. The wine by the glass list too is a great place to start and is very well priced.


Shop 88, 80 Pyrmont St, Pyrmont, NSW
(02) 9566 2328

CUISINE Cantonese
WINE LIST Billy Wong
WINEs ON LIST 621 (34 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($26-$9 by the glass)

This list caters to a range of dining experiences.  The wine by the glass list is approachable and affordable and there are many other wine and beverage choices for diners looking for a more casual lunch time or evening Chinese dining experience.  For those who are after an absolutely first rate experience there are exceptional wines on offer here from the world’s most renowned producers. A stunning array of 16 vintages of Grange, the earliest 1954 and 21 of Domaine de la Romanée-Conti are showcased here.

Charred Kitchen & Bar

1-5 New St, Orange, NSW
(02) 6363 1580

CUISINE International Share Plate
WINE LISTDavid Collins
WINEs ON LIST 457 (73 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($25-$9 by the glass)

It was very easy to get excited about this wine and drinks list from the outset with an incredible, almost dizzying, list of beers from pale ale, to stout, to spiced and fruit options to open the list and an almost as impressive list of whisky’s to finish. Not to be outdone however, the extensive wine list has been well crafted, underpinned unapologetically by regional wines from Orange and well supported by a wealth of other Australian wines, both classic and emerging styles. The wine by the glass list is varied, interesting, affordable and approachable, not relying on the usual inclusions. If you are looking further afield, there are plenty of international wines on offer, including a reasonable array of Bordeaux reds which is becoming more and more unusual. A good choice too of some older vintages.

China Doll

4/6 Cowper Wharf Rd, Woolloomooloo, NSW
(02) 9380 6744

CUISINE Modern Asian
WINE LIST Clint Hillery
WINEs ON LIST 132 (16 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($18-$11 by the glass)

The China Doll offers superb views, excellent cuisine and a terrific list of wines to match. The wine list is well put together, providing high quality locally produced wines interspersed with equally high quality wines from abroad. Included in this concise list is a great selection too of sustainable, organic and biodynamic wines so all the bases are covered here. Definitely a great wine list for all occasions, budgets and tastes.

China Lane

2 Angel Pl, Sydney, NSW
(02) 9231 3939

CUISINE Modern Asian
WINE LIST Clint Hillery
WINE ON LIST 100 (13 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($18-$12 by the glass)

China Lane has skillfully managed to combine some very prestigious and expensive wines with many other high quality but lesser known wines at affordable prices into this beautifully concise wine list. It is just crammed with options, many “Asian food friendly” and if a wine by the glass is in order, this selection though small gives great variety and quality.

Chiswick At The Gallery

1 Art Gallery Rd, Sydney, NSW
(02) 9225 1819

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST Matt Dunne
WINE ON LIST 65 (27 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($25-$10 by the glass)

It is always great to see a wine list that does not rely on length but on thoughtful, careful choice to provide a wonderfully crafted list combining both the well-known stars of the wine world and the newer rising stars. This is such a list with diversity and interest and with wine styles and pricing to suit all budgets, tastes and occasions.

Chiswick Wollhara

65 Ocean St, Woollahra, NSW
(02) 8388 8688

CUISINE Contemporary
WINE LIST Brittany Villafane
WINEs ON LIST 87 (25 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($35-$12 by the glass)

A really fresh wine list to match to fresh, seasonally changing garden menu. Exuding personality, the list opens with a great list of beer options and continues with innovative, alternative and natural wine options comfortably alongside the more conventional and classic.  So whether you want to be adventurous and experiment with something new or feel more comfortable with the more well known, you’ll find it here. With plenty of choice options by the glass, carafe and bottle, you can be assured that the wines have been carefully and thoughtfully chosen.

Cho Cho San

73 Macleay St, Potts Point, NSW
(02) 9331 6601

CUISINE Japanese Izakaya
WINE LIST Sam Christie
WINEs ON LIST 116 (13 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($16-$11 by the glass) 

If you’ve ever wondered what sake was all about, this is the place to find out.  Sakes abound on this Japanese inspired restaurant’s wine list as do Japanese beers and whiskeys.   It gets even better though with a beautifully and cleverly put together wine list with a clear eye to quality.  The range and interest here will keep you coming back for the drinks list alone.


10/23 Barangaroo Ave, Barangaroo, NSW
(02) 9220 0111

WINE LIST Nick Hildebrandt
WINEs ON LIST700 (40 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ (50-$9 by the glass)

This list is beautifully crafted and thoughtfully assembled and provides a most interesting view of the wine world, not just through the usual lens, but with an eye to the new and emerging style. A wonderful array of varieties from all over the world with many new offerings as well as the classic producers.  SO expect to find a good range of sparkling in addition to Champagne. If you are curious about the beautiful Jura region in France there are the most wines I have ever seen listed here from this interesting region. A very good wine by the glass range with different sizes too from this recently established restaurant. Exciting.

Clove Lane

19 Clovelly Rd, Randwick, NSW
(02) 9326 3573

CUISINE Modern Bistro
WINE LIST Emile Avramides / Andrew Smith
WINEs ON LIST 68 (15 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($20-$11 by the glass) 

Only recently opened, Clove Lane has managed to pull together a very smart and well-chosen little wine list. Quality abounds and if you are not after the full bottle, there are several very good quality, yet affordable wines to choose from, either as wine by the glass or carafe.

Cut Bar And Grill

16 Argyle St, The Rocks, NSW
(02) 9259 5695

CUISINE Steak House
WINE LIST Gustavo Kroneis
WINEs ON LIST 476 (41 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($65-$9 by the glass)

A superb wine list which offers terrific diversity and interest as well as some lovely aged wines should the mood take you. There is a very strong Australian line up and the real focus of the list is the red wines, perfect for the steak cuisine.  So whether Nebbiolo, Tempranillo, Cabernet Sauvignon, Shiraz or Malbec, to name just a few, there are terrific options on offer including some of the global stars. A strong range of other beverages is also available to complete the experience.

Dear Sainte Éloise

5 / 29 Orwell St, Potts Point, NSW
(02) 9326 9745

WINE LIST Matthew Swieboda / Nathanial Hatwell / Jasmin Natterer
WINEs ON LIST 470 (25 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($21-$12 by the glass)

We've come to expect the unexpected from Matt Swieboda and his team. This is a tour de force: clearly focused on the new wave of wines that test the boundaries. There is tremendous diversity from all the corners of the known world. Challenging yet with enough choice to satisfy all. An amazing collection.

Deck Sydney

1 Olympic Dr, Milsons Point, NSW
(02) 9033 7670

CUISINE Modern Australian with a Mediterranean influence
WINE LIST Mark Dibblin
WINEs ON LIST 158 (29 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($24-$8.5 by the glass)

There's a freshness about the Deck's wine list, an impeccable balance of established producers and cutting-edge winemakers pushing the boundaries; quality locals alongside those from further afield. There's an abundance of new varietals, field blends, careful choices from overseas as well as a balance of price points catering for all occasions. Something interesting for all.

deVine Food And Wine

32 Market St, Sydney, NSW
(02) 9262 6906

WINE LIST Julian Izzillo
WINEs ON LIST 500 (35 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($89-$11 by the glass)

This is a substantial tome whose heart may be in the cutting edge of winemaking although few will fail to find some vinous treasures to enjoy. Heaps by the glass and carafe, made more extensive by Coravin. A huge range of varietals, many aged rieslings from Australia and Europe, great wines from the far flung corners of the globe. That first world problem - choices.

Dining Room

7 Hickson Rd, The Rocks, NSW
(02) 9256 1661

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST Walter Henao
WINEs ON LIST 203 (15 by the glass)
WINE PRICES$$$ ($15-$25 by the glass)

Guests at the hotel and this restaurant can enjoy iconic views of the Harbour while enjoying classy food and a luxurious selection of world class wines. It's the superstar producers and the classic wines that feature - Hill of Grace, Grange stand out as do Grosset Riesling, Tyrrells 'Vat 1', Yabby Lake and Ata Ranghi Pinot. Well-known internationals round out a comfortable list.


412 Crown St, Surry Hills, NSW
(02) 9331 4800

CUISINE Italo-Australian
WINE LIST James Hird
WINEs ON LIST 237 (237 by the glass)
WINE PRICES$$$ ($90-$10 by the glass)

While it almost seems too good to be true, the Dolphin does offer all its wine by the glass at fair prices. It's a sizeable list that boldly charts the territory of cutting-edge winemaking. The classics tend to be Didier Dagueneau, Peasant's Tears, Spinifex, Jamsheed and Lucy Margaux though there are more established names such as JJ Prum, Bass Phillip, Rippon and Bindi for those seeking assurance. A dazzling modern list.


79 Elliott St, Balmain, NSW
(02) 9810 5466

WINE LIST Enis Guner / Fatih Kulle
WINEs ON LIST 71 (20 by the glass)
WINE PRICES$ ($16-$10 by the glass)

Effendy is a delight and deserves to be celebrated by wine lovers from far and wide. There's plenty of choice for those who don't want to try Turkish wines: but that would be a missed opportunity. Celebrate the modern wines of this ancient country with the generous selection of Turkish wines available by the glass. Try the feast!


252 George St, Sydney, NSW
(02) 9240 3000

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LISTDavid Wood / Franck Moreau
WINEs ON LIST 1,040 (45 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($190-$15 by the glass)

Consistently among the finest lists in Australia: diverse by the glass, with Coravin extending the range of mature wines. Exemplary list of spirits; wonderful range of teas; champagne listing by (more than 20) villages; comprehensive offering of less well-known varieties and less prominent wine producing countries. And of course, the great wines of Australia and all major regions of the world.

Et Al

Llankelly Pl, Potts Point, NSW
(02) 8018 6722

WINE LIST Stephen Craig
WINEs ON LIST 50 (15 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $ ($15-$10by the glass)

No doubt this newly established neighbourhood bistro is proving a haven for authors with 'et al' emblazoned on the cover of one or more of their books. The list might be small but it covers a great deal of territory offering less-well-known examples of European wines alongside similarly carefully chosen local delights. A huge range of varieties is a feature. Modest prices (by the glass, carafe and bottle) too.


2 Ash St, Sydney, NSW
(02) 9240 3000

CUISINE French Brasserie
WINE LIST Julien Legat / Jean-Charles Mahe
wines ON LIST 900 (36 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($99-$12 by the glass)

One of Sydney's best bistro is an important outlet for Merivale and focuses attention on the very good and great wines of France. Few of us with get past the captivating list by the glass with ranges throughout the French countryside (even to the Auvergne) and even embraced an important visitor or two. The great wines are there - Clos d' Ambonnay, Raveneau, Georges Vernay, Rayas and heaps more. Any etrangers listed will have earned their place.


5/6 Bells Blvd, Salt Village, South Kingscliff, NSW
(02) 6674 4833

CUISINE Fine Dining Seafood
WINE LIST Folorent Elineau / Matthieu Sadaillan
Wines ON LIST 100 (19 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($21-$11 by the glass)

Fins has tightened its selection, restricted the list to 100, yet lost none of its verve or impeccable sense of class. Careful choice is the key, with the list so well-tuned to its seafood theme. There's a nod to the cutting edge without losing touch with the great wines of the world. Room, too, for a playful romp with the Douro Boys before returning to classics like Yarra Yering, Rockford, Neudorf and Felton Road. A delight.


23-33 Mary St, Surry Hills, NSW
(02) 8204 0800

CUISINE Modern Australian where everything is cooked on fire with different kind of Charcoals
WINE LIST Miki Bisceglia
Wines ON LIST 118 (28 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($45-$13 by the glass)

This is a bold youthful list which balances cutting edge producers and more established winemakers from Australia and abroad. There will be plenty to challenge and delight customers who are prepared to be bold and  more than adequate choices for those who are happy to remain within their comfort zone.

Fish Shop

22 Challis Ave, Potts Point, NSW
(02) 9240 3000

WINE LIST Tate Dawson/Paul Huet
WINEs ON LIST 77 (15 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $ ($16-$10 by the glass)

A thoughtfully executed small list that balanced familar names with surprises, overseas and Australian choices and tailors the offerings to the predominantly seafood menu. Reds tend towards the medium-bodied and fruity spectrum with just a few bottles for those who can't resist. The choice of quality whites is impeccable.

Flooded Gums

North Bonville Rd, Bonville, NSW
(02) 6653 4544

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST Niels Sluiman
WINEs ON LIST 250 (20 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $ ($13-$7 by the glass)

This substantial list offers something to delight all members of the Bonville Golf Club. Prices are modest; while the range of Australian wines at all price points balances excellent quaffers, top class current releases and world class wines with age. There's plenty to attract in the international selection.

Flying Fish

19-21 Pirrama Rd, Pyrmont, NSW
(02) 9518 6677

WINE LISTPaolo Saccone
WINEs ON LIST 392 (46 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($23-$14 by the glass)

This substantial international list compliments an impressive seafood menu and offers diversity of choice especially of established superstars from the world of wine. Suprises abound at all price points while those looking for classics will not be disappointed.


380 Oxford St, Paddington, NSW
(02) 9240 3000

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LISTCaitlyn Rees/Franck Moreau
WINEs ON LIST 242 (27 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($95-$12 by the glass)

This clearly focused Merivale restaurant offers a diverse range of the most interesting new wave of minimal intervention wines from around the globe. It's balanced by more well-known favourites that lie close to the edge. A thoughtfully-designed list which is helpful to the consumer. The sommeliers will always be part of the conversation. Superb collection of spirits with innovative twists to many favourite cocktails.


Shop 2, 100 Barangaroo Ave, Barangaroo, NSW
(02) 9052 9188

CUISINE Japanese
WINE LIST Chris Entwistle
WINEs ON LIST 315 (20 by the glass)

This is an impressive debut, a list grounded in time and place and perfectly atuned to the food which the restaurant serves. Thoughtful even clever choices identify talented newcomers, wineries when the quality is surging, always beautifully balanced. It's an international list with a bountiful supply of new names and enough established superstars to allay any concerns. Strong on sparkling wines, riesling, pinot: actually pretty much anything. Some decent flights, too.


488 George St, Sydney, NSW
(02) 9265 6068

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST Mauro Bortolato/Chris Rose
WINEs ON LIST 1,000 (36 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($145-$10 by the glass)

Maintaining its position among the country's best, this is a thoughtfully curated list that is comprehensive and diverse. The Other Reds listing, for example, includes wines from Austria & Germany, Croatia, the Lebanon & Morocco, Greece, Portugal, Argentina, China & more. By the glass, Coravin wines are offered in three pour sizes. The great wines of Australia and the world are here, often with mini verticals to tantalise.

Golden Century

393-399 Sussex St, Sydney, NSW
(02) 9212 3901

CUISINE Asian, Chinese
WINEs ON LIST735 (29 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($28-$25 by the glass)

This is the ultimate heavy hitters wine list, with clarets stretching back to the 1925 Lafite. There's multiple vintages of Grange and the Penfolds premiums, Hill of Grace, Jayer, Petrus; a wonderful collection of champagnes, clarets and excellent Burgundy. There is something for everyone - much to delight at modest price, a great deal just a match for the Chinese cuisine.

GPO Cheese & Wine Room

Lower Ground Floor, 1 Martin Pl, Sydney, NSW
(02) 9229 7701

CUISINE Specialty
WINE LIST Maxime Pellegrino
WINEs ON LIST 210 (4 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $ ($19-$13.5 by the glass)

Although the focus of this international list is on Australia and Europe it does stretch into the far reaches of the globe offering incredible diversity of varieties and a huge range of lesser-know yet quality producers. There are enough established winemakers to avoid ruffling the comfort of customers and a cheese program to offer much delight. There are the fondues and the Cheese Flights to offer unique wine matching opportunities.

Hotel Centennial

88 Oxford St, Woollahra, NSW
(02) 9362 3838

CUISINE Brasserie
WINE LIST Melissa Moore/Paul Huet
WINEs ON LIST161 (28 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($95-$11 by the glass)

The Centennial boasts an impressive list, extensive by the glass with a good range of prices. While retaining a solid Australian collection, the list also has a strong European focus. It covers all price points and established and emerging producers of quality wines. Your greatest problem will be making the choices.


15 Bligh St, Sydney, NSW

WINE LIST Andy Tyson
WINEs ON LIST650 (20 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($24-$12 by the glass)

An unashamedly French-focused list that celebrates cutting-edge wines from around the globe alongside established favourites. There's a Natural Wine Selection, a splash of the Jura and the Loire, lots of chenin, gamay and pinot, more aligoté than you'd expect, as well as a dazzling array of spirits. Vibrant and thoughtful.


Shop 1, East Esplanade, Manly Wharf, Manly, NSW
(02) 8116 8555

CUISINE Italian Australian
WINE LIST Federico Dordoni
WINEs ON LIST87 (28 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($22-$11 by the glass)

This is a compact international list with a generous selection of wines by the glass. Established Australasian superstars are well featured at a range of prices. The selection throughout is carefully chosen with quality and value admirably balanced.

Husk & Vine

Shop 7, Macquarie St, Parramatta, NSW

(02) 7803 2323

CUISINE Mediterranean
WINE LIST Jack Harris
WINEs ON LIST99 (25 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $ ($25-$10.5 by the glass)

Plenty of wines by the glass, some under Coravin at 75 and 150ml pours, makes this an accessible international list. Europe dominates those from overseas with some honourable exceptions. The blend of established and emerging producers throughout gives interest to the selection.


1 Notts Ave, Bondi Beach, NSW
(02) 9365 9000

WINE LIST James Hird
WINEs ON LIST 357(24by the glass)

This is substantial list pays tribute to the vignerons of Italy and Australia with a comprehensive collection of their classic wines, superstar producers and emerging talents. There are some indispensible flavourites from other countries too. It begins with a small bracket of Italian bubbly which shows how thoroughly the sommeliers know their trade. The list is diverse, even diverting for a page of the Dolphin's cutting edge wines. There's something for everyone and much to love.

Il Lago

Unit G01/8 Century Cct, Baulkham Hills, NSW
(02) 9634 2487

WINE LIST Gianbattista Plebani
WINEs ON LIST 179 (14 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($29-$7 by the glass)

This modest list which focuses on Australasia and Italy shows the benefit of careful selection. It focuses on the established superstars - Grosset, Leeuwin, Cloudy Bay, Felton Road, Wendouree, Petaluma, Jim Barry - with the occasional nod to those premium labels which have emerged in the past decade or two - By Farr, Tolpuddle, John Duval.  Likewise, the selection of Italian wines  tends towards the well-established - Antinori, Pio Cesare, Tignanello, Sassicaia, Gaja - although there are surprises with the Passito Di Pantelleria and the Nonino Picolit Riserva Grappe. A conservative list but all the better for it.


350 George St, Sydney, NSW
(02) 9223 0158

CUISINE Modern Indian, Sri Lankan
WINE LIST Lindsay Carr
WINEs ON LIST 44 (24 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $ ($20-$12 by the glass)

Everything about the menu and wine list entices you to visit this cutting edge Indian restaurant. The compact list offers such a diverse range of varieties and wine styles that few would be disappointed by the choice available. And having most of the 44 wines available by the glass improves the possibilities. It's an international collection featuring Australasia and Europe wines. Most may be unfamiliar but it's an exciting list of quality producers.


Ground Floor, 1 Martin Pl, Sydney, NSW
(02) 9229 7788

WINE LIST Matthieu Mouraire
WINEs ON LIST 235 (14 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $ ($20-$13 by the glass)

The Intermezzo list is like the place itself, comfortable and familiar. The focus is on the varietal wines of Italy and the range has wonderful breadth so it's a good place to explore Italian regions, especially those which are less well-known. There's plenty of wines from around Australia, too. Modest pricing is a feature.

Jade Temple

11 Bridge St, Sydney, NSW
(02) 9252 1888

WINE LIST Gary Armstrong
WINEs ON LIST 410 (36 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($120-$8 by the glass)

An exemplary international list: superb by the glass with a reserve list under Coravin by the half glass, glass and carafe. The list offers a good range of varietals at modest prices which balances established and cutting edge producers and includes a small section on skin contact whites for the adventurous. There is a substantial Reserve list - priced appropriately - of luxury champagnes and heaps of JJ Prum, Nicolas Joly, Dagueneau, Rene Rostaing, Clape and much more.


69 Bynya Rd, Whale Beach, NSW
(02) 9974 5599

CUISINE Modern Australian with Italian influences
WINE LIST Niels Sluiman
WINEs ON LIST 1,680 (85 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($96-$12 by the glass)

The drive for excellence continues! If we thought that Jonah's didn't have anything more to prove, no one told them. It's hard to believe yet the judges consider that the list may have improved since last year's win. Awards for Best Listing of Australian Wines and NSW Wines are not easily won. Extraordinary by the glass, even better with Coravin. No matter what your tastes are, you'll be delighted by Jonah's.

Kid Kyoto

17 -19 Bridge St, Sydney, NSW
(02) 9241 1991

CUISINE Japanese
WINE LIST Lindsay Carr
WINEs ON LIST 39(21 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $ ($17-$12 by the glass)

There's a great deal to like about Kid Kyoto: an awesome range of sake and Japanese whisky, interesting teas and a lively small list with the majority of the wines available by the glass. It's an international collection mostly from emerging producers. There's a good range of varietals and some established winemakers such as Mount Pleasant, Luke Lambert, Collector, Gladstone and Jamsheed to provide balance.

Kiplings Garage Bar

2 Eastern Rd, Turramurra, NSW
(02) 9440 4088

CUISINE Internationally inspired Street Food Menu + Modern Australian Lunch Menu
WINE LIST Thiago Menezes / Helen Thompson
WINEs ON LIST283 (82 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $ ($31-$9 by the glass)

Kiplings have been working hard to improve the size and quality of list. It's largely a collection of well-established and classic Aussies fleshed out with some interesting wines from around the world. There's a good range by the glass and prices throughout are modest: lots to like here.

La Rosa

Shop 133, Level 2, The Strand Arcade, 193 Pitt St, Sydney, NSW
(02) 9223 1674

WINE LIST Cristian Casarin
WINEs ON LIST 59 (18 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $ ($29.5-$10.1 by the glass)

This is an interesting compact list which is predominantly Italian and pays attention to Italian wines that are less well-known in Australia. They currently introduce the list by paying tribute to wines from Lazio with three available by the glass. Offering 18 of the list by the glass certainly makes it much easier for customers to get to know these less familiar varieties and blends.

La Tratt

14 Anzac Ave, Fairfield, NSW
(02) 9727 5000

WINE LIST Anthony Sobb
WINEs ON LIST 151 (41 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($27-$9 by the glass)

A richly deserved increase in the glass rating for La Tratt thanks largely to the introduction of Coravin and the boost to the number of wines available by the glass. The list is transformed. It remains an international list strong on Australia's finest wines, delicious Kiwi drops, sublime Italian varietals, and more. Modest pricing, too.

Leura Garage

84 Railway Pde, Leura, NSW
(02) 4784 3391

CUISINE Mediterranean
WINE LIST Eli Murphy
WINEs ON LIST 80 (18 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $ ($13-$9 by the glass)

Leura Garage provides an expansive showcase for the wines of its local region. The strengths and diversity of the area are revealed both by the glass and by the bottle. It is fleshed out by an international brigade which provides some useful counterparts and points of comparison to the local wines. A Reserve list adds gravitas to the selection although, arguably, this could provide a similar function if part of the main list.

The Lodge Bar 

3/415 Darling St, Balmain, NSW
(02) 8084 2502

WINE LIST Thomas Hoff
WINEs ON LIST 202 (13 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($16-$10 by the glass)

This substantial list travels into most of the corners of the globe offering established superstars and emerging winemakers who are worth following. Wines are organised by weight and style: such as 'light, dry and citrus whites' 'aromatic whites'. They range from modestly priced quaffers to fairly priced classics. A list for wine lovers.

Lotus At The Galleries

Level 1, 500 George St, Sydney
(02) 9267 3699

WINE LISTAnnette Lacey
WINEs ON LIST 78 (25 by the glass)

An impeccably balanced international collection so that there's a clear representation of Australia's strengths as well as presenting emerging talents from around the world and some of the great wines. Modest prices are here but, if you want to lash out, that's possible.

Lotus Barangaroo

Shop 8-9, Wiligul Walk, Barangaroo, NSW
(02) 8318 3688

WINE LIST Karen Dollimore
WINEs ON LIST 166 (19 by the glass)

This is an impressive international list which covers Australasia and Europe in breadth and depth, exploring both established and emerging producers. It balances the familiar with the less familiar admirably, and with the confidence to encourage customers to go beyond their comfort zone. Thoughtfully constructed.

Lotus Dumpling Bar

3/16 Hickson Rd, Dawes Point, NSW
(02) 9251 8328

WINE LISTAnnette Lacey
WINEs ON LIST 31 (17 by the glass)

A tiny international list with more than half of the wines available by the glass. Care has been taken to tailor the wines to the cuisine and the style of the restaurant and to balance the familar with less well-known wines. Check out how carefully the reds have been chosen. Prices are modest.

Love, Tilly Devine

91 Crown Ln, Darlinghurst, NSW
(02) 9326 9297

WINE LIST Matthew Swieboda / Nathanial Hatwell
WINEs ON LIST 265 (14 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($23-$11 by the glass)

Hall of Fame as Best Wine Bar and still one of the best places to drink in the country, a quieter vibe than before but classy with helpful staff. The list is the darling of the natural wine movement, forthright, opinionated and adored for that. It's a celebration of those who dare to make wine differently with plenty of reference points from overseas.

Madame Shanghai

18 College St, Darlinghurst, NSW
(02) 8318 8618

CUISINE Japanese
WINE LIST Annette Lacey
WINEs ON LIST 186 (17 by the glass)

Surprises abound in this international list which dares to be different. There are wines from Santorini, Slovenia, the Macon, Monterey, Baden, the Lebanon and China; classics from Barbaresco, Priorat, the Loire, the Mosel and from all parts of Australasia. The unifying theme would appear to be that they suit the Chinese cuisine of the restaurant, are of good quality, and offer something different.


6 Cowper Wharf Rd, Woolloomooloo, NSW
(02) 9332 3822

CUISINE Seafood & Grill
WINE LIST Samuele Sampirisi
WINEs ON LIST 444 (34 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($68-$14 by the glass)

This is a very impressive list: sizeable, comprehensive, diverse and above all thoughtfully constructed. A very good list by the glass - balanced, containing several classic wines and some at the cutting edge - becomes a great list with the use of Coravin by presenting classics with age. It is a list that encompasses the globe but with its prime focus on Australasia and France  and at its peak with the most important varietals. Balance between modest prices and expensive, too.


129/85 Reynolds St, Balmain, NSW
(02) 9810 9125

WINE LIST Giancarlo Bazzocchi / Marco Orso
WINEs ON LIST 300 (12 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($49-$9 by the glass)

Clear focus can set hearts a flutter. A restaurant which offers four risottos is focused - and different. Similarly, one that has 8 bubblies from Franciacorta knows about Italian wine. And the Italian wines by the glass, 250ml and 500ml serves: what a tour de force (if you'll pardon the use of a French expression). There's greco and falanghina from Campania, and an aglianico, too; a Brunello from Tuscany, a Barbaresco.  It's an extensive, fairly priced list of Italian varietals, with a few essentials from elsewhere including Australia. The Col d'Orcia Brunello di Montalcino vertical (back to 1977) is awesome. Looking for an Italian treat: here it is.


30 McLachan Ave, Rushcutters Bay, NSW
(02) 9361 6641

CUISINE Roman-Italian
WINE LIST Flavio Carnevale
WINEs ON LIST 140 (21 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($23-$11 by the glass)

One look at this list and it is near impossible to imagine you are not sitting at a café in Rome, soaking up all things Italian. There is no safety net here – if Italian wine is not your thing, go elsewhere. For the rest of us, an extensive list with classics and emerging stars. And a lot cheaper than a flight to Rome.

Mejico Pitt Street

105 Pitt St, Sydney, NSW
(02) 9230 0119

CUISINE Modern Mexican
WINE LIST Lindsay Carr
WINEs ON LIST 19 (19 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $ ($17-$11 by the glass)

This tiny list is mostly available by the glass and runs the gamut from Rioja, through Rias Baixas, Cahors and Gladstone stopping off for a glass of Mumm in Reims and offering some less-well-known Aussie wines. There's sangria, margaritas and heaps of tequila all in tune with the Mexican flavours.


4 Ash St, Sydney, NSW
(02) 9221 6444

CUISINE Moorish / Mediterrenean
WINE LIST Nathanial Hatwell / Jayden Earea / Daniela Vaca
WINEs ON LIST 210 (19 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $ ($22-$12 by the glass)

This list focuses on the wines of the Iberian Peninsula and small producers using minimal intervention and few additives in making their wines. It has a wider international perspective taking in Australia, France and much more. There are sections on wines that are Orange/Macerated/Oxidative or Funky. Lots to intrigue the curious.


267 Cleveland St, Redfern, NSW
(02) 8646 4930

CUISINE Meat focused with Scandinavian influence
WINE LIST James Sanders
WINEs ON LIST 88 (13 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($30-$15 by the glass)

This is a Scandanavian themed restaurant with the wine list dovetailing neatly into the folklore of the Gods. Starts with some impressive champagnes and interesting wines by the glass (Wooing Tree, Rolf Binder, Church Road) and outstanding winemakers represented (Bill Downie, Michael Downer, Gary Mills, David Lowe) though many, especially from Europe are less well-known. Pricing is on the high side.


6 Cowper Rd, Woolloomooloo, NSW
(02) 9332 3822

WINE LIST Keiron Morrison
WINEs ON LIST 99 (4 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $ ($27-$12 by the glass)

This pleasant Italian restaurant in Sydney's Woolloomooloo has small list that fits its cuisine admirably. There's a good range of Italian wines from established producers (Frescobaldi, Pio Cesare, Pieropan) as well as emerging winemakers; prosecco, lambrusco and bubbly from Franciacorta; and a good range of appropriate Aussies. Modest pricing for the most part with a few delights for those who wish to splurge.

Momofuku Seiōbo

80 Pyrmont St, Sydney, NSW
(02) 9657 9169

CUISINE Caribbean/Australian
WINE LISTMaximilian Gurtler
WINEs ON LIST 250 (10 by the glass)

One of the most innovative and daring wine lists in Australia, Momofuku Seiobo has amassed a unique collection of wines collated in rarely-seen ways. It's a list that is curated around small collections of lesser-known but outstanding, artisan wine producers, leaning decidedly to natural wine, often listing what would be considered 'b-side' or obscurer releases. That being said, the wines contained within these pages are of the utmost quality, often released with some cellar time, and utilised judiciously and appropriately to match the beautiful and quixotic flavours of the food menu. The scattering of alt-Australian producers amongst small wine regions of France, a legion of oxidative Jura wines, a large selection of orange (amber) wines sounds relatively commonplace, but those contained here, on such a high profile stage, is a compelling innovation. So much great drinking here, so appropriate to the contemporary mores of dining here.


71A Macleay St, Potts Point, NSW
(02) 9360 4410

CUISINE Contemporary
WINE LISTNick Hildebrandt
WINEs ON LIST 800 (40 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($50-$8 by the glass)

If you want a taste of sake or a premium wine such as a Bass Phillip Estate pinot noir or Tissot savagnin, Monopole offers a 60ml pour on its ever-changing selection. It's a great way to try something different or expensive without breaking the weekly budget on a bottle. Even the excellent by the glass option can be extended to carafe size, equivalent to a half bottle. It's all about drinking well and diversely. Although that is the mantra for the list anyway, one that largely focusses on France with enough choice wines from Australia, America and Europe.


14 Anzac Ave, Fairfield, NSW
(02) 97275 000

WINE LISTAnthony Sobb
WINEs ON LIST 26 (24 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $ ($16-$9 by the glass)

Except two champagnes, all wines are offered by the glass on this small, all French list and all very fairly priced. Given the cuisine is also Gallic, that makes a neat match.


65B Macpherson St, Bronte, NSW
(02) 8937 0886

WINEs ON LIST 97 (10 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $ ($18-$13 by the glass)

A seafood restaurant needs a list that's full of aromatic wines comprising refreshing whites and zesty lighter-bodied reds. They are here at Moxhe. It's a thoughtful collection and while a few more options by the glass would appeal, there's certainly good value on every page with excellent rieslings and European whites in particular.

Mr. Wong

3 Bridge St, Sydney, NSW
(02) 9240 3000

CUISINE Modern Cantonese
WINE LIST Alexis Rojat / David Wood
WINEs ON LIST 1095 (27 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($40-$13 by the glass)

Wow. What a coup to have every Penfolds Grange ever made and ready to drink. Yes including the very first, the famed experimental 1951 that was never officially released. It'll set you back $135,000, almost three-times the cost at auction. While it's unlikely the cork will be pulled, this is a wonderful display of Australian wine history. That aside, this is a stunning list with more affordable wine. While there are a few trophy bottles, the selection mostly focusses on aromatic wines that work so well with the modern Cantonese food. A breathtaking champagne selection, an extensive range of riesling, Burgundy both red and white with choice options for local pinot noir and chardonnay. Without question, something for everyone here.

Ms. G's

155 Victoria St, Sydney, NSW
(02) 9240 3000

CUISINE Modern Asian
WINE LIST Paul Huet / Franck Moreau
WINEs ON LIST 57 (14 by the glass)
WINE PRICES$ ($15-$9 by the glass)

It is possible to have diversity with a small list and this gem with a mere 57 bottles stretches across regions far and wide taking in Australia, Italy, France, Germany, Portugal and even Lebanon. There's a playfulness too with headings Hot In Here featuring off-dry wines to handle spicy food although some seem a bit obtuse. Still, what's on offer is pitched well to the mod-Asian menu and all totally smashable.


N2/1 Honeysuckle Dr, Newcastle, NSW
(02) 4929 4122

CUISINE Modern Japanese
WINE LIST Yohei Namba
WINEs ON LIST 131 (21 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($26-$9 by the glass)

Nagisa's list exudes personality and plenty of choice from its by the glass focussing almost exclusively on New South Wales wines to a neat sake list. In between there's a large selection of aromatic whites and reds that work so well with the Japanese food. Without being parochial, there's a cool selection of Hunter Valley semillon.

Newcastle Club

40 Newcomen St, Newcastle, NSW
(02) 4929 1224

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST Matt Underwood
WINEs ON LIST565 (17 by the glass)
WINE PRICES$$ ($18-$10 by the glass)

It might be in Newcastle with a history dating back to the 19th century but this club is far from parochial. Yes there's a stunning line-up of Hunter Valley semillon because sommelier  Matt Underwood has a love of the variety. But he also says drinkability is key so the 565 wines on offer represent just that with a strong range from Australia and Europe. It's a cracking list.

Nola Steakhouse and Bar

T1.13, Level 1, One International Towers Sydney, 100 Barangaroo Ave, Sydney, NSW
(02) 9188 3039

CUISINE New Orleans Inspired Smokehouse
WINE LIST Jarrod Mills
WINEs ON LIST 256 (21 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($20-$13 by the glass)

NOLA's wine list is as smokin' as the barbecue meats served up at this smokehouse and bar.  There's a strong Australian focus off-set by well-matched French, Italian and Spanish wines particularly reds such as shiraz, tempranillo, nebbiolo, pinot noir and cabernet sauvignon. There's an excellent and diverse bunch of white wines, too.

Nomad Sydney

16 Foster St, Surry Hills, NSW
(02) 9280 3395

CUISINE Contemporary Middle Eastern
WINE LIST Simon Howland
WINEs ON LIST 99 (97 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($47-$11 by the glass)

If you want nebbiolo or sangiovese, they are here. Maybe gruner veltliner or bianco d'Alessano, yep those as well.  Nomad's list traverses the varietal mix of several countries and yet, all the wines on offer, about 99, are home-grown. And bar two sparkling wines, every single one is available by the glass or carafe. Wow. Just wow.

North Bondi Fish

120 Ramsgate Ave, North Bondi, NSW
(02) 9130 2155

WINE LIST Matt Dunne
WINEs ON LIST 60 (26 by the glass)
WINE PRICES$$ ($24-$10 by the glass)

Views overlooking Bondi Beach, glass of rose in hand. Life's good. This small, uncomplicated compilation hovers around 60 bottles and works to highlight the breezy location and seafood-based menu. That means aromatic wines, mostly whites, plenty of sparkling and champagne, and something for everyone.

Nu Bambu

20-26 Canterbury Rd, Hurlstone Park, NSW
(02) 9559 0000

WINE LISTJackson Sobb
WINEs ON LIST 25 (11 by the glass)

When Canterbury-Hurlstone Park RSL decided to revamp its restaurant last year, it didn't hold back and has created a winning formula called Nu Bambu. Theres a stylish dining area with an open kitchen and the menu is a tribute to the flavours of Thailand, Vietnam, China and Indonesia with former Longrain chef Freddie Salim in charge. His fragrant dishes require aromatic, easy-drinking and complementary wines, which is the focus of the list. Comprising just 25 bottles expect good riesling and textural pinot gris, which are perfect with pad Thai or pinot noir with pork belly or a big bowl of pho. While a few more offerings by the glass would round-out the list, all wines are well under $100 and that makes a very affordable night out.

One Ford Street

1 Ford St, Balmain, NSW
(02) 9818 4232

WINE LIST Fabio Dore
WINEs ON LIST 300 (25 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($45-$10 by the glass)

While there's no shortage of good Australian bottles alongside a smattering of key varieties from Germany, Spain and France at One Ford Street, this wow-list is a fabulous celebration of Italy. Without leaving the dining table, it's possible to vinously traverse from Valle d'Aosta in the north right down south to Sicily. Every Italian wine region is dazzling with suggestinos and not just the usual suspects either as in Barolo or Chianti Classico but rarer gems such as gaglioppo, cesanese or timorasso. Bravo.

One Penny Red

2 Moonbie St, Summer Hill, NSW
(02) 9797 8118

CUISINE Comtemporary
WINE LIST David Murphy
WINEs ON LIST 235 (21 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($27-$10 by the glass)

One penny red states its case at the beginning of its diverse list that it seeks out producers who make wine with integrity and a respect for the land, which is fair enough, and with that come diverse approaches. It means there's plenty of hipster juice from oxidative to skin-contact or amber wine think Radikon and Ruggabellus and a raft from the Jura to classic offerings such as JJPrum, Serrat and Kasuda. What's clever about this excellent list, there's something for everyone and guaranteed delicious drinking.

Opera Bar

Lower Concourse, Sydney Opera House, Sydney, NSW
(02) 9247 1666

CUISINE Contemporary
WINE LIST Matt Dunne
WINEs ON LIST 50 (38 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($24-$10 by the glass)

You can drink well before a night at the opera thanks to this small, well-composed list of about 50 wines. It's possible to splurge on a bottle of champagne but with most wines offered by the glass, there's good drinking, maybe Hirsch gruner veltliner under the light and crisp heading or Jamsheed cabernet franc under savoury and refined.

Oremeggio At The Spit

d'Albora Marinas, Spit Rd, Mosman, NSW
(02) 9969 4088

WINE LIST Alessio Domenici
WINEs ON LIST 412 (56 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($42-$19 by the glass)

Towards the back of this impressive list is a terrific selection from Australia and New Zealand, in between Spain takes a stance, but really, this is all about a love affair with Italy. It balances the big names such as Gaja and Antinori with high-end producers such as Costanti and Marco De Bartoli and much more besides. Thrilling features come in the form of a regional focus such as Vatellina and 56 wines by the glass.

Oscillate Wildly

275 Australia St, Newtown, NSW
(02) 9517 4700

WINE LIST William Godsall-Smith
WINEs ON LIST 305 (9 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($25-$13 by the glass)

It's possible to oscillate wildly with this list because the choices are just so good. One minute there's a classic that beckons maybe a Wynn's John Riddoch or something different Peter Wetzer kekfrankos perhaps or a skin-contact pinot grigio such as Scorpo Bestia. While it takes a bit of time getting used to the layout, led by varieties and including examples from across the world of wine. do concentrate because there will be something just right. Of course, there's always a sommelier to help.


8/6 Cowper Wharf Rd, Woolloomooloo, NSW
(02) 9368 7488

CUISINE Modern Italian
WINE LIST Nathan Lawler
WINEs ON LIST 360 (25 by the glass)
WINE PRICES$$$ ($43-$13 by the glass)

It's always a joy to peruse this savvy, not too-big, not too-small list and while there's a focus on Italy and Australia, it's how those wines are presented that makes this so good. Otto takes pride in showcasing Italian varieties crafted by local producers, which is why Pandora's Amphora or Luke Lambert nebbiolo can be found alongside the best from Italy. And there's a diverse and excellent by the glass selection.

Owl House

97 Crown St, Darlinghurst, NSW
(02)9357 5060

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST Amir Halpert
WINEs ON LIST 50 (1 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $ ($24-$9 by the glass)

This small international list balances established producers such as Isole e Olena, Ata Rangi, Penfolds, and Scarborough with emerging winemakers who are not yet household names. Sixteen offerings by the glass enable many of these to be tried. Tasting flights for spirits have many enthusiasts.


384 Oxford St, Paddington, NSW
(02) 9240 3000

CUISINE Neighbourhood Pub
WINE LIST Paul Huet/Franck Moreau
WINEs ON LIST 110 (15 by the glass)
WINE PRICES$$ ($18-$10 by the glass)

Merrivale's take on the neighbourhood pub in Oxford Street is just the place to have a comfortable meal with some wines that mirror your mood. Looking for something of excellent quality that you are familiar with, then it's there. Similarly, if you want something innovative, even challenging in this international lists, they'll find it. Diverse and comprehensive by the glass and bottle with impressive champagnes (or beers) to start and fascinating spirits to finish.

Paddo Inn

338 Oxford St, Paddington, NSW
(02) 9380 5913

CUISINEModern Australian
WINE LIST Matt Dunne
WINEs ON LIST 44 (23 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($40-$9 by the glass)

The Paddo is all about offering seriously good pub meals, not too complicated and it has wines to match. A glass of Grosset riesling thanks with grilled fish or Argentine malbec and a scotch steak or its famous burger and mencia will do very nicely. Here is proof positive that a small list can appear diverse and engaging because it is, and now, just spotted a Massolino moscato for dessert.

Paper Daisy

21 Cypress Cres, Cabarita Beach, NSW
(02) 6676 1444

CUISINEAustralian Contemporary
WINE LIST Hiroyuki Okubo / Olivia Evans
WINEs ON LIST 200 (35 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($80-$10 by the glass)

A thoughtfully composed, deftly executed list. It balances well-known with emerging talents both at home and abroad, includes sections on natural and minimum intervention wines alongside established superstars from By Farr, Giant Steps, Ten Minutes by Tractor; a great range of alternative varieties from Europe. There is something for everyone. Exemplary by the glass.


Shop 100, Level 2, Strand Arcade, 412-414 George St, Sydney, NSW
(02) 9231 6117

WINE LIST Cristian Casarin
WINEs ON LIST201 (34 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($411-$10.3 by the glass)

An immaculately curated list that is a celebration of Italy  and Italian grape varieties at home and in other parts of the world. Coravin has been used to amazing effect - offering rare bottles at 75, 150 and 350 ml. Their rationale is explained on the list as they source lesser known examples of important Italian varieties, giving patrons a unique experience. Balance is provided by more well-known Australian wines. The offering of wines with age is exemplary.

Pilu At Freshwater

Moore Rd, Freshwater, NSW
(02) 9938 3331

CUISINE Sardinian
WINE LIST Wainer Pordetti
WINEs ON LIST 380 (30 by the glass)
WINE PRICES$$$ ($65-$16 by the glass)

Former winner admirably maintaining its standard with the focus clearly on celebrating Italian wines - with its cameo of Sardinia the chef's birthplace. There is a good Australian collection to complement the amazing range of varietals from Italy. The wine list continues to contribute to making this a great place to dine.

Popla Bellingen

2 Oak St, Bellingen, NSW
(02) 6655 9000

CUISINE Australian
WINE LIST Amanda Cleal / Louise Dowling
WINEs ON LIST 31 (10 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $ ($15-$10 by the glass)

Just 33 specially chosen Australian wines grace the page at this new artisanal outpost on the mid-north coast. The wines are equally boutique offering flavour or texture and all down-right delicious. Thankfully a third are selected by the glass so it's possible to graze here with a KT riesling, move onto an orange wine followed by a Tasmanian pinot noir and finish with a chilled Simao & Co branca.


Lower Ground Floor, 1 Martin Pl, Sydney, NSW
(02) 9229 7744

WINE LISTFelipe Gonzalez
WINEs ON LIST 100 (4 by the glass)
WINE PRICES$ ($14-$7.5 by the glass)

This lively tapas bar and Spanish restaurant in the CBD offers a good range of international wines with a clear focus on Spain. Its modest pricing makes it an attractive venue for the lunchtime crowds. All the old favourites are there: albarino, godello and verdejo as well as the reds from Rioja, Ribera del Duero and Priorat.


Lower Ground Floor, 1 Martin Pl, Sydney, NSW
(02) 9229 7777

WINE LIST Franck Goze
WINEs ON LIST 400 (29 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($40-$12.5 by the glass)

The substantial list in this classy Grill Room in the CBD lays its emphasis on its reds without ignoring the need to offer an enticing collection of bubblies and whites. The list by the glass covers an extensive range of prices and is made more comprehensive by its Coravin selection at 60 and 150 ml of quality French wines with bottle age and some top Aussie drops. This is an international list with an emphasis on France. And the steaks!

Public Dining Room

2A The Esplanade, Mosman, NSW
(02) 9968 4880

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST Luke Collard
WINEs ON LIST 390 (20 by the glass)
WINE PRICES$$$ ($19-$14 by the glass)

A gorgeous location on Balmoral Beach, a stylish dining room and a menu highlighting seafood needs a wine list to match. It's why there's no shortage of white varieties from Hunter Valley semillon, German riesling to Italian vermentino. Red and white burgundy make their mark with quite a few bigger reds in the mix but overall, this is a sharply composed list. Makes you thirsty just reading it.


Upper Level, Overseas Passenger Terminal, The Rocks, NSW
(02) 9251 5600

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST Amanda Yallop
WINEs ON LIST 520 (30 by the glass)
WINE PRICES$$$ ($365-$10 by the glass)

Quay's exquisite wine list matches the food of chef, Peter Gilmore, and the memorable views of the Harbour. Amanda Yallop and her team contine to rate among Australia's finest practitioners and the list among the country's best. Consider the range of prices in the list by the glass, the stunning array of champagnes, the freshness that the cutting edge producers add to what is offered. Always a key part of a memorable evening at this restaurant.

Queen Chow

Level 1, 167 Enmore Rd, Enmore, NSW
(02) 9240 3000

CUISINE Modern Cantonese
 Franck Moreau/Adrian Filiuta
WINEs ON LIST 131 (17 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $ ($20-$8 by the glass)

This is a cleverly constructed smallish list that ticks all the boxes. While it's very much of the minute - with gamay and chenin featured and lots of minimal intervention wines - there are plenty of established players - Bloodwood, Cape Mentelle, Giant Steps - to offer balance. It is an international list featuring for the most part emerging talents and wines that suit the cuisine.

Queens Club

137 Elizabeth St, Sydney, NSW
(02) 9264 1171

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST Dion Stergiopoulos/ Vivian Esho/ Jeanette Dickson/Paul Reid
WINEs ON LIST 279 (22 by the glass)

This sizeable list offers a breadth of choice with his international selection. All of the major wine styles are represented with a balance of emerging producers and established winemakers. The list hits its high point with a vertical of Clonakilla Shiraz Viognier, some Clape Syrah, aged Wendouree and Bin 707.


594 New South Head Rd, Rose Bay, NSW
(02) 9327 6561

CUISINE Modern Seafood
WINE LIST Luke Marosszeky/ Nicolas Cleradin
WINEs ON LIST 110 (27 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($42-$8 by the glass)

Who says that size matters?  At 110 wines in total, plus a swathe of spirits, aperitifs and digestifs, this list proves that less, really is more.  One could start with a flight of gin, served chilled and neat, or a manzanilla sherry, or a glass of champagne: all are equally suitable to taking in the sweeping 270 degree views of Rose Bay.  The list is balanced and exciting, pitching grower champagne alongside prestige cuvee, muscadet next to soave, and a great selection of premium Australian wines.  The likes of SC Pannell, Bass Phillip, Journey Wines, Yalumba and Ashton Hills all feature.  There are a number of carefully curated Premier and Grand Cru Burgundy wines, and a selection of Chateauneuf-du-Pape and back vintage Bordeaux.  It is an art to create a list that is concise and expansive at the same time - there is something for everyone here. Put this on the list.

Reserve Wine Bar

102 Hunter St, Newcastle, NSW
(02) 4929 3393

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST Pat Hester
WINEs ON LIST 250 (39 by the glass)
WINE PRICES$$ ($42-$10 by the glass)

It's hard to read through the wine list at Reserve Wine Bar without a smile on your face... the passion here is palpable.  Apart from having an engaging and surprising selection of wines from all around the world, the list is peppered with varietal notes and descriptors, making it an enjoyable read.  At Reserve, they offer wines via Coravin, greatly extending the range of available by the glass options.  This opens us up to a world of older vintage, and hard-to-find premium wines. Hunter Valley Semillon, Arena Noir from Armenia, Penfolds St Henri from 1993 and Bin 389 from 2004.  Its an exceptional proposition which makes it hard to want to go on to the wine list, but push on we must.  The main body of the list contains some eye-brow-raising stuff, including a magnificent collection of Lakes Folly Chardonnay and Cabernet - 11 vintages of which are available in magnum!  We haven't even got to the spirits yet... and theres a lot to see there too. Bravo guys - exciting stuff.

Restaurant Botanica

555 Hermitage Rd, Pokolbin, NSW
(02) 6574 7229

CUISINE Contemporary
WINE LIST Darcie Stuart
WINEs ON LIST 200 (17 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($17-$12 by the glass)

You've got to love a wine list like this: it's concise; it has a great regional focus (where else can you get so many different wines and vintages from New South Wales in one spot, in particular the Hunter Valley?); they make their own wine, "from our paddock out the front" and they even go to the trouble of listing nearby wineries, should you be thinking about planning a day or two of exploring the surrounding Hunter Valley wine region.  It is an absolute joy to read.    Where the wines are not from NSW (and most are), the list pays homage to other regions that lead in the style: think Martinborough and Adelaide Hills for Sauvignon Blanc, Chablis, Champagne, Sonoma Coast pinot, Central Otago pinot and others.  Finally, the food menu offers three levels of degustations, with the option of matched wines.  With a generous selection of beers, spirits, aperitifs and cocktails to boot, Restaurant Botanica rocks a passionate, informed and impressive list.

The Rice Den

30-32 Chandos St, St Leonards, NSW
(02) 9438 3612

CUISINE Modern Cantonese
WINEs ON LIST 94 (14 by the glass)
WINE PRICES$-$$ ($12-$10 by the glass)

The Rice Den brings all the hustle, bustle and aroma of Cantonese street food to the streets of St Leonards, in Sydney.  The Rice Den offers up a wine list rich variety: from cocktails, beers and spirits, right the way through the premier cru Burgundy.  The restaurant has a feature winery (currently Tyrrell's from the Hunter Valley) which highlights the wines and offers some tidy back vintages, that are no longer available on the market.  The wines are chosen with the food in mind: think Hunter Valley Semillon for the richness in silken tofu, and flavours like Szechuan, tataki, sambal and house-made chilli oil all beg for bright, aromatic wines, that can be found on the list.  Atmospheric, exciting and something for everyone.

Ripples At Chowder Bay

Building 7, Deck C, Chowder Bay Rd, Mosman, NSW
(02) 9960 3000

CUISINE European
WINE LIST Nicola Drakopoulos
WINEs ON LIST 99 (20 by the glass)
WINE PRICES$$ ($19-$10 by the glass)

Ripples at Chowder Bay in Mosman sets "modern Australian dining in an historic setting" overlooking Obelisk Bay and out towards Lady Bay Beach.  It is clear that the wines on this concise list are chosen with the menu in mind, favouring fresh, mediterranean styled wines to complement food offering.  There is an interesting trail of Greek, Italian and Lebanese wines throughout the list, with the rest of the wine selection ranging as far and wide as Western Australia, the USA and Europe.  There is also a satisfyingly detailed selection of spirits, cocktails, aperitifs, digestifs and beers.  Sunsets over the bay never looked so good.

Rockpool Bar & Grill Sydney

66 Hunter St, Sydney, NSW
(02) 8078 1900

CUISINE Steakhouse
WINE LIST Yuki Hirose
WINEs ON LIST 2732 (56 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($80-$12 by the glass)

Rockpool's tome features close to 3300 bottles and starts with a dazzling array of wines by the glass hovering around 60. Thanks to Coravin, gems appear perhaps something from Didier Dagueneau or Domaine Tempier and not just current renditions either but older vintages, a 1995 Peter Lehmann Stonewell for example. On the whole, France rules with a focus on many wines from single producers, big hitting names, too, the likes of Dom Perignon, Domaine Leflaive, E. Guigal although the vertical theme continues throughout the list into Australia, Germany, Italy and beyond. Mind-boggling what's on offer.

Rosetta Sydney

118 Harrington St, The Rocks, NSW
(02) 8099 7089

WINE LIST Seamus Brandt
WINEs ON LIST 530 (42 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($49-$11 by the glass)

From the comfort of a velvet chair, it's easy to traverse Italy via its wine regions thanks to this wonderful list.  The greats are here think Giacomo Conterno and Aldo Conterno, Biondi-Santi, Quintarelli, Marco de Bartoli plus a host of usual suspects with some intrigue offered via Australian made Italian varietals. While it could branch out further to incorporate lesser known producers or regions, Alto Piemonte for one, there's no denying the quality choices here. An excellent and diverse by the glass selection includes several marsala styles and enough local options such as Margaret River cabernet sauvignon for those hankering for such wines.

Royal Sydney Yacht Squadron

33 Peel St, Kirribilli, NSW
(02) 9955 7171

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST Jamie Dickinson / Kim Smith
WINEs ON LIST 1133 (33 by the glass)
WINE PRICES$-$$$ ($20-$9 by the glass)

The wine list at the Royal Sydney Yacht Squadron remains a force to be reckoned with again, in 2018.  Not only is the list gargantuan in size, offering a selection of 1133 wines, but it has also been discerningly curated - no mean feat.  The list of beers, spirits and cocktails is, as one would expect, extensive, however it is lilliputian in comparison to the cellar selection.  The offer of wine by the glass is hard to pass up - the selection is explained by well- written notes, and all but the sparkling also available by the carafe.  Wading into the list and it very quickly becomes clear that great care has been taken in the selection of the wines.  Grower champagne, interesting and hard to find back vintages, sparkling from around the world, the very best of Australian and international riesling... it is dangerous to start listing varietals - this list covers most bases.  With prices ranging from the low $30's, right the way up, RSYS is at the top of its game, again.  Bravo.

Sails On Lavender Bay

2 Henry Lawson Ave, McMahons Point, NSW 
(02) 9955 5998

CUISINE Contemporary French
WINEs ON LIST 192 (20 by the glass)
WINE PRICES$-$$ ($26-$14 by the glass)

Sails on Lavender Bay shows us what a balanced and accessible wine list looks like.  Whilst there are some super luxe options available - think Grand Cru Burgundy, prestige cuvee Champagne and cult Australian - the list remains, a very well priced and carefully selected list.  The wines are interesting, varied, regionally precise (i.e. the wines reflect regions most suited to particular varieties) and it is great to see some emerging wineries alongside internationally renowned houses.  Let us not forget to mention the extensive selection of spirits, including some wonderful older Calvados and Frank Giraud Cognac.  Plenty to love here.

Sake The Rocks

12 Argyle St, The Rocks, NSW
(02) 9259 5656

CUISINE Contemporary Japanese
WINE LIST Gustavo Kroneis
WINE ON LIST 231 (25 by the glass)
WINE PRICES$$$ ($20-$9 by the glass)

While the focus here is on sake - and that's done remarkably well - there is so much more to this list: such as Japanese beers, champagnes and a small yet thoughtful selection by the glass. It's an international collection giving greatest emphasis to those wines which suit its food - bubbly, whites, lighter-framed reds. Some lists may be for admiring. This is a list for drinking.

Season Drink Dine

Bells Boulevard, Kingscliff, NSW
(02) 6674 7766

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST Dirk de Beer
WINEs ON LIST 189 (20 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($26-$8.5 by the glass)

The list at Season Drink Dine is balanced and high quality, with plenty of great producers dotted throughout the list.  Superstar producers such as Leeuwin, Oakridge, William Fevre, Giant Steps, Dalrymple, Felton Road, Penfolds, Bollinger, Henschke, Pierro, Vasse Felix and Dom Perignon all rub shoulders, making it very difficult indeed to settle on any one wine alone.  There is Coravin available by the glass, which further allows for more choice, this time in the premium space.  The wines are followed up by an extensive spirits collection, perfect nightcap material.


201 Sussex St, Sydney, NSW
(02) 9283 1990

CUISINE Contemporary
WINE LIST Rodney Setter
WINEs ON LIST 800 (33 by the glass)
WINE PRICES$$$ ($72-$21 by the glass)

Rodney Setter has played his part for many years in what remains one of Sydney's great dining experiences. The list is breath-taking, almost overwhelming: so many options that entice. Aperitifs and digestifs are a specialty. The list by the glass is enhanced dramatically by Coravin so the choice requires some thought on the part of the diner. It's strong in the classic wines of the world yet offers excellent choices from less well-known wine destinations. One of the country's finest lists.


83 Percival Rd, Stanmore, NSW
(02) 9572 6666

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LISTBridget Raffal / Dan Sharp
WINEs ON LIST 225 (16 by the glass)
WINE PRICES$$$ ($50-$16 by the glass)

From the outset, Sixpenny's list is explained as having an emphasis on styles that complement its food with a focus on light, fresh wines of texture and flavour. It achieves the brief brilliantly. While playing it safe with the varietal makeup, the selections from mostly small producers are thoughtful, diverse and delicious. Australia and France take centre stage with the occasional appearance from regional heartlands think Austria for gruner veltliner or Piedmont's reds. Splashes of personality come through in mini-verticals and its neat list of correctly named Amber wines aka skin contact whites. Bravo.


35 Barangaroo Ave, Barangaroo, NSW
(02) 8587 5400

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST Matt Dunne
WINEs ON LIST 66 (20 by the glass)
WINE PRICES$$$ ($30-$14 by the glass)

Barangaroo House is the hottest talked about gastronomic temple featuring three-levels of dining including the rooftop bar, Smoke - with its harbour and city views. It's fitting the drinks list is all about cocktails, spirits and champagne, off-set by just 12 wines, all offered by the glass. Grower champagnes such as Egly-Ouriet and Selosse and top end names such as Krug, Taittinger and Salon feature and flights of 3 are offered.


80 Pyrmont St, Pyrmont, NSW
(02) 9657 9161

CUISINE Modern Japanese
WINE LIST Joey Frances
WINEs ON LIST 600 (46 by the glass)
WINE PRICES$-$$$ ($295-$13 by the glass)

Sokyo, at The Star boasts an astounding wine list.  It may be more accurate to call it a 'beverage collection', as it spans across a wide range of styles.  Most importantly, being at a Japanese restaurant, there is an expansive collection of Sake, including the prized Dassai Junmai Daijinjo 'Beyond'.  The Japanese Whisky lineup is similarly impressive: an entire page dedicated to it offering the Yamazaki 25YO, Hakushu 25YO and Nikka Taketsuru 25YO.  The winelist has the same impact, with 46 different wines available by the glass (including Grange and a 1989 Vouvray).  The main list spans many of the great estates from the great wine regions around the world, and there is similar gravitas afforded to the Australian wineries who consistently produce outstanding wines (think Tyrrells, Penfolds, Torbreck, Cape Mentelle, Wynns, etc).  Here's hoping your birth year is 1982: Margaux, Lafite, Haut-Brion, Cos d'Estournel, Petrus and Cheval Blanc all feature.   The eyebrows are raised.

Sotto Sopra

316 Barrenjoey Rd, Newport, NSW
(02) 9997 7009

WINE LIST Gianmarco Giovi
WINEs ON LIST 81 (37 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($37.5-$9.5 by the glass)

Sotto Sopra brings us the best of Italy in this compact and exciting list.  Italian wines are surfing a wave of popularity right now, largely in part to their 'hand-in-glove' suitability to food, and also due to our heavily Italian influenced diet here in Australia.  So it is a pure joy to see an Italian restaurant giving us an Italian wine list that spans across a vast array of styles, grape varieties, flavours and experiences.  For those already initiated into the world of wine, Sotto Sopra offer us magnificent producers such as Ca' del Bosco, Pieropan, Isole e Olena, Elvio Cogno and Planeta.  For those just starting out, this list has just about everything you need to fall in love with Italian wine.  If wine isn't your thing and you are searching for other drinks from Italia, the selection of beers, digestifs, aperitifs, cocktails, liqueurs and more should have all your bases covered.  Wonderful stuff Sotto Sopra.

Spice Temple Sydney

10 Bligh St, Sydney, NSW
(02) 8078 1888

WINE LISTRichard Healy
WINEs ON LIST 100 (26 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($28-$17 by the glass)

Spice Temple is Neil Perry's playground - the food menu has emblazoned across the top "these unique and truly special dishes are driven by my long fostered passion for Asian Cuisine" - the selection is truly tempting.  The wine list is written by Richard Healy: a greatly respected sommelier with a great palate and with prodigious wine knowledge.  So we knew we were in for a treat.  It opens with the statement "100 wines explained in 100 words" and describes how every wine fights to be listed there, and when a new one comes onboard, another must be taken off.  Delving into the list, you know a) you are in the hands of a master, and b) every single wine there will be worth its salt. Contained within is a mix of wines from hard-to-find cult producers, wonderful champagnes, benchmark Australian and international wineries and a host of exciting wines that remind us what a well curated and crafted wine list looks like.  All selected with Neil Perry's food in mind. Exciting stuff.

Stunned Mullet

24 William St, Port Macquarie, NSW
(02) ) 6484 7757

CUISINE International
WINEs ON LIST 390 (67 by the glass)
WINE PRICES$$$ ($49-$11 by the glass)

Where do we start?  Stunned Mullet in Port Macquarie has us like... stunned mullets.  A truly magnificent list, full to bursting with astoundingly great producers from home and abroad (think Gaja, Vieux Telegraph, Have, DRC, Dujac, Etienne Sauzet, Rockford, Wendouree, Moss Wood, Armand Rousseau and Guigal, to name a few).  The list has 67 wines available by the glass, which is great for those times when you just can't commit to a bottle.  Stunned Mullet also employ the use of a Coravin, meaning the wines by the glass are varied, interesting, and in some cases aged, ready to go.  Almost every wine on the list has a brief sentence or two to put it into context, and there are several producer-focussed lists which help to paint a picture through the years of their wines and evolving styles.  The list of beers, spirits and cocktails is extensive, and includes a great gin selection, including a breakdown of different types of tonic... we love this level of detail!

Sushi E

252 George St, Sydney, NSW
(02) 9240 3000

CUISINE Japanese
WINE LIST David Wood / Franck Moreau
WINEs ON LIST 210 (17 by the glass)
WINE PRICES$$$ ($28-$14 by the glass)

Sushi e brings us a new form of delight in their exciting wine list.  210 wines on a wine list can feel like a lifetime of reading, unless it's put together as thoughtfully and as expertly as this is.  It starts with 17 wines available by the glass, that give us a hint of the interest and variation that lies further on.  We turn the page and are graced by some of Champagne's greatest houses - it's a roll call of greatness: Jacquesson, Pierre Peters, Delamotte, Bollinger, Ulysse Colin, Pol Roger, Krug, Egly-Ouriet and others.  There is a Dom Perignon vertical, including two Oenotheques (now labelled as P2) a P2, and a 1975.  The tone has been set.  Grosset riesling alongside Joh Joh Prum, Cape Mentelle and Tyrrell's, Cullen and Comtes Lafon.  It goes on to include Keller (cult german label), Curly Flat, aged Bordeaux, and culminating in Chateau Rayas 2001 Chateauneuf du Pape.  To remind you where you are.... theres a full list of Sake ranging from the affordable to the sublime.  Kampai

Sydney Cove Oyster Bar

No. 1, East Circular Quay, Sydney, NSW
(02) 9247 2937

WINE LIST Barney Fallows
WINEs ON LIST 163 (24 by the glass)
WINE PRICES$$ ($19-$10 by the glass)

Now in its 30th year, Sydney Cove Oyster Bar continues to lead the way, presenting a wine list perfectly in tune with seafood. Not only do sparkling and white wines step up to play a significant role, but it's the attention to little things that sets this list apart. Rose and chilled reds, so plummy and light in tannins, not to mention pinot noir and cool climate shiraz and syrah all play essential roles. The list is primarily Australian in style with a number of alt-styles, orange and biodynamic makers. The odd European break out is all class such as the trio of aged whites from the Jura.


529 Kent St, Sydney, NSW
(02) 9267 2900

CUISINE French & Japanese
WINE LIST Fabio Danzi
WINEs ON LIST 928 (27 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$-$$$ ($80-$18 by the glass)

Tetsuyas gives us one of the great wine lists in the country.  Everything about this list is astounding.  It has an impressive range, in that it dances lightly over small and exciting/edgy producers, but it also scales the considerable heights of great Champagne, Burgundy and Bordeaux.  It is well curated for chef Tetsuya Wakuda's famous Japanese cuisine - it is balanced, exciting and clever.  Tetsuyas drill lightly down at a winery level, often offering verticals of a particular wine or estate which gives us the opportunity to choose from a range of vintages.  There is a great selection of sherries, cider and sake by the glass or carafe.  The selection of wines by the glass is a clear snapshot of the variation and excitement of what lays further on in the main list.  If you can't decide what to drink (and you would be forgiven), Tetsuyas offer a matched wine flight and food menu, to allow you to sit back and take it all in.  Glorious.  Unmissable.

This Must Be The Place

239 Oxford St, Darlinghurst, NSW
(02) 9331 8063

CUISINE Bar Snacks
WINE LIST Kylie Javier Ashton
WINEs ON LIST 20 (10 by the glass)

This Must Be The Place embodies everything that is central to the natural wine movement: it's got story, setting, theatre... the list is very small, twenty wines in total, ten of which you can buy a glass of.  The selection is modern, edgy and representative of a new generation of winemaker and wine drinker.  Pet-nat, skin contact, off the wall blends, this wine writer would learn something from the selection here.  LTBTP specialises in cocktails, and when you read the options available, it's easy to see why.  "...Watermelon riesling and rosewater", or "Fino, Tanq 10, Prosecco, Lemon, Basil", you had us at Fino.  There are flavour combinations here that you might not think go together - but they work.  Such is the clarity of vision and ingenuity of owner Luke Ashton.  Even the lo-fi bar snacks are exciting.    This Must Be The Place is a must visit for anyone who loves a bar that is a home away from home - there's something very luxurious about leaving the choice up to someone else...


Level 4, ivy, 320 George St, Sydney, NSW
(02) 9240 3000

WINE LIST Time Perlstone
WINEs ON LIST 1000 (25 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $-$$$ ($70-$14 by the glass)

This staggering tome of a winelist feels like it brings every wine style home from Italy, to your table.  While it includes 'new world' wines in measured proportions, this list remains at heart Italian, and it is a joy to see.  Ordinarily something of this magnitude might be intimidating to navigate, however this is laid out by varietal, allowing one to find familiarity and comfort in the styles we know and love.  It has Barolo (broken down into communes), Prosecco, Soave and wines from grapes grown on the side of the volcano in Sicily, Mt Etna.  It lists the superstar producers (think Gaja, Ornellaia, Aldo Conterno, Antinori) alongside small family-run producers, and it even has room for a full Grange vertical back to 1951.  All of this is bookended by an impressive selection of aperitifs, digestifs and spirits that will make nonna's 6 course family lunch look like a walk in the park.  Unmissable for the lover of all things Italian.

Union Bank Orange

Sale & Byng St, Orange, NSW
(02) 6361 4441

CUISINE European
WINE LIST Nicholas Bacon
WINEs ON LIST 273 (31 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $ ($45-$8 by the glass)

The idea of travelling to a new region outside of a city can sometimes conjure up thoughts of "where do I start?".  Institutions like Union Bank make for an easy answer.  With quite possibly the largest collection of wines from Orange in the world, newcomers can treat this place like a visitors centre.  Championing varieties such as Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Shiraz, there are also many international (and broader national) nods towards great examples of many styles.  The list is well put together, intelligently curated, and impressive.   For all of us lovers of food and wine, the food in the restaurant is regionally sourced - another reference to the quality of produce grown in the region.  The herbs and flowers are grown on the restaurant grounds and the fruit, vegetables and goats have their own postcodes.  Union Bank in Orange is an impressive collection of local fare, and a must-visit when in town.

Upstairs At The Lord

19 Kent St, The Rocks, NSW
(02) 9251 4044

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST Blair Hayden / Kristian Savio
WINEs ON LIST 346 (36 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $-$$$ ($38-$8 by the glass)

Every now and again, you step into a restaurant or bar that is more like a tardis than a venue, full to bursting with everything you could think to want.  Upstairs at the Lord is one of those places.  An historic pub and brewery, with a wine list so good it hums.  They have a vertical of Rockford Black Shiraz, back vintage and rare selections of wines in almost every varietal, 1986 Chenin Blanc from Vouvray, a hefty selection of super premium Barossa Shiraz including Grange, Hill of Grace, Rockford Basket Press and more.  There's a great selection of the A.P. Birks Wendouree wines (hard to find and thrilling in old age), and the selection of spirits digestifs, sherrys, ports, fortifieds and Cognacs is something to behold.  If you're looking for a drink other than wine, the choice of ales brewed on site might give you something to consider, and there is also a little lineup of Sake and premium cider.  The menu is simple but precise and a cut above the usual pub fare.

Vernons Bar

2 Moonbie St, Summer Hill, NSW
(02) 9797 8118

CUISINE Wine Bar / Contemporary
WINE LIST David Murphy
WINEs ON LIST 63 (16 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $-$$ ($27-$10 by the glass)

Vernon's Bar is proof that mini can be mighty.  A concise list of only 63 wines, but it is such an exciting selection.  The list is so well curated that they manage to include almost one of everything here, but at no point does it feel anything other than finely crafted.  They have wines from Mt Etna in Sicily, Jura, Champagne and the Mosel in Germany.  It is a who's-who of edgy Australian producers such as La Violetta, Sorrenberg, Rieslingfreak, Mac Forbes and more.  There are amber wines (one by the glass or carafe) and the red selection is expansive and exciting.  The list of cocktails are clearly well put together and feature new Australian superstars like Poor Toms and Four Pillars, the beers available are craft and sought-after, and there are five pages of premium spirits and digestifs on offer.  To top it all off, the wine bar food menu is simple but satisfying - you will find any number of perfect accompaniments for the vast array of beverages on offer.  A real gem.

Wine Library

18 Oxford St, Woollahra, NSW
(02) 9360 5686

CUISINE European Tapas
WINE LIST John Giuffre
WINEs ON LIST391 (22 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $-$$$ ($17-$21 by the glass)

Perhaps The Wine Library in Woollhara has the highest hipster to library ratio in the country.  This list is seriously good - for all the wine nerds out there who haven't yet: do.  There's a great selection of wines by the glass... or you could read through your options and go for the Mystery Blind - you could get anything, for $14 - whichever way the bottle spins, you'll be right.  The main list is a categorised collection of well-selected wines, spanning grower Champagne, Loire Valley superstars, orange wines and a collection of four years (2004-2007) of the Guigal 'La La's'. There is back vintage and hard-to-find Australian and international wines including Chateau Cheval Blanc, Torbreck, Domaine Leroy, Tissot 'Vin Jaune', Benjamin Leroux... we could go on for days.  Or you could just go there.   Nightcaps are sorted with two pages of spirits, including Sydney's own Archie Rose and Poor Toms.  And France's Delord Cognacs, of course.  Libraries never looked so good.

The Winery Surry Hills

285A Crown St, Surry Hills, NSW
(02) 8322 2007

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LISTEleanor Webb
WINEs ON LIST 248 (22 by the glass)
WINE PRICES$-$$ ($17-$12 by the glass)

The Winery in Surry Hills does something curious on the winelist.  It lists the names of the individual winemakers of all of the wines available by the glass.  The effect this has, is to slow you down, and consider that all the wines have had care and thought put into them, and it becomes harder to go straight to your preferred style.  Very clever. The rest of the list follows on in this way: there is a selection called "Why haven't I heard of this?" (a good question and one frequently asked), which shows a handful of interesting wines accompanied by well-written explanations about the wines, the regions and the wine styles, written by the sommelier Eleanor Webb.  The wines contained within the body of the list span most continents, varieties and styles, and equate to a very balanced, well curated list.  There is a hefty selection of spirits, beers, cocktails, sake and cider available, so whatever your poison, you're likely to find it here.

Workshop Kitchen

248 Armidale Rd, Tamworth, NSW
(02) 6766 7000

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LISTDaine Cooper
WINEs ON LIST 191 (55 by the glass)
WINE PRICES$$ ($57-$8 by the glass)

The Workshop Kitchen in Tamworth is yet another example of a great regional restaurant/bar to highlight local producers, and to bring premium wines and fine dining to the country.  The dining room is wall-to-wall mahogany panelling, backlit premium wine fridges, and tan leather bunkettes.  The place oozes style and class.  Fancy Dom Perignon, or Dom. Faively Latricieres-Chambertin Grand Cru?   It's here.  There is also a magnificent selection of wines served by the glass via Coravin.  We are talking Tamworth people - the country music homeland. Extra points for the local producers spotlight and selection of regional wines.  The variety of spirits on offer make the cocktails look terribly appealing. There is sparkling water from the Snowy Mountains, Single Malts from the local Dobsons Distillery, heres even a decent selection of Sake, and have you ever had Sweet Pea gin?  That's also here. Down in the Rare Australian Icons section... well - the title says it all.   Keep it up.


4/50 Holt St, Surry Hills, NSW
(02) 8399 1440

CUISINE Continental
WINE LIST Gavin Wright
WINEs ON LIST 150 (150 by the glass)
WINE PRICES$-$$ ($16-$11 by the glass)

Where does one start with a bar as unique as Wyno.  From the Porteno crew, comes this dark, intimate and 'no holds barred' wine bar, where everything that is available to buy by the bottle, is also available to buy by the glass.  That's 150 different options.  The list doesn't tell you how much the glass prices are, only the bottle prices, so we can only assume the bottle price is divisible by 5.  The selection is fascinating - expertly curated, this list takes us on a journey across the globe, and throws open the doors to a wide world of wine.  There is a distinct 'natural' vibe, but with something for the traditionalists also (ok, the cool traditionalists).  There are three pages of options that don't include a single glass of wine... sherry, sake, aperitifs, vermouth (bianco and rosso), distillates (think Grappa, Cognac and the like), and only four beers.  This place has serious sass and clarity of vision.  Wyno lures you to step outside the box of conventionalism.

Yang & Co

79 Edinburgh Rd, Castlecrag, NSW
(02) 9967 5913

CUISINE Modern Asian
WINE LIST Ben Mitchell/Lex Wong
WINEs ON LIST 113 (15 by the glass)
WINE PRICES$-$$ ($15-$11 by the glass)

Yang and Co is brought to you by Chef Lex - famous for his much loved 'Yang's Malaysian Food Truck'.  This quirky list has a definite focus on texture and acidity, crucial for matching to the umami-rich food.   The wines are organised into palate-weight, which can often be a chaotic way of going about things, but in this case assists in matching the wines to the food, so we're all for it. There is a tasting note for every wine, to further help you in your quest for the perfect accompaniment.  There is a good selection of natural wines (and everything that the term encompasses), international wines, and even some appearances from Japan's Grace Winery. For all the gin lovers, there's an epic selection here - exclusively from Australia!  With the exception of one Japanese gin.  Think Archie Rose, Poor Tom's, Giniversity, McHenry, Four Pillars, Institute Polaire, Stone Pine, Hartshorn, Distillery Botanica and Ironbark (the house pour).  Alright Yang and Co - we see you.  Great work!


57 Macleay St, Potts Point, NSW
(02) 9332 2344

CUISINE Vegetarian
WINE LIST Nick Hildebrandt
WINEs ON LIST 400 (30 by the glass)
WINE PRICES$-$$$ ($26-$8 by the glass)

There are some voices in wine that deserve to be heard.  Nick Hildebrandt is one of them.  If he isn't on your radar, listen up: Nick is highly awarded, and has an enviable reputation in wine circles for his prodigious knowledge and masterful ability to craft a wine list.  The list at Yellow is a carefully curated, eclectic and exciting collection of wines from around the globe. It plays in sync with the concise but edgy vegetarian menu, complementing the diverse flavours and textures of the food.  You could start with a glass of sake, dry sherry or champagne, and move on to the wines by the glass, each recommended by a three word tasting note.  The list expands into hard-to-find grower champagnes, cult wine producers like Keller, Serrat, Raveneau, Bell Hill, Wendouree and more.  It's exciting yet accessible.  Apart from serving, hands down, the best whipped, salted and house-cultured butter in town (with fresh sourdough), Yellow is home to an outstanding wine list, not to be missed.