Queensland Winner

Blackbird

Blackbird

123 Eagle St, Brisbane, Qld 
(07) 3229 1200


blackbirdbrisbane.com.au

CUISINE Heritage Australian
Wine list Penny Grant
Wines on list 500 (32 by the glass)
Wine prices $$$

Overseen by one of the state’s leading sommeliers, Penny Grant, Blackbird has become extremely popular with wine lovers at every level, which is no surprise with such an impressive list.

There is an extensive array of aperitifs as well as a well-priced collection by the glass – classic offerings from names such as Pannell and Cullen, along with some more far-flung and intriguing producers like Hubert Lamy, Stargazer and Littori. There is also a selection of the rarest gems from Queensland’s Granite Belt, plus sake, sherry and a fine offering of top Champagnes.

The appealing mix of classic producers and emerging stars continues throughout the list. Italy is exceptionally well-served as is rich Aussie shiraz. The pricing is most attractive and I had to go back to check that the prices were not for half bottles. They were not.

The list concludes with an outstanding collection of spirits – gins, malt whiskies, Japanese whiskies, bourbons, rums and tequila, many rarely seen. One suspects that there may be a few office workers late from lunch and possibly not at their best. Ken Gargett

Finalists

Bacchus South Bank

Rydges South Bank, cnr Glenelg & Grey Sts, South Brisbane, Qld
(07) 3364 0837

bacchussouthbank.com.au

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST Andrew Giblin
WINEs ON LIST 600 (44 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($55-$11 by the glass)

A prestigious, fine-dining restaurant with a wine list to match.  Sommelier Andrew Gribin is to be commended for compiling an impressive set of world-class wine.  The list covers all bases, from local Queensland labels to an excellent selection of Burgundy.  It is a beautifully presented list, with great clarity and order, which guides the diner through different varietals and regions, including classic and lesser-known wineries.  It's evident that each wine has a place, and I'm sure that Gribin has a story to tell on every bottle.

Hellenika

2235 Gold Coast Hwy, Nobby Beach, Qld
(07) 5572 8009

hellenika.com.au

CUISINE Theo Kampolis / Michael Pyrgos / Megan Cox
WINE LISTSteven Adams / Mark Ganga
WINEs ON LIST 470 (30 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($70-$10 by the glass)

Congratulations to the team at Hellenika for continually raising the bar with its wine offering.  The venue has recently re-opened after a transformative renovation, with the wine list more than tripling in size, now with almost 500 labels on offer.  The strong core of Greek wines still stands, with helpful explanatory tasting notes, and there are many to try by-the-glass.  The international section has been dramatically expanded to include premier wines from around the globe.  Australia more than holds its own within this global mix, with a host of top producers on offer.  It's an exciting list, all shiny and new, and more than befitting of this sophisticated Greek establishment.

Glass-Rated

8th Ave Terrace

31/1176 Gold Coast Hwy, Palm Beach, Qld
(07) 5534 6912

8thaveterrace.com.au

CUISINE Modern Bistro
WINE LIST Krista Hall
WINEs ON LIST 79 (24 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($49-$10 by the glass)

Plenty of thought has gone into this list, with a selection of considered wines at extremely fair prices.  The range of labels is contemporary, including wines from S.C. Pannell and Small Fry.  Great variety in the wines-by-the-glass, including a premium set, served via Coravin.  By the bottle, you will find a wide range of types and origins, with the majority of the bottles well-under $100/bottle.  There is also a number of fancy wines if you feel like splashing out.

Aria Brisbane

1 Eagle St, Brisbane, Qld
(07) 3233 2555


ariarestaurant.com/brisbane

CUISINE Modern Classic
WINE LISTIan Trinkle
WINEs ON LIST 1040 (39 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($266-$14 by the glass)

A beautifully constructed, refined wine-list showing the deep understanding that sommelier Ian Trinkle has of the wine industry.  It's a distinguished list, showcasing top wines from Australia, as well as the world beyond.  Its clarity and seamless nature make perusal of its pages a dream, and despite listing over 1000 wines, it is inviting, rather than overwhelming.  There are multiple vintages of classic labels, the inclusion of many local Granite Belt wines, a host of reds from the Jura and southern France, and an extensive collection of alternate varietals.   The listings from Burgundy and the Rhone Valley are impressive.

Bacchus South Bank

Rydges South Bank, cnr Glenelg & Grey Sts, South Brisbane, Qld
(07) 3364 0837

bacchussouthbank.com.au

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST Andrew Giblin
WINEs ON LIST 600 (44 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($55-$11 by the glass)

A prestigious, fine-dining restaurant with a wine list to match.  Sommelier Andrew Gribin is to be commended for compiling an impressive set of world-class wine.  The list covers all bases, from local Queensland labels to an excellent selection of Burgundy.  It is a beautifully presented list, with great clarity and order, which guides the diner through different varietals and regions, including classic and lesser-known wineries.  It's evident that each wine has a place, and I'm sure that Gribin has a story to tell on every bottle.

Balthazar Surfers

Ground Floor, 2807 Gold Coast Hwy, Surfers Paradise, Qld
(07) 5592 9973


crowneplazasurfersparadise.com.au

CUISINE French & Modern Australian
WINE LIST David Stevens-Castro
wines ON LIST 500 (28 by the glass)
WINE PRICES$$$ ($35-$10 by the glass)

Sommelier David Stevens-Castro's talent and passion for wine are evident through the astute listings. There is great diversity in the wines-by-the-glass with top wines at accessible prices.  Premium wines, such as Keller Riesling and Dry River Gewürztraminer, are served via Coravin.  There's an extensive listing of vintage and non-vintage Champagne, as well as local and international bubblies.  And under each varietal category is a broad range of styles and origins.  Its a list for true wine lovers, presenting wines of interest at all price points.

Billykart West End

2 Edmondstone Street, South Brisbane, Qld
(07) 3177 9477

billykart.com.au

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST Ben Roberts
WINEs ON LIST 41 (20 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($16-$11 by the glass)

A tight list, but one where every single selection represents something different. A deliberate avoidance, other than some very fine Pol Roger champagnes, of the tried and trusted has led to an innovative and exciting collection. Very much Aussie focused. A list which might be casual, but it will appeal.

Blackbird

123 Eagle St, Brisbane, Qld
(07) 3229 1200


blackbirdbrisbane.com.au

CUISINE Heritage Australian
WINE LIST Penny Grant
WINEs ON LIST 500 (32 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($60-$9 by the glass)

The list at Blackbird has a swagger and an energy that is captivating.  You simply want to try it all, whether it be one the Australian 'Gintonics', old-fashioned cocktails or one of the many whiskies. The headline act for the wines is a hand-picked selection of Granite Belt wines, standing proud as the local reps.  The by-the-glass selection is current and original, with Coravin pours neatly integrated into the set.  There's a contemporary slant to the Australian collection, with classics sharing some of the limelight.  And the international wines are superb.  The list is confident, curated and well-tended, and is a credit to Penny Grant and her team.

Bucci

11/15 James St, Fortitude Valley, Qld
(07) 3252 7848


buccirestaurant.com.au

CUISINE Italian
WINE LIST Tanja Malone
wines ON LIST 85 (19 by the glass)
WINE PRICES$$ ($19-$11 by the glass)

A small, yet beautifully formed, list showcasing the wines of Italy and Australia, with a few Champagnes thrown in for good measure.  It's a carefully-chosen, diverse mix of favourites, Italian classics and contemporary producers.  Wines from quality Australian labels such as Quealy, Delamere and Mayer add class, and there's a broad selection from the classic regions of Italy including a fine range served via Coravin.  Helpful prose is dotted throughout if you are looking for guidance.  All in all, a top little list. Bravo!

Carmodys

Cnr Musgrave & Olsen Aves, Southport, Qld
(07) 5532 1155


southportsharks.com.au

CUISINE Modern Contemporary
WINE LIST Socky Soares
WINEs ON LIST 104 (2 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($10.5-$8.5 by the glass)

Socky Soares presents a personal list of value-for-money wines with a spotlight on organic and biodynamic producers.  There are plenty of well-known big names, plus some high-quality small producers, such as Yangarra and Dominique Portet.  There is also a list of premium wines if you are after a red with age.

Cha Cha Char

Shop 5, Eagle Street Pier, Brisbane, Qld
(07) 3221 9944


chachachar.com.au

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST Cedric Gautier
WINEs ON LIST 350 (42 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($150-$12 by the glass)

Ground zero for Queensland carnivores and a list dripping with great reds to match. It kicks off with a reserve collection of top Shiraz and Cabernet from the Barossa and other places. Coravin is used. There are, of course, many other options but for those looking to a great Aussie red with top meat dishes, this is the place.

The Charming Squire

3/133 Grey St, South Brisbane, Qld
(07) 3077 7254


thecharmingsquire.com.au

CUISINE Modern
WINE LIST Darren Khan
WINEs ON LIST 142 (2 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($19-$10 by the glass)

Despite being a working James Squire brewery, and having a suite of beers on offer, the wine list at The Charming Squire is solid and a more-than-worthy component of the dining experience.  There's a respectable selection of all the classic varieties plus a hearty cellar list for lovers of rich, flavoursome reds.

Cru Bar + Cellar

1/22 James St, Fortitude Valley, Qld
(07) 3252 1744


crubar.com

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LISTChris Walker
WINEs ON LIST 1330 (111 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($210-$9 by the glass)

For a wine lover, visiting Cru Bar + Cellar is like walking into a fantasy.  Over 1300 wines are presented, with over 100 by the glass, thanks to the help of Coravin.  The list is seemingly endless, and with each variety, Australian's best is presented alongside global examples.  There are pages of pinot noir, with Burgundy a highlight, plus a solid selection of nebbiolo and grenache.  Shiraz is, as expected, well-featured, as is cabernet and blends including Bordeaux.  There is admirable complexity in the white offering, with riesling and chardonnay the stars.  Though make the most of this list by trying one of the many quirky varietals and origins, like Nerello Mascalese from Sicily, to make the experience unique.

Customs House

399 Queen St, Brisbane, Qld
(07) 3365 8999


customshouse.com.au

CUISINE  Australian Contemporary
WINE LIST Geoerge Musat
WINEs ON LIST 200 (16 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($15-$11 by the glass)

There is a pleasing composure to the Customs House wine list; it is quietly confident, and obviously tailored to its clientele, with a mix of blue-ribbon favourites and hand-chosen quirky inclusions.  Quality rather than fashion is the overriding philosophy so you can have confidence in the selection.  It is refreshing to see many reds presented with a few years of age, including some by-the-glass.  It is an astute list of quality local and international wines that will delight any die-hard wine lover.

Detour

11 Logan Rd, Woollongabba, Qld
(07) 3217 4880

detourrestaurant.com.au

CUISINE  Contemporary
WINE LIST Dan Finn
WINEs ON LIST 46 (18 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($18-$13 by the glass)

This one-page list hits the spot.  Its youthful in both its approach and the age of the wines.  Snappy fragrant wines, some edgy and challenging, others pure and fragrant; Australian in origin apart from Champagne.  Its a digression from the usual mindset, which is a good thing, offering diners a chance to try something new.  Regarding the master stock salmon with black ants, sesame and wakame, why not try the Exocarpus Nebbiolo?

Ecco Bistro

Shop 8/63 Skyring Tce, Newstead, Qld
(07) 3831 8344

eccobistro.com

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST Mia McIntyre
WINEs ON LIST73 (15 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($28-$12 by the glass)

A small list that punches above its weight.  An astute selection of bubblies, including, including Champagne for $18/glass.  A youthful selection of white wines laden with premier names.  Good variety in the reds, with a top mix of local and international labels.  I look forward to seeing the list evolve with time, perhaps with a cellaring program to introduce some wines with age into the mix.

Embassy Xo

Cnr Duke & Bryan Sts, Noosa Heads, Qld
(07) 5455 4460


embassyxo.com.au

CUISINE Modern Fusion Asian
WINE LIST James Alcock
WINEs ON LIST 100 (28 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($23-$9 by the glass)

Embassy XO presents a slick set of on-trend wines, from tiny polished gems to those that push boundaries.  It is challenging and thrilling, with a wide range of styles on offer.  Be guided by the sommelier to help find the bottle that is right for you, whether you're playing it safe or living on the edge.  It is fabulous to see lists like this outside of the urban precinct.  Much fun to be had here.

The Fireplace

Manor Circle, Sanctuary Cove, Qld
(07) 5530 1234


intercontinentalsanctuarycove.com

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST Sacha Kansky
WINEs ON LIST 352 (21 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($16-$10 by the glass)

There are many jewels to be found in the list at The Fireplace for those who know their wine.  Red wine lovers will enjoy premium wines from tiny producers like Cirillo 1850 Old Vines Grenache and Bekkers Shiraz.  There are plenty of quality wines from big names too like Henschke, Craggy Range and Penfolds.  In the white arena, you will find complex chardonnays from Tolpuddle and Cullen.  And there are many warming fortifieds and whiskies, available by-the-glass, to finish off the meal.

The Fish House

50 Goodwin Tce, Burleigh Heads, Qld
(07) 5535 7725

thefishhouse.com.au

CUISINE Seafood
WINE LIST Corin Peters/ Nicole Does
WINEs ON LIST 299 (23 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($29-$13 by the glass)

A delicious set of vivacious whites and lighter styles of red by-the-glass from top quality producers.  The main list is well-formed, with around 300 bottles to choose from, and is very international in flavour.  Alongside the many current release bottles, is a good spread of aged wine.  All in all, there is plenty of top wine to choose from, including a good selection of contemporary Australian labels.

Gauge

77 Grey St, Brisbane, Qld
(07) 3638 0431

gaugebrisbane.com.au

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST Jack Brooks
WINEs ON LIST 27 (13 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($30-$13 by the glass)

A boundary-pushing list filled with innovative, eclectic wines to challenge your mind and palate.  It is small and nicely formed, with excellent variety.  Left-of-centre producers such as Ochota Barrels, Jauma and Latta sit comfortably alongside the more conventional, though no less interesting, wines from Meadowbank, Grosset and Bellwether.  All the wines, apart from the the Prosecco and Champagne, are from Australia.  Its a rather thrilling list and I recommend tapping into the sommelier's knowledge for guidance if needed.

Gemellini

2/2247 Gold Coast Hwy, Nobby Beach, Qld
(07) 5575 1418

gemellini.com.au

CUISINE Italian
WINE LIST Paul Carney
WINEs ON LIST 50 (15 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($15-$9 by the glass)

Very much the Italian theme to the cuisine and the wine list. There are numerous innovative selections for the adventurous with some classics for those more traditionally inclined. Tignanello matched with Torbreck and Pannell. Plenty of value to be found here.

Hellenika

2235 Gold Coast Hwy, Mermaid Beach, Qld
(07) 5572 8009


hellenika.com.au

CUISINE Greek
WINE LIST Theo Kampolis/Michael Pyrgos / Megan Cox
WINEs ON LIST 470 (30 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($70-$10 by the glass)

Congratulations to the team at Hellenika for continually raising the bar with its wine offering.  The venue has recently re-opened after a transformative renovation, with the wine list more than tripling in size, now with almost 500 labels on offer.  The strong core of Greek wines still stands, with helpful explanatory tasting notes, and there are many to try by-the-glass.  The international section has been dramatically expanded to include premier wines from around the globe.  Australia more than holds its own within this global mix, with a host of top producers on offer.  It's an exciting list, all shiny and new, and more than befitting of this sophisticated Greek establishment.

Homage

617 Grandchester Mount Mort Rd, Grandchester, Qld
1300 179 340


spicersretreats.com

CUISINE Regional Australian
WINE LIST Peter Marchant
WINEs ON LIST 76 (15 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($18-$12 by the glass)

A nicely appointed small list that has all bases covered.  Start the meal with a glass of bubbles: local, Italian or French; or perhaps a cleansing G&T.  The unassuming wine selection is small but deliberate, with well-chosen labels across a range of styles.  It is mostly Australian focused, including some local Granite Belt wines, with the occasional euro addition and some tidy NZ wines.  The chardonnay and pinot selection is small but solid.

Il Centro

Eagle Street Pier, 1 Eagle St, Brisbane, Qld
(07) 3221 6090

il-centro.com.au

CUISINE Italian
WINE LIST Marco Renier/ Richard Robinson
WINEs ON LIST 230 (29 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($38-$10 by the glass)

A Leading Italian-themed restaurant in the Brisbane CBD has the Italian-themed wine list it deserves, by glass and cellar. Thoughtfully sourced from their original home and also newer versions made here, they are joined by an extensive collection representing other styles.

Jam Corner

1 Palmer St, Townsville, Qld
(07) 4721 4900


jamcorner.com.au

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST Matt Merrin
WINEs ON LIST 69 (13 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($15-$9 by the glass)

A solid wine list with food-friendly wines at reasonable prices.  The list has a pleasing order and strong brands, making it a snap to choose a great wine.  There are some global accents including a good selection from New Zealand.  Despite its compact nature, there's still a few reds with age which it is great to see.

Jellyfish

Riverside Boardwalk, Eagle St, Brisbane, Qld
(07) 3220 2202


jellyfishrestaurant.com.au

CUISINE Seafood
WINE LIST Brendan Sinclair
wines ON LIST 233 (30 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($22-$10 by the glass)

A list which will make even the most casual winelover feel right at home. Central CBD is the place for classics and this list oozes with them. There is a reserve list for whites. The emphasis is on the home grown and our Kiwi brethren. A fine list with plenty for all.

Jimmy Wahs

1724 Gold Coast Hwy, Burleigh Heads, Qld
(07) 5659 1180


jimmywahs.com.au

CUISINE Modern Vietnamese
WINE LIST Shelly Greaves
wines ON LIST 44 (24 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($16-$8.5 by the glass)

A compact list that has all bases covered from good bubbly by the glass, to snappy whites that pair well with the modern Vietnamese cuisine.  It is an on-trend selection of contemporary producers including wines from Ochota Barrels, Luke Lambert and Ravensworth.  There are many options by the glass, so you can order different wines to match specific dishes.  There are a few French icons tacked onto the end for those with money to burn.

Kiyomi

Casino Dr, Broadbeach Island, Broadbeach, Qld
(07) 5592 8757

thestargoldcoast.com.au

CUISINE Japanese
WINE LIST Isaac Coleman
wines ON LIST 255 (30 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($24-$10 by the glass)

Lots to love here.  Get into the spirit with a glass of Sake, Umeshu or Yuzushu.  Five bubblies by the glass including vintage Arras.  Plenty of bright, fresh whites and vibrant reds by the glass.  The list is well-laid out with good variety, including Japanese Koshu.  Some lovely New Zealand pinots, as well as some spicy shiraz.  And there are some iconic wines at the back if splashing out.

La Lune

1/109 Melbourne St, South Brisbane, Qld
(07) 3255 0010

lalunewineco.com.au

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST James Foley / Paul McGivern
WINEs ON LIST 127 (27 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($17-$12 by the glass)

A quirky list with many options by-the-glass including vintage Louis Roederer, a picpoul from the Languedoc and a cabernet franc from the Yarra.  One has a sense of discovery sifting through the list as there is a melange of producers and styles with many gems to be found.  Though I found myself longing for a formatting makeover so the true seriousness of the list could shine through.

Locale

62 Hastings St, Noosa Heads, Qld
(07) 5447 5111

localenoosa.com.au

CUISINE Modern Italian
WINE LIST Rio Capurso
WINEs ON LIST 359 (29 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($22-$14 by the glass)

You'll have a solid beverage experience when dining at Locale.  A cocktail is almost obligatory with the extensive range of signature and classics on offer, though there's also lots of joy on the wine-by-the-glass list. Nearly all by-the-bottle labels have helpful, informative descriptions which give the diner the confidence to try something new.  There are also plenty of familiar names.  Numerous choices well-under $100/bottle plus a top spread of high-end wines.  Italian wines are a real highlight.

Long Apron

38-68 Balmoral Rd, Montville, Qld
(07) 5452 1111


spicersretreats.com

CUISINE Modern European
WINE LIST Sarah Hagan
WINEs ON LIST 118 (24 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($25-$12 by the glass)

Relax and unwind at this acclaimed country restaurant with a glass of fine wine in hand.  The Long Apron wine list offers a good mix of contemporary and classic labels at very fair prices.  It is a tailored selection, presenting wines diverse in style and origin.  Plenty of quality wineries such S.C Pannell, Dominique Portet and Yarra Yering plus a few left-of-centre offerings for those who like to experiment.

Mamasan

Shop W159 / 3 Oracle Blvd, Broadbeach, Qld
(07) 5527 5700

mamasanbroadbeach.com

CUISINE Modern Asian
WINE LIST Jeremy Earnshaw
WINEs ON LIST 100 (34 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($18-$9 by the glass)

Food this good needs wine to match!  Over thirty wines by the glass allowing you to match specific courses to different wines.  The quality is high across the board, and there are unexpected highlights such as Japanese koshu and biodynamic tempranillo grenache.  The hundred-strong bottle collection includes Oregon pinot noir and Yalumba's Tri-Centenary Grenache.  Plenty of wines to satisfy, delight and intrigue.

Moo Moo Brisbane

39 Edward St, Brisbane, Qld
(07) 3236 4500


moomoorestaurant.com

CUISINE Steak
WINE LIST Steven Adams / Mark Ganga
WINEs ON LIST 367 (91 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($60-$10 by the glass)

Wine is an essential part of the experience when dining at Moo Moo Brisbane.  It's a stellar list of respected local and international names.  Be amazed by the mammoth selection by-the-glass, with more than 60 wines on offer, including premium reds served from an enomatic.  Connoisseurs can choose prestigious French reds from classic regions, as well as premier Australian wines.  And if after something exclusive, lovers of aged reds will be delighted by owner Steve's 'Reserve Cellar' selection at the rear.

Moo Moo Gold Coast

2685 Gold Coast Hwy, Broadbeach, Qld
(07) 5539 9952


moomoorestaurant.com

CUISINE Steak
WINE LIST Steven Adams / Connor Garland
WINEs ON LIST 235 (58 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($22-$10 by the glass)

Moo Moo Gold Coast presents a consistently impressive wine offering, with a sweep of top Australian wines, and some worthy international additions.  The clarity of its presentation encourages experimentation, with chatty, informative prose to help set the scene.  Quality is solid, with value considered at all price points.  Familiar, respectable wines are plentiful, both in the main list and the huge by-the-glass offering, plus there's a cellar reserve selection of hearty South Australian reds if spending big.

Mr Chester

T2 850 Ann St, Brisbane, Qld

mrchesterwine.com

CUISINE Tapas
WINE LIST Luke Reimers
WINEs ON LIST 50 (40 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($16-$13 by the glass)

Mr Chester is the place to go to challenge your mind and your palate.  Enjoy the small, contemporary selection of quirky producers, encompassing a good range of wine styles.  Australian wines take the spotlight, with international wines only making an appearance in the sparklings and aperitifs.  Don't be afraid to take direction from the sommelier to find the wine that is perfectly suited to you.

Noosa Waterfront

142 Gympie Tce, Noosaville, Qld
(07) 5474 4444


noosawaterfrontrestaurant.com.au

CUISINE Italian
WINE LIST Andrea Ravezzani
WINEs ON LIST 264 (39 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($44-$9 by the glass)

An impressive list with great depth and diversity which melds fine Australian wine with Italian greats.  The by-the-glass list is so extensive that it will be hard to bypass.  However, the main list is teaming with prized wine from premier international and local wineries, so you'll be spoilt for choice.  As expected, there's a top range of sangiovese and nebbiolo, and alternative varietals feature prominently.  To top it off, there's a stunning G&T selection as well as breezy signature cocktails.  Multiple visits will be necessary to fully explore this great list.

Nu Nu

1 Veivers Rd, Palm Cove, Qld
(07) 4059 1880


nunu.com.au

CUISINE Contemporary Australian
WINE LIST Miles Browne / Hayley Wano
WINEs ON LIST 480 (23 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($21-$11 by the glass)

There aren't too many things better than sipping fine wine, though when paired with a beautiful view over Palm Cove in tropical north Queensland, life seems perfect.  Sommeliers Miles Browne & Hayley Wano at Nu Nu have compiled an eclectic mix of wines, from around the globe to more than satisfy the curiosity of their customers.  Small wineries are the focus, though there are also some familiar labels too.  The beers and cocktails are a great place to start when the weather is hot (luckily its always hot!), as is the extensive wine-by-the-glass offering.

Ochre

43 Shields St, Cairns, Qld
(07) 4051 0100


ochrerestaurant.com.au

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST Craig Squire
WINEs ON LIST 84 (36 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $ ($17-$9 by the glass)

Watch the boats sail by at Trinity Inlet with a glass in one hand, wattle seed damper in the other.  Ochre Restaurant is a stalwart of the Cairns restaurant scene, serving up locally sourced food from the tropical north.  Pair dishes accented with lemon myrtle, pepper berry and finger lime with affordable Australian wine.  The wine list is appropriately tailored to the warm climate and is filled with quality producers such as Giant Steps and Jim Barry, plus a few gems from lesser-known wineries like Yangarra and Stefano Lubiana. There's also a good number of Granite Belt wines on offer.

Otto Brisbane

Level 4, 480 Queen St, Brisbane, Qld
(07) 3835 2888


ottoristorante.com.au/brisbane

CUISINE Modern Italian
WINE LIST Alan Hunter
WINEs ON LIST 240 (36 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($65-$12 by the glass)

An Italian theme runs through this list in line with the restaurant's cuisine.  Separate sections on Italian wines as well as local wines made from Italian grapes.  There's an astute selection of contemporary Australian and New Zealand producers.  And overall, there is a good mix of fresh listings and cellared wines.  This list has recently been upgraded, which is great to see, and there are so many delicious drops that one visit will not be enough.

The Peak

Wilkinsons Rd, Maryvale, Qld
(07) 4666 1083


spicersretreats.com

CUISINE Contemporary Australian
WINE LIST Peter Marchant
WINEs ON LIST 104 (20 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($18-$12 by the glass)

Here's a list with a fair amount of flair.  An eclectic selection of hand-picked wines diverse in style and origin, including prestigious producers like Cullen and Felton Road, to quirky hip labels like Unico Zelo.  An exciting range of wines-by-the-glass with a wide varietal spread.  There is a small yet strong selection of premium chardonnay, pinot noir and cabernet, including wines with age.  There are many jewels to be found if you have money to spend, just keep an eye on vintage.

Pig N Whistle Indooroopilly

Station Rd, Indooroopilly, Qld
(07) 3878 8899


pignwhistle.com.au

CUISINE British Themed
WINE LIST Brendan McFarlane
WINEs ON LIST 152 (14 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($13-$9 by the glass)

A solid selection, with wine for everyone's taste and budget.  Respectable labels are the hallmark of this list so diners can choose with confidence.  In the cellar selection, there are plenty of classic Australian reds with considerable age.  A well-balanced list offering top value - where else in Australia can you drink Champagne for $16/glass!

Reef Seafood

76 Skyring Tce, Brisbane, Qld
(07) 3257 7554

reefseafood.com.au

CUISINE Seafood
WINE LIST Daniel Aitkin
WINEs ON LIST 95 (71 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($90-$8 by the glass)

It is rare to find such a grand and diverse selection of wines to pair with your grilled seafood and sushi.  Daniel Atkin presents an extraordinary selection by-the-glass with over seventy on offer, including Dom Perignon and Cape Mentelle Wallcliffe SBS, plus there's a top selection via Coravin including rich reds like Brokenwood Graveyard shiraz.  There is also an extensive selection of beers and a subset of quality sake.

Rick Shores

3/43 Goodwin Tce, Burleigh Heads, Qld
(07) 5630 6611

rickshores.com.au

CUISINE Asian
WINE LIST Michael Leopold
WINEs ON LIST 119 (28 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($24-$10 by the glass)

Rick Shores offers diners a contemporary Asian fare and a wine list to match.  There is an excellent selection by the glass including premier producers such as Grosset, Stefano Lubiana and Pyramid Valley.  By the bottle, the wines are arranged by style, and it is a mix of small modern producers and well-respected international labels.  The selection of chardonnay and pinot noir is particularly astute, as is the spread of spirits, particularly gin.  Wine lovers will adore the sophistication and the diversity of this high-quality list.

Sails Noosa

75 Hastings St, Noosa Heads, Qld
(07) 5447 4235


sailsnoosa.com.au

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST Scott Estrich / Bernie Molloy
WINEs ON LIST 686 (42 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($52-$9 by the glass)

When dining at Sails in Noosa, you simply must start with a flute of fizz (8 by-the-glass), if only to give yourself time to peruse the outstanding wine list.  Yes, it is filled with dreamy icon wines like Salon Champagne, DRC and Bonneau du Martray, but it is the heart of the list, with its excellent depth and diversity, which will be the highlight for most wine lovers.  Beautiful bright whites to match the breezy climate, including an astute set of rieslings.  A sweep of contemporary chardonnays and a fabulous selection of light reds, with pinot the star.  Australian shiraz and cabernet stand proud, many with age, and producers spotlights enhance the offering.  Familiar names abound, accented by little-known gems, with quality at the forefront of every listing.  The Burgundy and Bordeaux collection is simply breathtaking and will attract wine buffs from around the globe.  Its a stunning list in every way, and will appeal to all.

Spirit House

20 Ninderry Rd, Yandina, Qld
(07) 5446 8994


spirithouse.com.au

CUISINE Asian / Thai
WINE LIST Yann Audran
WINEs ON LIST 96 (22 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($22-$10 by the glass)

A lot of thought has gone into this list, to present a selection that is both approachable and exciting.  The wine-by-the-glass list is remarkably extensive, with accessible and esoteric styles presented.  The white wine offering is perfectly synchronised with the menu, with many fresh and engaging wines on offer.  There is also a good range of international wines.  And the hand-chosen nature of the selection allows you to experiment with confidence.

Stokehouse Q

Sidon St, Southbank, Qld
(07) 3020 0600


stokehouseq.com.au

CUISINE Contemporary
WINE LIST James Smith / Tyler Austin
WINEs ON LIST 550 (62 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($160-$11 by the glass)

Wine lovers of all ilks will adore turning the pages of this impressive wine list, where there is something for everyone.  Quirky new-age wines sit comfortably alongside recognisable brands and classics.  There are familiar entry-level wines, a strong core of contemporary Australian producers as well as prestigious international icons.  The selection of wines-by-the-glass served via Coravin is outstanding and allows one to experience, for a price, premier wines including from elite Burgundian producers such as Armand Rousseau and Domaine de la Romanée-Conti.

Tamarind Cairns

35-41 Wharf St, Cairns, Qld
(07) 4030 8897


reefcasino.com.au

CUISINE Contemporary
WINE LIST Akshay D Sawant
WINEs ON LIST 126 (62 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($18-$10 by the glass)

Tamarind presents a well-chosen selection of classic brands and varietals.  Henschke and Penfolds wines are well represented, and you can enjoy top Yalumba wines by-the-glass, such as Virgilius, Octavius and The Signature, via Coravin.   There are plenty of bright white wines to match the contemporary Asian cuisine, and there's a cellar selection of hearty reds for big spenders.

Tamarind Maleny

88 Obi Ln, South Maleny, Qld
1300 311 429


spicersretreats.com/spicers-tamarind-retreat/

CUISINE Modern Asian - Thai
WINE LIST Peter Marchant
WINEs ON LIST 52 (13 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($16-$12 by the glass)

A well-formed, concise list that delights with its balance and energy.  It's an astute mix of stylistically diverse wines from skilled winemakers, with favourites sitting comfortably alongside lesser-known, hand-picked gems. The selection is tailored to the cuisine, with wines conveniently grouped by style, and matched wines are available for the Chef's Selection.  There's also a good range of beers and spirits, including a top set of gin.

Tides Waterfront

Level 1, Minchinton St & The Esplanade, Calounrda, Qld
(07) 5438 2304


tideswaterfront.com.au

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST Michael Mulhearn
WINEs ON LIST 100 (32 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($20-$9 by the glass)

A solid wine list, nicely composed and presented, with many seafood-friendly wines to match the cuisine.  A respectable spread of dependable labels with prices to suit everyone's budget.  There's also a good listing of reds with age.  If you want to try a few different wines, choose the 5 or 7-course tasting menu with affordable wines to match.

Toobirds

Gnd Lvl, 127 Creek St, Brisbane City, Qld
(07) 3221 4800

toobirds.com

CUISINE Mediterranean & Grill
WINE LIST Royston Lau
WINEs ON LIST44 (25 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $ ($14-$10 by the glass)

Its tiny, but worthy!  Less than fifty wines on offer, and more than half by the glass.  Enjoy a glass of Champagne Jacquart while you ponder what to have next?  Perhaps a Canberra District sangiovese or a maybe a bottle of Sancerre? It's an individual list, no doubt reflecting the personal tastes and of sommelier Royston Lau - don't be afraid to ask for some guidance as there are some great wines to be found.

Urbane

181 Mary St, Brisbane, Qld
(07) 3229 2271


urbanerestaurant.com

CUISINE Australian
WINE LIST Daniel Tapia
WINEs ON LIST 650 (32 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$$ ($17-$13 by the glass)

Urbane has a seemingly endless collection of wine to pair with its beautifully presented food.  An original suite is offered by-the-glass of mainly young wines, plus a few full-bodied reds with age.  With wines ordered by price, under varietal headings, you'll find wines of different origins and ages side-by-side, though be sure to tap into the advice of the sommeliers if guidance is needed.  Australian wines constitute the heart of the list, though there are also many gorgeous international drops including a lengthy Burgundy collection and a set from South America.  Local producer spotlights add interest and flair.

Vaquero

344 Sandgate Rd, Albion, Qld
(07) 3862 3606


vaquerodining.com.au

CUISINE Spanish / Australian
WINE LIST Shane Bricklebank and Sam Kent
WINEs ON LIST 107 (18 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($16-$10 by the glass)

A solid selection of wines with plenty of less-than-ordinary inclusions.  Good to see lesser known wines like Austins & Co and Latta on the list alongside established producers like Cullen, Howard Park and Grosset.  Care has been taken to include wines of quality at all price points.  Be sure to start the evening with a beer as the selection is eclectic.

Vue Wine Bar

32 Anzac Pde, Yeppoon, Qld
(07) 4939 8034

vuewinebar.com

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST James Alcock
WINEs ON LIST 50 (19 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($21-$9 by the glass)

The residents of Yeppoon must be thrilled to have this quirky wine bar on their doorstep.  Sip and savour the fabulous 2011 Meadowbank Blanc de Blancs or instead try a local Queensland vermetino by-the-glass.  There is also a selection served via Coravin.  By the bottle, the selection is quirky and varied with wines thoughtfully organised by style.  Small contemporary producers dominate the selection.

Vue175

423 Ruffles Rd, Willow Vale, Qld
(07) 5546 7411


vue175.com.au

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST Fabio Bravatà
WINEs ON LIST 125 (29 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($16-$12 by the glass)

Relax and gaze at the wide-sweeping view with glass in hand.  The wine list is full of familiar labels that have broad appeal.  The selection is largely Australian, though there are a few international options including some fancy Champagnes if celebrating.  There's also a selection of full-bodied reds with age.

Wandering Cooks

1 Fish Ln, South Brisbane, Qld
(07) 3844 6000

wanderingcooks.com.au

CUISINE Nightly Rotation of  Local and International cuisine
WINE LIST Mel Holmes
WINEs ON LIST50 (16 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($16-$9 by the glass)

An on-trend vibrant list filled with wines that push boundaries and bend the rules.  Its tight and compact with edgy small Australian producers such as Tom Shobrook and BK Wines.  The beer list is wildly exciting with easy-drinking numbers, hoppy styles and those that are 'wild and sour'.   The spirits are almost all from Australia which is mighty darn fine.  Enjoy the ride...

Wasabi

2 Quamby Pl, Noosa Heads, Qld
(07) 5449 2443


wasabigroup.com.au

CUISINE Japanese
WINE LIST Lara Graham and The Wine Team
WINEs ON LIST160 (19 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($23-$16 by the glass)

Be wowed by the superb selection of Japanese whisky, where you can try a flight from the Nikka distillery.  The cocktails are unique and mesmerising with strong Japanese accents.  Or perhaps the plum wine Umeshu, or Sake, is more to your taste?  The wine-by-the-glass selection complements the food perfectly, and the main list is fabulously international.  There's also an impressive range of prestige Champagne.

Wolfe East Brisbane

989 Stanley St, East Brisbane, Qld
(07) 3891 7772

thewolfeeastbrisbane.com.au

CUISINE Modern Australian
WINE LIST Paul Mcgivern
WINEs ON LIST55 (16 by the glass)
WINE PRICES $$ ($15-$13 by the glass)

A superb example of how a wine list of around 50 wines can offer a detailed examination and exploration of local and international wine trends, all the while offering patrons loads of super delicious, interesting options. Kudos, team The Wolfe East Brisbane. It's a list that runs with familiar Champagne, touchstones from Australia's blue chip wine community, but also looks forward with wines from emerging varieties, regions and progressive producers. Ipso, you get Ashton Hills, By Farr and Cullen coupled to new gen wine projects from Joshua Cooper and Powell & Son. There's serious wines from Burgundy elites like Bruno Clair, Olivier Leflaive and Bernard Defaix, but they meet their equals in prestigious New Zealanders Craggy Range, Escarpment and Dog Point, indeed, this list is awash with 'serious names'. A pleasure drinking here for its tight curation and high quality wines.