Food and Drink


Wine Stores – The Vino Quest

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There are two types of folks in this world (a gross generalisation, but let it slide): those who like everything to be the same and those who love surprises. I am happy to admit I fall into the latter category, particularly when it comes to wine shopping.

I will grant you that the wine chain stores (Dan Murphys, Vintage Cellars, etc) have their place in the wine shopping hierarchy, but for me they almost never provide that essential element of surprise or the ‘thrill of the hunt’ moment that my favourite destinations often do. The strength of the chain stores is that they offer an extensive selection of reasonably large production wines at pretty good, if not the best, prices in town (though I have often found this to be untrue).

If, on the other hand, you have, or are developing, the vino bug and you scour the wine magazines, newspaper columns and websites for pointers on how to enjoy a slightly different wine, then the stores listed below may be of interest to you.

These small, independent wine stores are fantastic repositories of wine knowledge and offer up a far more interesting selection of winemakers than the Big Boys, but even as I write this they’re under threat and disappearing at an alarming rate.

Last month, Coles gobbled up the independent Yarraville Cellars and the great & esoteric Randall’s, while the online independent giant Cellarmasters was bought by Woolies. In the not too distant future the Australian wine world will be very much like Henry Ford’s Model T — you can have any colour (wine) as long as it’s black (it’s on our industrial wine stock list).

And the Big Boys already scarf up a decent chunk of your vinous dollars. Just look at this list, Who Makes Your Wine. How many of these bottles have you bought in the last year. Scary, huh? Support your local wine shop — fast.

Seddon Wine Store
2/101 Victoria Street, Seddon
9687 4817

Cloud Wine
317 Clarendon Street, South Melbourne 9699 6700
Shop 10, Dendy Plaza
34 Church Street, Brighton 9553 8416

Blackhearts & Sparrows Wine Purveyors
88 Punt Road, Windsor 9510 6385
131 Lygon Street, Brunswick East 9380 1831
113 – 115 Scotchmer Street, North Fitzroy 9486 8046

City Wine Shop
159 Spring Street, Melbourne
9654 6657

Rathdowne Cellars
348 Rathdowne Street, North Carlton
9349 3366

Prince Wine Store
177 Bank Street, South Melbourne  9686 3033
2a Acland Street, St. Kilda 9536 1155

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