The Wineslinger Awards have revealed the Top 50 Venues for 2020, serving up the ultimate wine guru’s guide to the best haunts in Australia right now.
Established in 2018 by Young Gun of Wine founder Rory Kent, Wineslinger is an annual award to help lead people to places around Australia where they can enjoy a glass of wine, while at the same time encouraging the creativity and excellence in the industry.
Wineslinger is voted on by more than 100 of the country’s leading sommeliers, winemakers, hospitality tastemakers and journalists.
This year’s Top 50 includes 14 venues from New South Wales, 12 from Victoria, eight from Western Australia, five each from South Australia, Tasmania and Queensland, and one from ACT — with 20 venues named for the first time this year.
While many favourites have kept their spots, the raft of new entries shows what a dynamic industry it is.
From a temple of French-influenced Vietnamese cuisine in Albany – 500km south of Perth – to a Brisbane favourite that pairs Chinese regional snacks with unicorn bottles.
From a two-decade-old champion of Tasmanian produce to a nearby wine bar that opened its doors mid-pandemic.
From a Sydney CBD pasta-focused diner by lo-fi wine pioneers to a McLaren Vale classic in the form of its life.
From a natural wine mecca with house-made smallgoods to a regional Victorian wine-store-deli-wine-bar that would be the envy of any capital city.
Voting is now open to the public for the People’s Choice Award.
In response to how tough it has been for the hospitality industry this year, Wineslinger is supporting Tip Jar with a $1 donation for every member of the public* that enters the Wineslinger People’s Choice competition.
Tip Jar is a hospitality relief fund that raises and directs money to those in the industry that need it most. Upon voting on the People’s Choice, individuals can also add to the donations going to Tip Jar if they wish.
For the first time, each trophy-winning Wineslinger will receive two immersive wine experiences – one in Victoriaˆ hosted by Mike Aylward at Ocean Eight and one in South Australia** hosted by Prue, Stephen and Justine Henschke with Henschke Wines.
“Covid-19 has made it a pretty tough year for venues nationwide, with forced closures across the industry,” Rory Kent says.
“We’ve all been bottled up. Some adapted by pivoting to selling wine retail and food as takeaway, some others battened down the hatches and waited for the storm to pass, while others cut their losses and shut up shop. Right now is a time when venues need support and recognition more than ever. It’s a time to celebrate those places and hospitality professionals that we love.
“Additionally, we’re determined to raise funds through Tip Jar that will feed, house, employ, upskill and support the food and beverage industry.”
This year’s Wineslinger trophies include top spot Wineslinger, Best New Haunt, the Maverick which recognises a venue pushing the boundaries of possibility, and the publicly voted People’s Choice.
Everyone that votes in the People’s Choice can go into the draw to win a host of prizes including a Liebherr wine cabinet, a year’s supply of wine from www.younggunofwine.com, and curated red and white wine packs from Henschke.
People’s Choice voting is now live online via www.younggunofwine.com/wineslinger. Voting closes on Monday 19 October at 12pm.
The 2020 Wineslinger trophy winners will be revealed in a virtual presentation on Monday 19 October.
Wineslinger 2020 Top 50 Venues
Bar Rochford, Canberra
NEW SOUTH WALES
10 William Street, Paddington
Alberto’s Lounge, Sydney
Bentley Restaurant & Bar, Sydney
Bibo Wine Bar, Double Bay
Dear Sainte Eloise, Potts Point
Fix Wine, Sydney
Fleet, Brunswick Heads
Love, Tilly Devine, Darlinghurst
Ode Bar, Bondi
Poly, Surry Hills
Where’s Nick, Marrickville
WyNo x Bodega, Surry Hills
Cru Bar + Cellar, Fortitude Valley
La Lune Wine Co, South Brisbane
La Lupa, West End
Maeve Wine Bar, South Brisbane
Snack Man, Fortitude Valley
Leigh Street Wine Room, Adelaide
Mother Vine, Adelaide
The Salopian Inn, McLaren Vale
The Summertown Aristologist, Summertown
Tom McHugo’s Hobart Hotel, Hobart
Photo credit: Geralds Bar (Duncan Wright).
Bar Liberty, Fitzroy
Carlton Wine Room, Carlton
City Wine Shop, Melbourne
Etta, Brunswick East
France-Soir, South Yarra
Geralds Bar, Carlton North
Napier Quarter, Fitzroy
Old Palm Liquor, Brunswick East
Union Street Wine, Geelong
Lalla Rookh, Perth
Le Rebelle, Mount Lawley
Lulu La Delizia, Subiaco
Madalena’s Bar, South Fremantle
Petition Wine Merchant, Perth
Settlers Tavern, Margaret River
Wines of While, Perth
Main photo credit: Madalena’s Bar (Duncan Wright).