Sydney's La Salut Has Just Won Gold at 2023's International Star Wine List of the Year Awards
Melbourne's Embla, Sydney's Bentley Restaurant + Bar, Margaret River's Settler's Tavern and Perth's Rockpool Bar & Grill also received nominations.
July 11, 2023
Curating the perfect wine list is an oft-underrated skill. How do you balance pleasing the crowd while also pushing the envelope? Creating something far-reaching while still carving out an identity? Well, a group of Australian venues have been recognised at the international Star Wine List of the Year awards for 2023 for doing just that, with a Sydney bar taking out the top prize in one of the categories.
The Star Wine List of the Year International Final took place in Stockholm in June, with Redfern's La Salut becoming the first-ever Australian venue to ever claim gold in one of its fields.
The Cleveland Street haunt that specialises in Spanish and Catalonian wines, with an onus on minimal-intervention drops, was nominated for two different awards: Best Medium-Sized Wine List and the Special Jury Prize. While London's Michelin-starred Trivet took out the top mid-sized list gong for venues offering 200–600 wines, La Salut was crowned the champion in the Special Jury Prize.
This award recognises "a venue that has done something extra with their wine list, such as the direction, the style or the value". La Salut beat out finalists from across Europe, North America, Africa and Asia to claim the prize, being praised for the exemplary spotlight it places on Spain's best vino and the storytelling it achieves through its curation.
"It often feels like Spanish wine is largely ignored by wine-focused venues in Australia, which is a huge shame considering that Spain is currently producing some of the most exhilarating wine in the world," says La Salut co-owner Matt Swieboda.
"I suppose our philosophy might be different to others in that we want to really push guests to try wine styles that they may never have had the opportunity to have tried."
Elsewhere, other Australian spots received nominations but didn't claim gold. Melbourne's Embla was nominated for the Best Short List for bars with under 200 wines, Bentley Restaurant & Wine Bar was nominated in the Grand Prix for bars with over 600 wines, and Perth's Rockpool Bar & Grill received nominations for both the best wine list with Austrian wines and Best Sparkling Wine List.
A couple of regional favourites also picked up nominations, with Margaret River's Setter's Tavern recognised in the sustainability-focused category and Mornington Peninsula's Ten Minutes by Tractor earning some love in the Best By the Glass List category.
You can start making plans for a few wine-fuelled nights around Australia — and abroad ‚ by browsing the full list of nominees and winners.
For more information about the Star Wine List of the Year, head to the awards' website.
Top image: Nikki To.
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