Hemingway's Wine Room
You'll find red banquettes, Euro-accented fare and a cocktail list filled with Ernest Hemingway favourites at this art deco bar.
Bringing a touch of 1920s glam to East Melbourne, Hemingway's Wine Room has made its post-lockdown return, following a short-lived launch of less than two weeks back when the doors first opened in June. After cementing itself in the hearts of local residents with its elegant delivery offering — Maisonette by Hemingway's — the venue's now getting to make a proper debut.
A double shopfront on Wellington Parade has been transformed into a chic, vintage-inspired wine bar and brasserie that nods to the classic 20s-era haunts of New York and Paris. Art deco features abound, while a bold colour palette of black and red rounds it out in unmistakably French style. In the kitchen, Head Chef Patrick Dang (Sydney's Salt, Kyneton's Royal George and his own much-hyped Hong Kong venue Saam) has drawn on wide-roaming experience to create a sophisticated, Euro-accented menu, with two-to-five course prix fixe options also available.
Aussie produce is celebrated throughout, across dishes like the scallop tartare starring foie gras rillette, roast Aylesbury duck teamed with charred turnip and caramelised pineapple, and a sweet corn agnolotti with cheddar fondue. On Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays, a $109 per person long lunch offering will see you unwinding over a two-course feed matched with free-flowing wine poured from magnums.
Assembled by Co-Owner and Sommelier Glen Bagnara, the rest of the wine list celebrates both the old world and the new, with a thoughtful range of bottles alongside an oft-changing rotation of premium pours by the glass. Meanwhile, a cocktail lineup showcases five favourite sips of Ernest Hemingway himself, reimagined with modern, high-end ingredients. Settle into a banquette and tumble back in time with help from the rye- and mezcal-based Spice Racket, or perhaps the Dame Blanche — a decadent sour blending Four Pillars Rare Gin, apricot brandy and lemon myrtle syrup.