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Samuel Pepys

A boutique beer, wine and spirit-selling bottle shop from the Bomba crew.
By Caterina Hrysomallis
April 21, 2017
By Caterina Hrysomallis
April 21, 2017

Shane Barrett adores wine. After shopping at specialty supermarket Terra Madre on Northcote's High Street one evening, the co-owner of Melbourne CBD Spanish tapas restaurant and rooftop bar Bomba, was on the hunt for a bottle — but was alarmed when he found no liquor stores in the vicinity.

So, he sought to solve the problem himself with longtime Bomba business partners Jesse Gerner, Andrew Fisk and Kelly O'Loghlan. The four have opened a brand new bottle shop which focuses on boutique producers who practice sustainable, organic and biodynamic principals, alongside handpicked international wines. And they've named it for a fellow wine lover, Samuel Pepys.

"Samuel Pepys was a naval administrator in London in the 1600s," says Barrett. "He was a diarist who loved good wine and food. If you read any of his entries they're quite entertaining­­ — he was an old day foodie for lack of better words."

The interiors (which the boys conceived themselves) are homely, welcoming shoppers with a cluster of suspended plants that overlook wire racks caressing bottles. Various wines are also available to taste, you'll find the daily offerings written on the chalkboard by the counter.

"We want people to feel comfortable coming here and spend a bit of town browsing, we have products the general public won't be familiar with," says Barrett. "We all travel to Europe about two times a year and import a lot of wines ourselves," he adds, referring to their distribution company, Armada Imports.

The store hosts about 400 wines, a 200 strong spirit list, a full Riedel glassware range and a selection of cigars (la-di-da). Local wines from Patrick Sullivan are available, as are bottles from the Mornington Peninsula's Polperro Estate.

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