Denton Wine Bar
Simon Denton (Japanese-influenced bar Hihou and basement eatery Izakaya Den) is behind this simple European-style wine bar. It’s doing just a few things, but doing them well. Its MO is interesting and inexpensive wine, and simple, approachable food.
Given Denton owns a vineyard in the Yarra Valley and employs the massively gifted Luke Lambert to make wine for him, it makes sense to serve the stuff. For $10 he’ll pour you a Denton pinot, a chardy or some nebiollo rosè.
Denton's also serving wine made by his mates – Mac Forbes, Dormilona, Jamsheed, Ravensworth – plus a few more extravagant bottles of barolo if you’re up for spending more. There are just three beers (Furphy, Moretti and Peroni Red) and four spirits (gin, Campari, Antico Rosso and pastis). Teetotals can have a lemonade.
There’s outside seating and a couple of booths, and despite the Euro-theme, not a single bentwood in sight.
To eat there are just six dishes. They’re seasonal and simple: cured meat and cheeses, salmon carpaccio, and porterhouse with cress and ricotta. A highlight is a plate of Black Russian tomatoes, tarragon and blood plum served with olive oil and a dash of red-wine vinegar.