Public Wine Shop
Winemakers have been adding extra sulphur dioxide to their wines to extend shelf life since ancient Roman times (a small amount is produced during fermentation), but more recently natural-wine producers have begun to question the value of the ubiquitous preservative, which is added to almost all wines made in Australia and elsewhere. Some drinkers claim it gives them a headache and worsens their hangover.
Campbell Burton? He just doesn’t like the taste of too much sulphur, which is why every one of the 200 wines in the temperature-controlled cabinets at his Public Wine Shop is organically farmed and free from added sulphur dioxide. Australian minimal-intervention stars such as Manon, Limus, Tom Shobbrook and Jordy Kay are fixtures, alongside similarly minded labels from Italy, Spain, Austria, Germany and France in particular. A smaller number of beers, spirits and organic, un-sulphured ciders are also in the mix.
Inspired by venues such as City Wine Shop (where Burton once worked), Bourke Street’s Self Preservation, defunct Northcote diner Merricote and Sydney’s inimitable P&V Wine & Liquor Merchants, Public Wine Store has seats for 20 people and a little galley-style kitchen with a French-leaning menu of seasonal plates and pastas, mainly revolving around seafood.
You can also choose from a selection of cheese, charcuterie and fancy tinned fish. Or skip the food entirely and go straight for the wine, which takes up a full wall of the tiny shop.
The idea is that you pick a bottle from the shelf and Burton retrieves its temperature-controlled counterpart from upstairs, guaranteeing a perfect glass every time. Enjoy your selection in the bright front area, or outside on the leafy footpath.
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