Dear Sainte Eloise

Features

wine bar
bar food
dine at the bar
notable wine list

The team behind Waterman’s Lobster Co, Jasmine Natterer and Matt Swieboda (Love, Tilly Devine) and Nathanial Hatwel (Mercado), have turned the space into a wine bar with a few food offerings from chef Ben Abiad (ex-Sean’s Panorama). The name, Dear Sainte Eloise, is a reference from George Orwell’s memoir, Down and Out in Paris and London.

As wine is the focus of this venue, this may not be the place to go for a proper meal, though the food on offer is entirely appropriate for the setting. The menu changes every few days, influenced by seasons and produce availability.

Expect dishes such as whole burrata with fresh mint and charred bread; snake beans with pecorino; and “roe boats” of sphere-shaped potato rosti with a dollop of peachy mullet roe on top.

The 400-strong wine list may cause a lengthy pause in conversation. But the list, somewhat like a directory, is educational, affordable and easy to follow. Wines by the glass start at $10.

The space, designed by Ian Kanik, is warm and seats about 40 people. Entry is via a fairly non-descript closed door, with only two pew stools and a gold plaque as indicators of its presence. There’s an excerpt from George Orwell’s memoir, written across an entire wall, and wine bottles take up the majority of the remaining wall space. The timber blinds in the windows make it feel particularly private and European.

You’ll likely find hospitality people here for an after-work drink and snack. It’s also the perfect place for solo diners to settle in for the evening.