Everyone’s had the experience of walking into a bottle shop and having no idea what to choose. You might be looking for a pinot noir but there’s a hundred different names and price tags with nothing on the labels to tell you what’s good (and what’s not).
That is exactly the feeling Clint Elvin and Johnathan Hepner (both ex-Batch Brewing Company) have tried to avoid. Their solution is Bucket Boys, a bottle shop that’s run more like an art gallery or a brewery. The main aim is to stock every style of beer and wine but only one, or a few, of each variety.
Beers include a mix of local brewers and international brands, while the spirits and wine selection are exclusively Australian and family-owned. Beer is the main focus so the more popular styles will have a small range, but wines are strictly one bottle per grape variety or style.
The duo has installed a tasting counter with a rotating selection of four tap beers (usually two local, two international), some of which are brewed by a collaboration between Bucket Boys and Willie the Boatman.
Above the counter, which is designed to mimic the feel of a brewery bar, is a selection of growlers or squealers (measured brown glass bottles) waiting to be filled with tapped beer to take home. Tastings cost a couple of bucks.