City Winery will open the doors of its Fortitude Valley venue and pour its first glasses of rose, chardonnay, shiraz and everything in between in March.
Owners Adam Penberthy and acclaimed winemaker Dave Cush are transforming the Wandoo Street warehouse, formerly home to Campos Coffee, to bring the micro-winery to life. The main space will operate as a cellar door, winery and barrel room during the day, but when the sun goes down it will morph into a wine bar just a stone’s throw from James Street’s thriving dining precinct. There will also be a modern Australian restaurant headed by Travis Crane, as well as a private dining room and cellar.
City Winery is just the third urban winery to open in Australia and one of the first in Brisbane. The venue is a dream come true for Cush, who was making wine out of a refrigerated shipping container when he and his family returned to Queensland following several years at the Spring Vale Vineyard in Tasmania. Cush said City Winery would be a unique addition to Brisbane’s growing wine scene. “We’ll be providing experiences that you won’t be able to do at any other venue in town,” he said.
In addition to regular wine tastings, customers will be able to stomp on grapes during vintage, assist with bottling, attend wine blending workshops and benchmark tastings. Cush, who sources grapes from some of Australia’s best wine regions, said he wanted to break down some of the stereotypes surrounding winemaking. “Winemakers are just farmers and regular people,” he said. “Drinking wine is fun but so is making it.” The City Winery team are also keen to introduce people to lesser known varietals like sagrantino, fiano and sangiovese. “We want people to come in, enjoy a glass of wine and accidentally learn heaps,” Cush said.
Penberthy said the Wandoo Street warehouse was the perfect site for City Winery because of its size and close location to the Brisbane CBD. “The cellar door will double as a function space for 200 people, perfect for corporate events, wedding receptions, birthdays or vintage experiences for people interested in the winemaking process,” he said. “The restaurant will seat 70 people and the private dining room will cater for a further 20 guests.”
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