Mediterranean-fuelled wine bar and restaurant opens by Sandringham Beach

The team behind Riserva wine bar in Melbourne’s southeast will open a new wine bar and restaurant by the beach on the other side of the city.

Baia Di Vino (meaning bay of wine) is channelling the Mediterranean in the suburb of Sandringham with a seafood-driven menu and ocean views.

The space is put together by Samantha Eades Design (behind the fit-outs at Carlton Wine Room, Chin Chin, Mr Miyagi, Nomada and Riserva), and will make the most of its setting with broad windows over banquette seating, and a nod to Italian architecture with detailed floor tiles and a marble bar. There’s also a private dining room, and the entire venue is available for function hire.

The five co-owners come from all corners of hospitality. Frank Ciorciari has fronted Italian cafes and restaurants in Melbourne for more than a decade, with Riserva being his most recent, opening in 2017. Also on the ticket are Anthony Silvestre, former manager at Riserva and Kettle Black cafe, Dino Mohsin, who is head chef here, and Vivian Man (ex-Rockpool and Spice Temple front of house), Baia Di Vino’s sommelier.

Mohsin’s menu takes influences from Sicily and the south coast of Italy, with dishes like fried sardines with fennel cream and orange emulsion; calamari stuffed with black olive salsa and cous cous; Maltagliati braised lamb with Sicilian olives and pangrattato. 

The Brodetto Di Pesce, a seafood stew that originated in the Naples region, uses prized local seafoods like Port Arlington mussels, Cloudy Bay clams king prawns, scampi and scallops in a prawn broth.

Mohsin steers away from the traditional with dishes like open beetroot ravioli: two discs of vivid red pasta sandwiching generous blobs of goat's cheese, topped with roasted hazelnuts, brown butter and sage. 

Man’s wine list will be almost entirely available by the glass, using a Coravin wine-preserving system, that drills through the cork to reach the wine, without fully opening the bottle.

Baia Di Vino will be open to the public on April 7.

Photography: Jake Roden.