Cake is for kids, but Cake Wines is the perfect treat at the end of the working week
Redfern is changing. You might have still been denying the truth when the small bars moved in. Perhaps you refused to see it when the queues started forming outside excellent little cafés like Scout’s Honour and Oratnek. But now that Redfern is home to a cellar door for an Adelaide winery it’s time to face the truth. Redfern is a very different place to the suburb you knew in the early thousand
It’s a tricky issue because we are not fans of the erosion of our city’s working class and bohemian neighbourhoods by skyrocketing property prices, but where creative and dynamic people congregate, everyone else will follow
Which brings us back to the Cake Wines Cellar Door. After a series of popular pop-up bars that doubled as performance spaces, Cake Wines decided to put down some permanent roots in Sydney and have set up a fetching, modern wine bar inside a converted warehouse in the backstreets of Redfern.
It’s a room of brick, timber, concrete and steel, which is both aesthetically pleasing and utterly unforgiving when it comes to noise – on a packed Friday night with DJ-provided beats in the mix you’re closer to a shout than a whisper.
And when we say packed, we mean it. Thursday and Friday nights are free entry from 5pm and on our visit there’s not a free seat in the house. Saturdays there are free DJ sets at 1.30pm for a weekend warm-up, followed by ticketed gigs from 6.30pm, and on Sundays they host hourly wine tastings to get you acquainted with their core range of five Adelaide Hills wines. There’s also two from the McLaren Vale and two pricier drops from their premium Young Wine Maker Series.
But honestly, the $42 bottle of 2014 pinot noir gets the job done. It’s a light bodied number with a dark, fruity spiciness that means when the next one in the round brings back another bottle, no one complains. It’s a wine you can spend a whole evening with.
Or maybe you can’t hack an evening of tannins, in which case the gentle rosé with a sweet berry aroma is for you. It’s not the bone-dry style we’re seeing in bars all across the city of late, but it’s an easy drinking number none the less.
Although it’s touted as a cellar door, glasses start at nine bucks a pop; you can pay $70 a bottle for the really good stuff; and the food is a little pricey. But it’s undeniably an ace spot for banter and booze at the end of the working week. It’s the wine industry's answer to the rise of the brewery bar, and we like what they’re bringing to the table.
|Venue name:||Cake Wines Cellar Door|
16 Eveleigh St
|Opening hours:||Thu, Fri 5-11pm; Sat 1.30-11pm; Sun 3-10pm|
Go for the music and wine but don't expect to get food and do expect the odd rude and officious wait staff member. We tried twice to order pizza, the first time to be told the queue was so long that they were no longer taking orders and the second that the oven was broken. We had two charcuterie boards between 6 but needed something more substantial and Cake were not able to supply anything other than another charcuterie board, so we ordered in a couple of pizzas and continued being paying customers of wine and beer. When we were almost finished the pizzas a member of staff came to tell us how disrespectful it was of us to bring food in. When we pointed out that we had tried to buy pizza from them and they could not supply it, he continued to argue with us and tell us how disrespectful we were and we were asked to leave after finishing our drinks. Cake Wines, if you want repeat business you may want to look at weeding out any officious staff in favour of more flexible and customer focused people. It makes sense to not have people bring food in, when you are able to supply it. When you are unable to supply it, surely it is better for them to eat so that they remain sober and continue to buy your drinks rather than to either leave to find another venue or stay and become drunk due to lack of substantial food.