convivial dining at
Grant Spokes and Jan Rundle share a passion for great food, great wine, travel and football
importantly they also shared a passion for
a different kind of life
Like many of us living on the Coast Jan and Grant saw more of the M1 than they did of their home town. Our proximity to Sydney means that many of us scurry onto trains or join the snake of traffic headed south for work. With the days getting shorter commuters are often leaving in darkness and coming home in darkness … It can be a tough lifestyle for a family and also comes at the expense of involvement in the community.
Hours spent carpooling each week were put to good use by Jan and Grant, plotting their escape from the grind. All sorts of plans came and went but looking closer to home gave them an idea that they thought might have legs.
The two families often came together to share good food and great wine, and conversation often turned to how they’d love a local eatery that combined these things. Somewhere with outstanding food and wine but in an informal, family-friendly setting. Somewhere that the kids were made welcome but Mum and Dad could enjoy some good food and a decent glass of wine.
Both Jan, Grant and their families have travelled the world, eating at some of the finest restaurants, enjoying simple street food or visiting local markets for amazing produce. It’s no surprise these experiences helped flesh out their plans. In many countries simple but excellent quality food and wine can be found almost everywhere. Ingredients are of premium quality and widely available, and importantly, the act of preparing and sharing a meal is an enviable ritual. Jan and Grant wholeheartedly embrace this philosophy, believing that simple food done well, using top quality produce and accompanied by great wine and company is a necessity.
The menu at BamVino changes seasonally and features many classics including pizzas and pastas. The pair’s thinking is that while there’s plenty of places offering pizza, few of them are made with care and quality produce. BamVino uses ingredients sourced from renowned producers, local and international, with the aim of bringing city quality to the Coast.
There’s also a classy array of tapas style share plates including fresh snapper ceviche and stuffed bullhorn capsicum. The four salad choices, including a tasty Panzanella, can be served as main meals with the addition of marinated chicken or slow cooked lamb. Desserts are appealingly varied with ever-popular churros with a Kahlua dipping sauce, rice pudding with rhubarb, gelato and a traditional Argentinian dessert that will have you guessing.
The meals definitely hit the mark of honest yet excellent food, with freshness and quality evident in all choices, but the thing setting BamVino apart is the extensive selection of wines available by the glass. The substantial wine list has been tasted and selected by Jan and Grant, with attention to differing palettes and tastes, and wines that over deliver on quality for the price. The majority are Australian wines, with the odd Italian drop (including a very stylish Chianti) and a selected few from France, New Zealand, South America, South Africa and Spain, including back vintages that are drinking at their peak now.
The range of wines available is constantly refined to offer varieties, vintages and styles rarely found elsewhere. Jan and Grant are passionate about customers trying a wine before they buy it. Here, the wine is definitely as important as the food.
Beer drinkers are catered for, with a good selection of boutiques brews including two from Six String Brewing Co. and some interesting international choices, as are spirit lovers with a substantial range of premium brands.
Within weeks of launching BamVino Jan and Grant saw an opportunity to utilise the neighbouring shop space and opened The Deli. A complete labour of love and extension of BamVino, the wine crate shelving has been handmade and each stocked product sourced by the pair.
The Deli is now the domain of Grant’s wife Tiffany. It’s a beautiful cosy space that literally whiffs of integrity. You’ll find everything you’d expect of a high quality European style deli. There’s an amazing selection of international cheeses, meats, breads from locals La Tartine, olives, dips, condiments, preserves, cereals, pastas, pasta sauces and so much more. Dietary restrictions are catered to with many gluten free products, including grain and gluten free bread, vegan and dairy free products. You can also pop in for an excellent cup of coffee.
The Deli can be utilised for functions hosting up to 45 people and their gourmet hampers are gaining a loyal following. They make for a thoughtful and appreciated gift and can be made to order.
There’s a nice fluidity between The Deli and the restaurant, with shoppers’ preferences informing the menu and vice versa. The Deli opens at 9 am daily and closes when the last restaurant patron leaves, allowing you to peruse the shelves while you wait for your meal or take home some of the ingredients.
A little fluidity has also led to the opening of yet a third business – BamVino Cellars at Green Point. As you might imagine, it wasn’t a huge leap from selecting wines for the restaurant, although it means a lot more sampling … So now, when you ascertain what your new favourite BamVino tipple is, you know just where you can get it by the case!
7 nights: 5pm til late
Friday and Saturday lunch from noon
7 days: 9am until till late
Phone: 02 43650064
Corner of Avoca Drive and
Bayside Drive, Green Point (under Aldi)
Ph: 02 4369 2846