A Point of Difference Liquor

If you were a craft beer fan in Melbourne during the early days of its rise, there was a constant truism to how you bought beer. If you wanted to get your hands on a wide selection to enjoy at home, you were heading to one of a very small number of bottleshops.

It didn’t matter if the good beer was nowhere near where you lived or worked, if you wanted it, you had to plan your day, weekend (and maybe even where you chose to live) around getting to a very finite number of places in the city.

But thankfully, that’s changed. Among those who have created that change is A Point of Difference Liquor, which opened in 2016 in Mitcham. While Melbourne’s inner east had long been home to some of Australia’s leading craft bottleshops, the area beyond Burwood and Box Hill missed out before A Point of Difference – or APOD as it’s affectionally known – came along. That’s despite the area being awash with young families, plenty of who had moved back to the ‘burbs after years of enjoying the broad selection many inner-city bars and bottleshops are known for.

You might well have guessed it from the name but the store was born from a desire to do things differently by focusing on the kind of beers, spirits and wines you couldn’t get from a larger retailer.

The small store is located within walking distance from the suburb’s train station and in the heart of the Mitcham Shopping Centre. Walk in and you’ll be greeted to a multitude of beers across every beer style under the sun, with APOD always stocking what’s new and good from the country’s ever-expanding number of craft breweries and internationals too.

It means that each time you walk in, you can easily lose track of time browsing for new beers or discovering breweries you’re yet to meet. Despite its small size, the place does manage to cram in more than 800 unique beers, a collection on par with some of the best specialist bottlos around. But, of course, size isn’t everything.

Of greater importance is a dedication to continually refreshing and rotating the range so customers are always able to find something new, whether they return every month or a few times a week. Every hoppy beer you buy from APOD is not only sold cold but has been stored and transported cold too to help ensure they get to your home just as the brewer intended.

It’s the same approach when it comes to cider, wines and spirits. There’s an emphasis on small producers, whether they are Australian or international, and a focus on those brands that can’t be found in major liquor retailers. This not only provides customers with a genuine choice of products but also means there’s no need to enter into price wars with competitors.

When it comes to beer, everyone has their little idiosyncrasies: what styles we prefer over others, which hops our palates believe mix together to make the perfect IPA, what breweries are the most exciting both at home and abroad. It wasn’t always this good but today, anyone in the outer east can satisfy their own particular desires, whatever their point of difference.

NB: Below is just a taste of the breweries whose beer’s APOD stocks, with the bottleshop constantly changing things up and getting new beers from new breweries in. 

Name
A Point of Difference Liquor
Address

499 Whitehorse Road
Mitcham
VIC 3132

Phone
(03) 9874 8297
Open Hours

Mon to Wed: 11am to 7pm
Thurs to Sat: 10am to 8pm
Sunday: 10am to 6.30pm

This is a directory listing. To find out more, head here

Regularly featured brewers

2 Brothers

2 Brothers

4 Joyner St
Moorabbin
VIC 3189

3 Ravens

3 Ravens

1 Theobald Street
Thornbury
VIC 3071

4 Pines (CUB)

4 Pines (CUB)

29/43-45 East Esplanade
Manly
NSW 2095

Akasha Taproom & Brewery

Akasha Taproom & Brewery

10-12 Spencer Street
Five Dock
NSW 2046

Bad Shepherd

Bad Shepherd

386 Reserve Road
Cheltenham
VIC 3192

Banks Brewing

Banks Brewing

12 Hi-Tech Place
Seaford
VIC 3198

BentSpoke Brewing Co

BentSpoke Brewing Co

38 Mort Street
Braddon
ACT 2612

Big Shed Brewing Concern

Big Shed Brewing Concern

1154 Old Port Road
Royal Park
SA 5014

Blackman's Brewery

Blackman's Brewery

26 Bell Street
Torquay
VIC 3228

Boatrocker Brewers & Distillers

Boatrocker Brewers & Distillers

34 & 51 Macbeth Street
Braeside
VIC 3195

Bodriggy Brewing Co

Bodriggy Brewing Co

245 Johnston Street
Abbotsford
VIC 3067

Bonehead Brewing

Bonehead Brewing

86 Parsons Street Kensington
VIC 3031

Bridge Road Brewers

Bridge Road Brewers

Old Coach House
Ford Street
Beechworth VIC 3747

Burleigh Brewing Company

Burleigh Brewing Company

2 Ern Harley Drive
Burleigh Heads
QLD 4220

CoConspirators Brewing

CoConspirators Brewing

377 Victoria Street
Brunswick
VIC 3056

Dainton Brewery & Taphouse

Dainton Brewery & Taphouse

560 Frankston Dandenong Rd
Carrum Downs
VIC 3201

Deeds Brewing

Deeds Brewing

4 Paran Place
Glen Iris
VIC 3146

Feral Brewing (CCEP)

Feral Brewing (CCEP)

PO Box 3265 Bassendean
WA 6942

Grifter Brewing Company

Grifter Brewing Company

1/391 Enmore Road
Marrickville
NSW 2204

Hargreaves Hill

Hargreaves Hill

Factory 60
64-86 Beresford Road
Lilydale 3140

Hawkers Beer

Hawkers Beer

167 Henty Street
Reservoir
VIC 3073

Holgate Brewhouse

Holgate Brewhouse

79 High Street
Woodend
VIC 3442

Molly Rose Brewing

Molly Rose Brewing

279 Wellington Street
Collingwood
VIC 3066

Moo Brew

Moo Brew

76a Cove Hill Road Bridgewater
TAS 7030

Moon Dog

Moon Dog

17 Duke Street
Abbotsford
VIC 3067

Mornington Peninsula Brewery (Tribe)

Mornington Peninsula Brewery (Tribe)

Mountain Goat (CUB/Asahi)

Mountain Goat (CUB/Asahi)

80 North Street Richmond
Victoria
3121

Nail Brewing

Nail Brewing

323 Collier Road
Bassendean
WA 6054

Nomad Brewing

Nomad Brewing

5 Sydenham Road
Brookvale
NSW 2100

One Drop Brewing Co

One Drop Brewing Co

5 Erith Street
Botany
NSW 2019

Pirate Life (CUB/Asahi)

Pirate Life (CUB/Asahi)

18 Baker Street
Port Adelaide
SA 5015

Range Brewing

Range Brewing

4 Byres Street
Newstead
QLD 4006

Red Duck Brewery

Red Duck Brewery

11a Michaels Drive
Alfredton
VIC 3350

Red Hill Brewery

Red Hill Brewery

88 Shoreham Rd
Red Hill South
VIC 3937

Sailors Grave Brewing

Sailors Grave Brewing

7 Forest Road
Orbost
VIC 3888

Six String Brewing

Six String Brewing

4/330 The Entrance Road
Erina
NSW 2250

Stomping Ground Brewing Co

Stomping Ground Brewing Co

100 Gipps Street
Collingwood
VIC 3066

Two Birds Brewing (Lion/Kirin)

Two Birds Brewing (Lion/Kirin)

136 Hall Street
Spotswood
VIC 3015

Wayward Brewing Co

Wayward Brewing Co

3 Gehrig Lane
Camperdown
NSW 2050

Wolf of the Willows

Wolf of the Willows

39 De Havilland Road
Mordialloc
VIC 3195