Since opening as a wine store in Melbourne’s Punt Road more than a decade ago, Blackhearts & Sparrows has become a famous name for those looking for high quality beverages. Today there’s around a dozen in Melbourne, one in Canberra and, as of May 2019, the family-run bottleshop (and now deli) group extended their suite of across the Bass Strait and into Tasmania.
The Hobart store neatly nestles amid the various drinking destinations in the city’s northern artery Elizabeth Street, which itself is becoming a golden road of quality booze. Shambles Brewery and T-Bone Brewing have brought local beer to the street while quality cafés, bars and restaurants have all vastly improved the drinking and dining scene of the strip. Then there's longstanding craft beer favourite The Winston, found about a punt of a footy away from the Blackhearts store.
Like all its siblings that have sprung up over the years, the North Hobart store maintains the ethos of the original. Largely that’s about keeping their shelves filled with wines, beers and spirits that are exciting and which range from the highly affordable to the rare, expensive and esoteric.
They also stick closely to their belief in keeping even the most unique drinks as accessible as possible thanks to the dedication and knowledge of the staff.
As Corey Warner, manager of the North Hobart store, puts it: “We only stock products we’re passionate about.”
Like other iterations of Blackhearts & Sparrows, the Hobart store mixes a focus on local, up-and-coming producers – which, with Tassie’s ever-growing booze bounty, is plentiful – with beer and wine from all around the world.
Blackhearts & Sparrows is also well known for its tasting events; in North Hobart, this has included showcasing local brewer and cider mager Two Metre Tall as well as enticing the crew from Wildflower down from Sydney.
In short, if you know what to expect from Blackhearts & Sparrows, you won't be disappointed; if this is your first experience of them, expect to be impressed.