• Wine glass icon
    We mostly offer a focus on local, small producer wines with a splashing of international wines.
  • Fork icon
    Modern Australian with a global influence and traditionally cooking methods.
  • Dollar icon
    Small in the 12-22. Larger in the 25-48
  • Music notes icon
    Always vinyl, playing a range of jazz, soul and world music, to suit the mood of the space on the night.
  • Folding chair icon
    We have bar/dining / courtyard seating for 70
  • Wine list icon
    Drinks menu
  • Food menu icon
    Food menu

The lowdown

Working together previously in one famed Melbourne wine bar, Gerald’s, gave the three owners of Commis a clear idea of what they wanted in their own ideal venue. Hence, they’ve deconstructed the feel and purpose of Commis so that it’s equal parts wine den, cocktail lounge, shared plate bistro, chic art gallery and chilled neighbourhood hangout.

The regular’s tip

Walk in, even if you haven’t made a booking, because front-of-house Dan Docherty vows he will always find you a space. Be aware that the food menu is everchanging, so whether it’s a different skewer or the chef’s nightly snack, a whole new taste experience awaits with each visit.

A sense of community is big at Commis, embracing the vibe of Johnston St, Collingwood to provide a spirited neighbourhood bar built around a shared love of wine, food, art and warm hospitality.

The trio of owners hold key roles in shaping and steering this enterprise – Daniel Docherty is wine buyer and runs the front of house experience, Gabriel de Melo Friere is head chef and Adina Weinstein Melder runs the business, marketing, events, marketing and art exhibitions in the gallery space. This experienced trio first met and worked together at Gerald’s Bar in Carlton, and realising that they shared common values and complimentary skills, they shaped an idea for their own bar, which has become Commis.

The extensive drinks card focuses on wines from local, small producers, along with a splash of international wine. “We offer our list in a traditional format, but also on the flip-side there’s an expressionist format which is arranged by mood instead of varietal – just for a bit of tongue-in-cheek fun,” explains Docherty, pointing to Slap Me in the Face and Make Me Feel Something to categorise intense wines.

The focus on wine producers with ethical farming practices and sustainability also extends into the kitchen offerings, with some of the produce sourced from both Adina’s and Gabriel’s gardens. “We encourage people to share plates and offer a range of snacks, smaller and larger plates, but we don’t have a specific style. The closest would be modern Australian with a global influence and traditionally cooking methods.” This translates to such dishes as venison osso buco, kangaroo tail croquettes, or cotechino risotto with smoked carrots, but pay close attention, because the fare keeps changing. It’s just like the appearance of this bar, because it’s also an art space that presents a fluid selection of both local and international artists – with works by Pip Sibley, Charles Becker, Joan Miro, Salvadore Dali, Rudolf Bauer, Claude Lazar and Jean Paul Gaugy currently hanging on the walls.

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