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With everything from sprawling vineyards to laneway bars, rooftop haunts and trendy distilleries, Melbournites are pretty lucky with their choice of places to go for a tipple or two at the weekend. So next time you’re up for a thirsty weekend in Melbourne, head to one of the top five places for weekend drinks, inspired by this weekend’s episode of Luxury Escapes: The World’s Best Holidays.

Image credit: TripAdvisor

Starward Distillery, Port Melbourne

Best for: Whisky
What to order: Single malt whisky from a red wine barrel
Tucked away in Port Melbourne’s industrial area, Starward Distillery is one of those places that you’re probably not going to just stumble upon. A quick Google of Melbourne’s best places for a whisky will probably bring this place to your attention. This huge distillery features a copper-themed bar and serves up flights of a selection of their most popular whiskies, with bottles available to purchase when you undoubtedly decide you want to take some home.

Image credit: Montalto

Montalto, Red Hill

Best for: Wine
What to order: Sparkling rosé (it tastes like strawberries and cream!)
Located just over an hour’s drive from Melbourne, Montalto is a picturesque winery that offers tastings of their popular wines (there’s even a wine vending machine in the upstairs tasting room!) and flavoured olive oils. There’s also a restaurant serving up fresh dishes using ingredients plucked from the kitchen garden, a casual outdoor pizzeria and rows of vines with artistic sculptures scattered throughout.

Image credit: Black Pearl

Black Pearl, Fitzroy

Best for: Cocktails
What to order: The Strangelove Daisy (Bulleit bourbon, pomegranate, lemon, umeshu and genepi)
Frequently named of The World’s Best Bars, Black Pearl is a dimly lit neighbourhood haunt where the cocktails are flowing and Melbourne’s coolest crowds can be found knocking back a post-work tipple or two. Expect innovative concoctions such as the Brain’s Bitter with Don Julio Blanco and apricot, and the Mix-Oh Lo-Gee with Ron Zacapa rum, Amaro, peach and clouds.

Image credit: Four Pillars

Four Pillars, Healesville

Best for: Gin
What to order: A Negroni
Pay a visit to Four Pillars’ distillery door (about an hour outside Melbourne) for walk-in tastings priced at just $10 each and refundable if you make a purchase. Enjoy a G&T served just steps away from the stills by a passionate-about-gin bartender.

Image credit: Weekend Notes

Mountain Goat Brewery, Richmond

Best for: Beer
What to order: Goat Aussie lager
If beer is your drink of choice then Mountain Goat Beer is the place to be for Friday night drinks or a relaxed Sunday session. Join a free Sunday brewery tour on Sundays at 1:30 or take a seat for on-tap beers including Goat Aussie lager, ciders and summer ales.

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