Inspired by the New York meatball shop, The Meatball and Wine Bar –located in Flinders Lane precinct in the heart of Melbourne’s CBD- has been shortlisted for the 2013 Eat-Drink-Design Awards.

The project, designed by Australian interior design studio -Eades and Bergman- featuring an industrial interior which fully complements the bar’s menu of rustic Italian food, was announced in the shortlist for the 2013 Eat-Drink-Design Awards, within a total of 81 entries running across six categories.

The Eat-Drink-Design Awards aim to support innovation and excellence in the design of hospitality premises from small to large scales, including a wide range of restaurants and bars, based on the belief that “while signature dishes, perfectly pitched drinks and impeccable service are an integral part of the eating and drinking experience, a venue’s interior is an equally important ingredient.”

Eades and Bergman received the commission for The Meatball and Wine Bar project immediately after they returned from a trip around New York City, where they learned about the traditional meat shops and famous delis.

The influence of the New York trends in this project is reflected in the exposed brick interior walls and the rippled black ceramic tiles on the bar’s underside, together with stained timber floors and steel light fittings and stools, seeking to get an aged look.

Meatball and Wine Bar

The exposed brick interior walls and the rippled black ceramic tiles on the underside of the bar.

“We didn’t want it to look new and shiny,” Bergman said. “Instead, the dull lustre of the copper bar and the distressed mirrored wall add patina, and help to infuse the interior with a brooding, masculine edge. Metallic finishes, too, have tarnish and grit to them in order to avoid appearing too polished.”

The bar owner -film and TV producer Matteo Bruno- also brought some very particular ideas about interior aesthetics and the ways certain areas can be ‘dressed’ resembling a film set.

“The lighting had to be great, and he had to have a meat display cabinet,” Eades explained. To meet these requests from the client, Eades and Bergman worked in collaboration with industrial designer Paul Grummisch. The result was the unique pendant lights system featuring long, slimline steel cages above bare bulbs suspended along the walls and above the bar.

The wall that separates the kitchen from the dining area was clad in mirrored panels -that have been treated to have a smudgy look- extending the space and adding certain glamour to the interior.

Meatball and Wine Bar

The arched niches founded in the brick walls.

The meat cabinet was also designed and built by Grummisch. “Taking pride of place along the mirrored wall, it’s become something of a showpiece.”

“Working with the amazing industrial designer Paul Grummisch across the design of the wine bar, we were lucky enough to roll out the full interior fit out producing custom designed communal tables, chairs and lights as well as stools by Daniel Barbera,” Eades and Bergman said.

In addition to the lighting designs, Grummisch used recycled 25-year-old timber for the large communal tables, while Australian furniture designer Daniel Barbera created the custom-designed bar stools, featuring a flat, sturdy base and a slender steel stem that branches out at the seat.

Two brick walls run the length of the interior in contrast to the sheen of the ceramic tiles, copper and marble in the bar area. During the construction stage, as the layers of plaster were peeled back, the architectural character of the space was slowly revealed.

Meatball and Wine Bar

The pendant lights system featuring long, slimline steel cages above a bare bulb suspended along the walls and above the bar.

“Until the plaster was taken off, we didn’t know about that beautiful detail,” Bergman said talking about the arched niches founded in the brick walls.

The Meatball and Wine Bar has been shortlisted along 23 more projects in the “Best Restaurant Design” category. The winners will be presented during an awards announcement celebration in Melbourne in November.