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Innocent Bystander Takes Over Brisbane’s Babylon

Renowned Yarra Valley winery Innocent Bystander is bringing their one-of-a-kind wine experience to Brisbane at a pop-up urban cellar door at Brisbane’s riverside restaurant Babylon from March 7 to 20.

pic: Marcus Ravik

Until March 20th, Yarra Valley’s renowned winery Innocent Bystander is transforming Babylon, Brisbane’s best riverside venue, into a vibrant pop-up cellar door. The wine is delightful, the views stunning, and with delicious plates from the Babylon kitchen, this is much more than the usual tasting experience.

Sample Innocent Bystander’s award-winning range at their pop-up riverside tasting bar – complete with a DJ for an afternoon or night of fine wine and food.

Innocent Bystander This Magnificent Life
Image: Tim Bond

Innocent Bystander was born in the early ‘oughts and has become the go-to Yarra Valley winery for quality wine and all with a healthy disregard for convention. They do things a little differently at Innocent Bystander while making seriously delicious wine.

Andrew ‘Harry’ Harrison took us through the wine selection and told us a little more of the Innocent Bystander story.

Long Lunches with a View … and wine

The highlight of this pop-up is the series of long lunches. Over two hours you can leisurely graze the set menu paired with Innocent Bystander’s finest wines. With the Story Bridge backdrop, there’s no better way to spend a Sunday with a glass of something cold at Babylon’s Garden

This Magnificent Life
Image: Tim Bond

Sunday Long Lunches begin with a mezze selection of hummus, macadamia dukkah, olive oil, leblebi, and a pop of wild, floral colour. There’s also taramasalata finished with olive oil, dill, and salmon roe. Enjoy the dips with house-made bread and special za’atar spiced butter. But the pan-fried halloumi stars—warm with local honey, fig jam, and blackberries. It’s a perfect match for both the Innocent Bystander Prosecco and Pinot Gris.

Somehow, we managed to fit in their Rosé as well. From 100% Yarra Valley Pinot Noir. It’s a blush of pink that’s perfect at sundown or, in our case, midday!

Fattoush and Red

Next up is one of the finest salads that TML has been lucky enough to share in a while. Fattoush, radish, tomato, crisped strips of pita bread, dukes, melon, and parsley are a knockout with the Innocent Bystander Rose. We also loved the excellently spiced fried cauliflower, ras el hanout, lemon, black tahini, almond, and parsley, and shish tawook or wood-fired chicken skewers with a subtly spiced bulgar wheat kisir, tomato, and yoghurt.

Innocent Bystander Babylon This Magnificent Life
Image: Tim Bond

We moved to the reds – both lightly chilled for a hot, humid Brisbane day, and both were exceptional. A Gamay, Pinot Noir, with 55% King Valley Gamay and 45% Yarra Valley Pinot Noir. The juicy plum of the Gamay blended expertly with one of the finest Pinot Noirs in the Valley. The wine was briefly matured to retain its bright, fresh flavours, unfined with minimal filtration.

The Nero D’avola didn’t disappoint—it’s a vibrant red colour and fabulous with Middle Eastern flavours. And it’s vegan-friendly.

Harry’s thoughts on the Nero D’Avola, “…it comes from vineyards at the warmer Swan Hill. There’s no oak influence, and when it arrives at the winery, it does two days of cold soaking with the juice remaining in contact with the skins. As the fermentation process begins it has another four days with skins before going into the tank.

Innocent Bystander This Magnificent Life
Image: Tim Bond

Select from three convenient Long Lunch sitting times at 11 am, 1 pm, or 3 pm.

Beyond the Lunches

The Babylon/Innocent Bystander pop-up menu features recommended pairings with Innocent Bystander wines. Try their Naturally Innocent Field Blend with a mezze platter, or opt for a Nero d’Avola alongside the restaurant’s famous Adana kebab. If you prefer a guided tasting, Harry’s expert knowledge can provide 50ml wine flights.

Innocent Bystander Babylon This Magnificent Life
Image: Tim Bond

“We want to create experiences that go beyond the traditional,” says Innocent Bystander Brand Manager Andrew Dix. “It’s about celebrating wine while embracing a more playful and accessible approach.”

“This is a perfect partnership,” says venue manager Angelika Golebiowska. Our delicious food paired with Innocent Bystander’s fantastic wines – it’s a recipe for a truly special experience.”

Don’t miss out Brisbane. This pop-up is your chance to taste amazing wines and savour incredible food, all with river views. Innocent Bystander

Tasting Bar at Babylon Gardens times:
Mon-Wed: 3 pm-8 pm
Thur-Sun: noon-9 pm

Babylon – 145 Eagle Street, Brisbane. Phone number: 0731 866 655.

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Liz Bond

Liz Bond comes from a PR background and loves fine wine, great food and rewarding travel - all the magnificent things in life. She prides herself in meeting famous celebrities at baggage carousels.

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We acknowledge the Turrbal people, as well as the Gadigal people of the Eora Nation, as the Traditional Owners of the land on which we live and work. We respectfully recognise Elders, past, present, and emerging, and that Indigenous Sovereignty was never ceded.

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