Remaining at the forefront of some of the most talked-about new openings in town (see Ooh-Fa and Famous Eddy) Dominion Road is drawing us down its lively, food-filled stretch again this week, with the opening of Gray’s — a charming new spot that everyone should visit.
Located across the road from Cazador, Gray’s Wine Bar boasts a refined, understated frontage that gives way to a cosy, light-filled interior. Officially opened last week (after a couple of covid-related delays) this cute new space is a coffee-shop-wine-bar hybrid, with the welcome addition of a small vintage and artisan-goods shop, designed to be perused while you pick at your pain au chocolat.
It seems like the kind of space that would come together after years of thought and planning, and yet, according to its owners Daniel Nisbet and Grayson Dauphin, Gray’s was started on a whim. When the friends saw a space for lease, they initially thought, ‘someone better put a wine bar there’, before the thought process shifted to, ‘why not us?’
Some lease politics later, the duo was finally given the space of their dreams — 771 Dominion Road — and while they wait for their liquor licence to come through, they have created a space that serves multiple purposes, which actually gives Gray’s its point of difference. “We are not seeking to be one thing,” Nisbet reflects. “Hopefully, this means that no one thing is our ‘tent pole’, so we are freer to explore all the interesting parts of running a space. We can connect with lots of different people, like our sellers, which helps extend our reach, and ultimately create a space full of cool things and people we can be proud of.”
And that is the epitome of Gray’s offering. Rich Coffee Roasters coffee and Messy Kitchen Bakes goods by day and soon, beautiful wines by night. The curation of shoppable goods is available at any time. So while we wait for the outpost to open its after-dark offering, it is a gorgeous daytime venue in which we will happily post up for our daily coffee and a tasty baked treat (or two). We should expect any future evolutions of Gray’s Wine Bar to happen just as organically as its inception, be that live music in the basement or an expansion of the retail element — we’re only too eager to see what the future holds.
Tuesday — Friday, 7.30am until 3pm
Saturday — Sunday 8am until 3pm
Gray's Wine Bar
771 Dominion Road,
Mount Eden, Auckland