THE owner of Tully’s Corner Produce Store on the Moorooduc Highway, Moorooduc, was not a happy man when he left the council chamber in Rosebud on Monday last week.
Frank Brancatisano wanted the council to approve his application to sell in his store bottled wine produced by three nearby wineries – Barmah Park Vineyard and Stumpy Gully Vineyard in Moorooduc, and Massoni Vineyard in Mt Eliza.
He’d spent a motza on reports from town planner Ratio Consultants and was confident that green wedge zone changes made by Coalition planning minister Matthew Guy, before the Napthine government was rolled by Labor, would allow packaged wine sales – so-called “primary produce”.
Shire planner James Bryan had recommended the application be approved but when the vote came, it was 6-3 against.
Mr Bryan’s report to councillors stated Tully’s had a permit for retail sales and “primary produce sales” issued in 2007 but this did not include alcohol or “non-food” products.
Now Tully’s wanted to use a corner of its building to “sell wine sourced from vines from adjacent land” during its normal opening hours (9am-6pm Monday-Saturday and 10am-6pm on Sunday).
Just one objection was received by the shire. A Mt Eliza resident stated that the sale of alcoholic products in the green wedge zone was usually in the form of a “cellar door” for wine produced on a property.
“This application equates to a bottle shop and is prohibited in the green wedge. The sale of locally produced alcoholic products as a means of enhancing the peninsula tourism experience is better conducted from cellar doors.
“The application confuses green wedge zone cellar door-type operations with the traditional bottle shop.”
Mornington Peninsula Vignerons Association supported the Tully’s application as did several winemakers.
Mr Bryan said green wedge zone changes made by Mr Guy meant “sale of wine produced from grapes grown on ‘adjacent land’ is now considered to be primary produce sales”.
“The sale of wine is to be limited to wines produced from grapes grown within a 3 kilometre radius of [Tully’s]”.
The council refused the application, stating “the sale of liquor from a retail premises fails to comply with the purpose and intent of” green wedge zone rules, and it would “result in an intensification of a retail use, which is prohibited in the green wedge”.
• Mr Brancatisano won approval from the council earlier this year to open a 200 square metre bottle shop at Moorooduc Coolstores, just 1.4km from Tully’s.