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The entire world is coming to grips with the coronavirus pandemic in 2020, with full industries being shutdown in the space of days to try and slow the spread of the disease.

And while it’s impossible to single out who’s been hardest hit, the hospitality and entertainment sector is up there.

We’ve been sharing lists of local establishments who have shifted their energy towards pickup and/or delivery options, and wanted to share the story behind one such restaurant – the recently re-launched Heritage Wine Bar in Perth’s CBD.

Having just launched their newly refurbished venue, they like so many others were forced to shut up shop last weekend, with the CBD becoming a ghost town under new social isolating/distancing measures.

“It’s brutal and so many people are suffering but we have to recognise the seriousness of COVID-19. We know that social distancing and slowing the curve is vital. It’s tough right now for so many industries but we have to put the safety and wellbeing of our local community first and foremost,” says owner/restaurateur Edward Wolkowinski.

“The whole team was feeling so excited about what we were doing. The thought of losing everything we’ve built is crushing. Closing our doors forever without a fight was not an option for me.”

Forced to act fast, the venue has now temporarily pivoted towards becoming an online provider of gourmet food, wine and groceries, backed by a pickup and delivery service adhering to strict safety and no-contact guidelines.

Working with his core restaurant team, including Head Chef Matt Carulei and Comms Manager Amanda Cooper, they worked on a menu that provides gourmet “pop-in-the-oven meals” along with groceries like freshly-baked sourdough, fruit and vegetables, a butchers counter and of course, wine.

“Matt has come up with the entire menu and it’s awesome. Our Sommelier Pavel Ribaudo has matched the wines with the dishes and written up the tasting notes that he’d normally be sharing with diners in the restaurant. Everything is based on the same quality we aim for in the restaurant and we’re still supporting our local suppliers and producers.”

In the space of a week Wolkowinski and the team created the product line, photographed it, tested the dishes (including how they’ll go in a domestic oven) and built an online shop – one that now just needs some visitors to explore their offerings.

That online shop has just launched, so head to www.theheritageperth.com.au and treat yourself an award-worthy meal tonight, we reckon you could probably use one!

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