Libby and I checked out the new Dee Why Grand shopping centre yesterday. In a visit made remarkable by the complete incompetence of the parking attendants, we found the new centre to be, well, like any old shopping centre, but with a lot of "soon to open" shop-fronts. Yawn.
I was hoping to see how the new Dee Why Hotel stacked up, but it too looks a fair way off from pulling its first beer in anger. Maybe in a month or two, judging by the gaping black hole where I expected to find glitz, glamour, and (perhaps unreasonably) decent beer.
But, the latest addition to the Bayfield stable of bottle shops can be found in the 1st carpark. What I like about these guys is the ice bench located just behind the counters, full of single beer bottles which allow the thirsty tradie or traveller to quickly grab a cleanser without having to go to the fridge at the back. Nice idea.
The beer range was modest, to say the least. Big range of Aussie macros and low carbs, the usual imports & brewed-under-licence locals, and the occasional point of interest. If you're into Macs or Monteiths (this is Dee Why after all), then you'll be well rewarded. Belgian ales are limited to Chimays and Duvels, and the token 500mL English Ale (Spitfire, for example) are evident. The range seems to be a complete subset of that in First Choice, suggesting the same importers/wholesalers.
I did see some Knappstein, and some Kosciuszko pale ale. But other than that, if you want a wider range but in the same theme, then the First Choice at Forestville would be preferable. If you want a more eclectic range, then go to Brookvale Cellars; their support of local brewers (Akuna, Four Pines, Happy Goblin) is commendable.
Bayfield do claim to match advertised competitors' prices (in Manly Daily only); this is good, because I don't think their wine prices are that competitive. So I recommend trawling the 'Daily before heading to Bayfield.
And their malt whiskey range ? Very ordinary.... I'd go to Dan Murphy, First Choice, or Vintage Cellars before going to Bayfield.