With the introduction of star sommelier Liinaa Berry to the 2KW team, the rooftop bar and restaurant is solidifying its place amongst Adelaide’s best food and wine destinations.
2KW levels up with new wine program
2KW has undergone a metamorphosis in 2018.
Though the one-tonne wood oven remains at the venue’s heart, and birds-eye views of the Riverbank precinct still abound, the evolution has come in the form of a changing of the guard – first with newly installed executive chef, Trent Lymn, and again with the appointment of sommelier Liinaa Berry into the role of wine director.
This is a significant move for the venue, as it continues to solidify its reputation as a premium food and wine destination befitting of their lofty location.
Coming to the rooftop is also a significant move for Liinaa, who, in accepting the new role, leaves behind the great success she oversaw at The Crafers Hotel – the venue through which she was introduced to Adelaide’s dining public.
Joining the team in 2015, through Liinaa’s talent, the revived Hills pub was recently awarded Best Pub Restaurant Wine List in Australia, Best Wine List in South Australia, and is in the top three overall nationally, according to Australia’s Wine List of the Year Awards.
“For me, the opportunity there, when I saw that, was to basically write the biggest wine list in South Australia, that was my objective, and I wanted it to be the best in South Australia as well,” Liinaa says.
“Obviously it wasn’t easy to leave the wine room at The Crafers because I had an attachment – it was my baby.”
The opportunity at 2KW, though, is to redefine the venue’s approach to wine through a holistic wine program, featuring a curated 700-wine list (much more concise than the Crafers’ 2,000).
“There are two main parts in the list, the Classic and the Progressive. The Classic section is now loaded with more Chablis, Burgundy and Rhone, Loire Valley wines as well as Italian reds and German riesling,” Liinaa says.
“The new insert, the Progressive, includes a bunch of wonderful wines from around Australia and around the world… [and] for those who are curious and want to imbibe wines that quench the adventurous thirst, there is a selection of orange wines, skin contact whites, pet nats and wines with little or no SO2 that will definitely spark conversation.
“And even though there a lot of new and international producers, there is still an excellent representation of Australian classics. We have a great selection of back vintage wines from Henschke, Rockford, Wendouree, Yalumba, Torbreck, Cullen, Leeuwin Estate, Penfolds, Yarra Yering, Mount Mary, as well as a solid bunch of smaller producers like Ministry of Clouds, Mysterious Mr Black, Izway Wines, Rusden Wines, Honeymoon Vineyard, BK Wines, Timo Mayer, Sorrenberg and Murdoch Hill amongst many others.”
Three full-time sommeliers have also been added to 2KW’s staff, setting the tone for the venue’s style of service, and the events team plans to implement a roster of wine-focussed events with the intention of strengthening ties between the bar and local producers, and the city’s hospitality industry at large.
“I have a bunch of wine events that I want to collate within the program. Keep your eyes peeled!” Liinaa smiles.
Liinaa has already introduced annual event 15 Shades of Rosé to the venue, a showcase designed to promote 15 different rosé producers each year, and now offers a range of Somm’s Table tastings for diners wanting to dive a little deeper.
“[This] is a new service we offer for groups who want to book a wine tasting on the deck, or in the cabanas,” she says.
“There are three different prices to choose from and four tasting options, which include Classic Wines, Progressive Wines, Blind Wines, or Local wines. The tasting can also be paired with a selection of delectable canapés for an extra $45 per person.”
Sommeliers are a relatively new breed in Adelaide’s hospitality scene – or perhaps more accurately, the appreciation of sommeliers is finally gaining traction here (in a state where everyone’s distant cousin is a winemaker, people aren’t used to the concept of being told what to drink), but Liinaa’s prior achievements, and her drive to make it easier to drink well in Adelaide, show how integral a good selector is to a great food and wine experience.
“One of the best things is when I don’t even have to hand over the wine list,” Liinaa says. “When the guest leaves it to me to choose for them, that really means a lot to me. My love and loyalty to winemakers and producers is extended to them and the relationship I build with my customers turns into great friendships along the way – and that, that feeling is great!”