Willy’s Wine Shop will offer a selection of ‘eclectic’ wines in King William Road
Lockwood General co-founder and executive chef Adam Robinson is launching a wine bar and bottle shop on King William Road, aiming to offer an “eclectic” wine selection and small plate menu with appeal intergenerational.
Just 12 months after opening the Burnside Lockwood General cafe, chef Adam Robinson is working on his second location – a wine bar and bottle shop on King William Road.
Adam is a local from Hyde Park and felt the need for a decent wine bar along the main shopping street and restaurants in the suburb, King William Road.
“Because I’m a local, I know there’s nowhere on this street that I can just walk down and drink a wine,” Adam said. CityMag.
The leader’s solution to this problem is Willy’s Wine Shopwhich will open at the northern end of King William Road, in the space formerly known as Plant B Life.
“I want Willy’s Wine Shop to be just an extension of my house,” says Adam. “It feels like a really laid back atmosphere, somewhere where you can have one drink if you want, or you can sit down and have three bottles if you want.”
The wine list will be “eclectic,” says Adam, with the aim of accommodating a diverse demographic, from young and hipsters to older and more traditional minds.
“We’ve done it so well at Lockwood…that space can also have a grandma with her daughter and granddaughter, and everyone feels comfortable there,” Adam says.
“I want a space sophisticated enough for my mom to feel comfortable, but somewhere me and my friends would also like to drink.”
There will also be food. Once the wine offering is locked, Adam will create a complementary small plate offering, but the intention is not to distract from the alcohol.
“I’m going to make a huge cheese cellar that has an incredible selection of cheeses, and you come and say, ‘I want 50 grams of thatand 100 grams of that‘, and we’ll break some bread for you and bring it to the table,” Adam says.
“I want to make very nice little plates of smoked fish. Just little things that would go together well, even before dinner.
“And if anyone wants [more] food, I’ll say, ‘Walk down the street. There are some of Adelaide’s best restaurants just down the street’.
Adam partnered with Jess and Darren Packer for this venture, who own nature provider, nature life and Nettle & Knead at Malvern. They initially approached Adam with the idea of opening another cafe, but the chef had a night out concept in mind.
This is partly so as not to compete with his existing businesses or those of the Packers, but also because night trading was originally part of the Lockwood General concept.
“As proud of what I’ve done at Lockwood as I am, it feels a bit unfinished, because the original dream was to do the night trade, and that’s just not achievable in the foreseeable future,” says Adam.
The Burnside site, which is in a very residential area on the corner of High Street and Lockwood Road, is a tough proposition for night trading due to its location. King William Street, on the other hand, is primed for additional foot traffic in the PM.
“I actually believe it’s probably one of the most unused streets in the country — and especially after spending millions on the renovations they’ve done here,” Adam says.
“I really hope that after dinner or before dinner, people will come and have a wine and join us, then walk down the street, then see the local clothing stores that are here, see the hairdressers and activate the street in this way.”
Willy’s Wine Shop branding comes from Studio Majaa mother-daughter team of Mo and Lulu Hardy, who recently provided branded assets for Fishbank and the Cremorne Hotel.
The place name is do not a reference to the Willi Wine Bar in France, says Adam, and is only a “reference to the street”.
“I found that after naming it, though,” he says. “And I like the art, because they also sell art there. It was a complete coincidence, actually.
The interior design of the bar and bottle shop will be a joint project between Adam and Jess.
Adam has tapped Courtney Price, formerly of Fugazzi, as manager of Willy’s Wine Shop, and he hopes the business will be up and running “in June.”
The key to its success, he says, will be “high vibrations” (according to the Branding) Willy’s Wine Shop provides.
“We need to build relationships in this neighborhood,” Adam says. “A lot of these people have wine cellars at home. They have to have a reason to come and drink our wine, and it won’t be the wine itself, it will be the atmosphere we provide and the service we provide.
Willy’s Wine Shop will trade from noon until late Thursday through Sunday. Follow Willy’s journey to openness by connecting with the company on instagram.