Upon first glance, it’s easy to see why Sharon Romeo of Fino Vino is Australia’s Restaurant Personality of the Year.
The veteran of industry brought home South Australia’s only award for 2022.
Beaming from ear-to-ear, Sharon is just as passionate about creating an incredible dining experience for guests as we here at Glam are passionate about her restaurants.
Fino is home to a delicious menu, an excellent wine list and a warm welcoming fitting.
Sharon, who has been awarded the prestigious Gourmet Traveller Restaurant Award for Restaurant Personality of the Year, describes her win as an honour and incredibly humbling.
“For over 30 years I have been doing what I love and that is hosting people and looking after guests so to be recognised for my part in offering a memorable dining experience is so rewarding,” said the front-of-house dynamo.
With no expectations of taking home, the award Sharon said she was taken aback by her win.
“It was wonderful and great enough just to be nominated but to win such a prestigious award among my peers …. Honestly it’s one of the biggest highlights of my life.”
But what does it mean to be Restaurant Personality of the Year?
Sharon describes the award as recognition of outstanding front of house service.
“It’s really important to me that when a customer enters one of my restaurants they feel at home. I want people to feel welcome and have our service match the quality of our food,” she said.
“At the end of the day, people come in for an experience and we deliver.”
Anyone who is fortunate enough to be served by Sharon can attest to her energetic personality, welcoming smile and knowledgeable recommendations.
As co-owner of popular eateries, Fino Vino and Fino Seppeltsfield Sharon has worked the floor to keep her busy winery restaurant humming at the same time as trying to bed in the new CBD venue.
Fino Seppeltsfield (which celebrated its 7th birthday last week) is both well established and well-loved, with its city sister-restaurant Fino Vino opened to stellar reviews and sold-out seatings most weekends.
Despite the challenges of the past 18-months Sharon remained positive and motivated by her love of hospitality, her passion for people, and her generous Italian spirit.
“You can hide in the kitchen, but the front of house, have to put on a brave face and pretend it’s all okay. I felt so much support. It was so beautiful, and that kept me going because I’m here for the customers, I love what I do, I’ve always loved it”, Sharon says.
“Like my mum, it’s in my blood. Welcoming people and looking after them. It’s very satisfying”, she continued.
Anyone who’s experienced Sharon’s highly enthused, no-nonsense service would agree that the well-earned title belongs to her. From her classic-leaning wine list to her quick-witted banter, Sharon has kept her restaurant bustling with diners through one of the trickiest times in the industry.
In an effort to combine her love of food with her vest for entertaining, Fino Vino has begun hosting once-monthly Long Table Sessions.
For just $25 pp guests are treated to an hour of hospitality from ‘Australia’s Restaurant Personality of the Year’, some of SA’s best wines and delicious accompanying snacks.
“Food brings people together,” says Sharon.
The “long table premise is to work with people who have supported us – building those relationships and including new friends.”
Sharon continued, “having opened two regional restaurants in SA you realise the importance of supporting the community and developing and nurturing relationships with farmers, growers, vignerons and of course the locals … and to now be able to share that in our city restaurant is so humbling.”
With the final Long Table Session of the year quickly selling out, Sharon urges everyone to try and get tickets to the fantastic evening.
“We are thrilled to feature Charlie O’Brien from Silent Noise Wines, for our final long table session of the year. I met Charlie at Seppeltsfields’ in 2006 when he was just eight years old, he is now a 2021 Young Gun of Wine finalist, who at just 23 years of age has managed to pick up 4 trophies at this year McLaren Vale Wine Show.”
Charlie will be pouring five amazing wines for guests to sample:
- 2021 MOFO Bianco
- 2020 Cloudy But Fine Chardonnay
- 2021 MF Grenache
- 2021 FO Shiraz
- 2021 FRO
The joyous evening will kick off on Tuesday 7th December at 6 pm.
As huge FOODIES ourselves we can guarantee a trip to Fino Vino or Fino Seppeltsfield won’t disappoint.
The Long Table Sessions located in Fino’s convivial city venue brings the restaurant regional ethos into the city in a relaxed and accessible environment, ensuring a really memorable dining experience.
“Serving refined rustic food in a really warm and welcoming space, while offering generous hospitality, is really important to Fino’s ongoing success,” explained Sharon.
“We provide authentic, genuine from the heart dining because we all know how important great service is to the overall dining experience.”
If you’re still not sold, Fino Vino secured a spot in the Age Good Food Guide for 2022, as one of only ten South Australian restaurants awarded recognition.
Congratulations to Sharon and all of this year’s Gourmet Traveller Restaurant Award winners!
Fino Vino’s final Long Table Session of 2021 kicks off on Tuesday 7th December at 6 pm at 82 Flinders St, Adelaide SA 5000.
You can purchase tickets to the event here.