The Last Wine Bar

Not The Last – The Last Wine Bar

The last Wine bar had a little bit of trouble a while back, a closure was on the line after 29 years but luckily 4 friends got together to take it over, all of which were fans and regulars wanting to keep its essence. The building originally was a shoe factory and still stands proud in Victorian grandeur on the corner of George Street.

The Brasserie (left restaurant section) has taken on a new look and beautiful it is too with comfy seating, lounge worthy chairs and bright art adorning the walls. 

The Last is split in to 2 restaurants, the one we all know and love to the right, a cosy area with dim lights and moody reds, always popular with diners. But now it has a spunkily fresh brasserie side which by day is a great place for coffee, cake or smaller lunch time eats. With its tables spilling out on to the street it’s a great place for morning coffee while you people watch.

The Last Wine Bar offers fine dining in a relaxed setting with relaxed setting prices but the dishes use top local and seasonal ingredients, which are lovingly and skilfully transformed in to amazing bites. I would say when your choosing a good recommended restaurant in Norwich The Last Wine bar should be up there, with an amazing wine menu to boot. I believe it will deliver on every level – that’s why it has a loyal following and hopefully newbies like me will frequent it too. (I’m back for the crab donut alone, let alone the grills and thrice fried chips)

We (me and him) were lucky enough to be invited to the launch party. I was talking to the girls from Feast Norfolk Magazine along with him from the telly when I realised I wasn’t getting many canapes – – 

You see the best place for canapes is to stand as close as you can get to the kitchen (without being removed!), which happens to be at the top of the stairs. The kitchen in ‘The Last’ is in the basement so food can go up to both sides. Because both sides are bisected by an alley.

It was a good move, we bumped in to Mr Longwater who did a good deal on the Bawburgh Village Kitchen, I designed. He’s such a regular he was booked in later that night for dinner. He was telling me about their Chateaubriand night with a bottle of ‘Gevrey Chambertin on Wednesdays for £95 for two. He explained that the wine alone can cost over £60. Certainly, something special and something no one else is doing in Norwich. 

Of course, being called the last wine Bar, they would have to have a mighty fine wine menu and they certainly do – you’ll find over 50 listed on their website.

Anyway, out came the tastiest and stickiest pork belly skewers, a divine truffle smelling mac and cheese cube, a soft fragrant salt cod croquette with lovely black garlic puree, a spiced celeriac and shitake rosemary spiked number plus Brancaster oysters with dill & seabuckthorn (dill with oysters, who knew – so good).

And if that wasn’t enough we were then treated to Sable biscuits with the smoothest richest of all chocolate ganache’s – – I had 3 or was it 4?

I had a sneak peek at their menus – the brasserie offers a light lunch small palates menu from 12 – 3pm – including Padron peppers, Grilled Halloumi and those Crab Donuts – they’ve been recommended by the Fry Up Inspector. Just the very name blows my mind and if I don’t get back soon to try them I’m not worthy of the foodie title. And if you want providence – go for the Courgette Flower stuffed with Norfolk white lady goats cheese with truffle honey (yes, I said truffle honey). Plus, you can order a Cheese or Charcuterie board.

Then for dinner from 6pm you can get amazingly sounding dishes like Norfolk Chicken, with truffle potatoes, pressed leg, broad beans, artichoke and chicken butter sauce – just imagine the smell of the truffle and the taste of chicken butter –  I need to know how that maestro does that – – is it chicken skin flavoured?

Then for dessert you could go for the chocolate Bar with miso caramel, pistachios, raspberry’s and sorbet.

(I have to say I’m in torture writing this – – I need a bib!)

But of course, if that doesn’t tempt (what’s wrong with you!) – then there is plenty more to delight. 

So, it opens from 9am for coffee and pastries until late. For me it’s another place I can go for a lovely cuppa tea after a little stole around the city, while my hubby orders a rich red (wine of course) and then convinces me to share a cheese board.

Then there’s the specials like the previously mentioned double steak night with that very expensive wine at a great package price.

But they also do a Norfolk Supper – offering a five-course menu featuring only the freshest local ingredients. 

Private Hire – they’ve got that too by way of their cellar restaurant space or you could even hire out the brasserie like Mr Longwater does for his Christmas party (can I come, what do you mean men only!).

I was talking to two of the owners and they were telling me of all the amazing things they’ve got planned – exciting times ahead. 



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By Zena Leech-Calton ©

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