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Cocktails and chips? Owners of Grosvenor Fish Bar hope to serve booze too

PUBLISHED: 15:17 09 October 2020 | UPDATED: 16:36 09 October 2020

The team at the Grosvenor Fish Bar with owners Duane Dibartolomeo centre left and Christian Motta, centre, right. Pic: EDP

The team at the Grosvenor Fish Bar with owners Duane Dibartolomeo centre left and Christian Motta, centre, right. Pic: EDP

Archant

A margarita with your mushy peas? Cosmopolitan with your cod? Bosses at a renowned Norwich chippy are hoping to be serving up more than just a fish supper.

Duane Dibartolomeo, co-owner of the Grosvenor Fish Bar. Pic: EDPDuane Dibartolomeo, co-owner of the Grosvenor Fish Bar. Pic: EDP

Duane Dibartolomeo and Christian Motta, who run the Grosvenor Fish Bar, in Lower Goat Lane, have applied for a licence so that customers dining in The Bunker restaurant can enjoy a beer with their battered cod.

It’s all part of reopening their restaurant, called The Bunker because of its air raid shelter feel, which has been temporarily closed because of coronavirus restrictions.

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But after spacing out seating – now able to accommodate up to 45 people – the duo have applied to Norwich City Council for a licence to serve alcohol.

A classic Margarita could be served up at the Grosvenor Fish Bar if they get a licence. Pic: Archant libraryA classic Margarita could be served up at the Grosvenor Fish Bar if they get a licence. Pic: Archant library

But Mr Dibartolomeo stressed that this is so people can have a drink with their meal, dining in or takeway, and customers won’t be able to buy drinks only. They also plan to serve the last orders at 6.30pm, closing at 7.30pm.

They are currently redecorating The Bunker and if they are successful with gaining the licence, may employ a bartender but hope to do it themselves first.

“I love margaritas,” said Mr Dibartolomeo. “That’s pretty much the only cocktail I know how to make, if someone asks for a tequila sunrise, I’m going to have to get a book out, I will need a bartender app on my phone,” he joked.

“I think we’ll start with simple drinks like gin and tonics, definitely beer and wine. People used to ask us all the time but they haven’t been doing so much lately. We have kept the restaurant closed initially because I was frightened of a second wave of coronavirus, I didn’t want to create a problem, so we opened up for take-away and deliveries which have been so successful.

The Grosvenor Fish Bar is hoping to reopen its restaurant and get a licence to serve alcohol. Pic: EDPThe Grosvenor Fish Bar is hoping to reopen its restaurant and get a licence to serve alcohol. Pic: EDP

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“But we’ve looked at the spacing and we hope to reopen the restaurant in the next two weeks and should hear about the alcohol licence in the next month.”

Back in May, the Grosvenor Fish Bar was so busy, they had to halt orders early after receiving 400 in the first five hours. But Mr Dibartolomeo said custom had quietened across the city recently.

“Over the past few weeks, everyone has been saying how quiet the streets are, people just aren’t about, the weather has been bad but the streets are very empty, it’s eerie.”

But he said plans to sell up were definitely shelved for now. The couple had planned to move abroad with Mr Motta’s mum to warmer climes, but this is not on the cards now. “I love Norwich, we’ve been so lucky and our customers have really supported us throughout Covid.”


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