A new Japanese bar to bring the taste of Tokyo to Norwich

Published:
18:09 May 19, 2022



The owner of a new Japanese bar and restaurant, which will open next month, said he wanted to bring food from around the world back to Norwich.

Derek Hardy, who already owns Spanish restaurant Don Txoko, in St Benedicts Street, is aiming to open Fire Izakaya in White Horse Street on the former site of the White Horse Café.

Mr Hardy aims to make the new bar ‘reminiscent of Tokyo’, its name coming from the food it will serve, which will mainly be cooked over coals and Japanese izakaya, the national equivalent of the pub British.


17A White Lion Street, where the new restaurant will open.
– Credit: Casey Cooper-Fiske

Izakayas serve food in the style of Spanish tapas with drinks such as traditional sake.

Traditional dishes on the menu include Hiyayakko, a dish made with chilled tofu and toppings, and Yakitori, a chicken skewer.

Fire Izakaya will aim to combine traditional dishes with fusion dishes with Western meals.

Mr Hardy said: “It’s a bar and restaurant with lots of snacks and we called it the fire because the way most of our food will be cooked.


Derek Hardy, who will open Fire Izakaya next month.

Derek Hardy, who will open Fire Izakaya next month.
– Credit: Derek Hardy

“I’ve been lucky enough to have traveled the world and tasted great restaurants and street food and now we want to bring it back to Norwich like we did with Don Txoko and Spanish cuisine.”

The restaurant will hold a number of events to celebrate its launch once it opens, but Mr Hardy is tight-lipped about what’s in store.

He added: “I don’t really want to give away a lot, we want to keep it a surprise and give people a reason to come visit us.”

It comes after the restaurant applied for a liquor license with Norwich City Council on May 9.

If approved, the restaurant plans to open from 12 p.m. to 1 a.m. Monday through Sunday and hopes to serve alcohol from 12 p.m. to 12 a.m.

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