New Mexican restaurant Blue Agave opens in Norwich

Blue Agave Mexican restaurant in Tombland, Norwich. Owner Jason Coolbaugh.Picture: ANTONY KELLY

Blue Agave Mexican restaurant in Tombland, Norwich. Owner Jason Coolbaugh.Picture: ANTONY KELLY - Credit: Archant

Flavour and spice have become the letter of the law in one of Norwich's newest eateries – as a Mexican restaurant has moved onto the site of a former solicitors.

Formerly Overburys Solicitors, 3 Upper King Street is now home to Blue Agave, a Mexican Grill, which opened for business earlier this month.

The restaurant is the project of Californian Jason Coolbaugh, who has settled in the region with his wife, Sophie, and nine-year-old daughter, Hana.

Having grown up in Orange County, California, Mr Coolbaugh developed a love of Mexican cuisine from a very young age.

Mr Coolbaugh, 48, said: 'My earliest memory of cooking was making quesadillas with my sister when I was just five, so I've always loved Mexican food.

'Growing up so close to the Mexican border, the food was everywhere.'

It was only when moving to Ohio years later that he developed his passion for food, after finding his favourite meals harder to come by.

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Upon moving to London in 2003, he found a similar problem and, in 2010, opened his first restaurant.

He added: 'I live and breathe Mexican food – I have grown up eating it all my life, but I often found some flavours were missing over here.'

Mr Coolbaugh is now bringing his recipes to the Fine City, after being impressed when visiting with his family.

He said: 'When we decided to move out of London we looked at a few different places and Norwich was the one that stood out. It's a gorgeous city with great history.'

He now aims to bring an authentic Mexican feel with him, right down to the site's floor tiles and decorations.

As well as making its food in house from Mexican-sourced ingredients, the restaurant also serves beer from the Cerveceria Mexicano brewery, as well as no fewer than 49 brands of Tequila.

The venue also sells its ingredients to customers and is will be hosting some cooking classes later this year.

Do you have a story about a new food venture in the region? Contact David Hannant on