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New restaurant opens in place of Norwich's Thai on the River

PUBLISHED: 08:50 26 June 2018 | UPDATED: 09:12 27 June 2018

Business partners, from left, Giuliano Rossi, Arianna Fiorentini, and Thomas Wilson, in their new venture, The Vagabond pasta house and cafe, in the old Thai restaurant river boat near Norwich Railway Station. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

Business partners, from left, Giuliano Rossi, Arianna Fiorentini, and Thomas Wilson, in their new venture, The Vagabond pasta house and cafe, in the old Thai restaurant river boat near Norwich Railway Station. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

Copyright: Archant 2018

A new restaurant is to open in place of Norwich's well-known Thai on the River restaurant.

Arianna Fiorentini making a coffee at the temporary cafe bar at the The Vagabond pasta house and cafe, in the old Thai restaurant river boat near Norwich Railway Station. Picture: DENISE BRADLEYArianna Fiorentini making a coffee at the temporary cafe bar at the The Vagabond pasta house and cafe, in the old Thai restaurant river boat near Norwich Railway Station. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

Norwich-born Giuliano Rossi, 28, and his partner Arianna Fiorentini, 22, are renting out the river boat, which from today becomes The Vagabond.

Mr Rossi and his partner used to own G’s Coffee Spot in London Street, a popular location with buskers. It was here they met now business partner Thomas Wilson, 24, also from Norwich.

In December last year the coffee machine at G’s Coffee Spot broke and the pair decided they would like a change in lifestyle.

Mr Rossi said he and his partner would cycle past the floating restaurant most evenings while working for Deliveroo.

The old Thai restaurant river boat near Norwich Railway Station which is opening as The Vagabond pasta house and cafe. Picture: DENISE BRADLEYThe old Thai restaurant river boat near Norwich Railway Station which is opening as The Vagabond pasta house and cafe. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

He asked the owner if the pair could rent the boat, to which he agreed.

Mr Rossi is now opening a restaurant with the equipment that was left in the boat, with plans to upgrade over time, renovating and repairing everything that needs attention.

Mr Rossi said he and his team plan to open a “café by day, pasta house by night” restaurant and that they are toying with the idea of doing an all-you-can-eat fresh egg pasta menu.

In the meantime, The Vagabond is serving take-away coffee.

The old Thai restaurant river boat near Norwich Railway Station which is opening as The Vagabond pasta house and cafe. Picture: DENISE BRADLEYThe old Thai restaurant river boat near Norwich Railway Station which is opening as The Vagabond pasta house and cafe. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

The new restaurant owner said: “I take cooking back to basics, I always praise the ingredients I use for providing the flavour of the dish as opposed to smothering everything in sweet, sticky sauce.

“I think this is something that is missing in Norwich and it fits in nicely with the resurgence of fresh food restaurants, farm to fork and the likes.

“We will eventually end up producing up to 65pc of everything we use in our kitchen ourselves, from fresh Basil to cured Pancetta.”

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