Eat out with a touch of Mongolian style

From traditional pub grub to five-course meals in grand country hotels, the Norfolk foodie scene is one with a big reputation and a top-class rating.With two Michelin star restaurants and a host of other eateries winning culinary accolades, Norfolk offers a diverse range of cuisine.

From traditional pub grub to five-course meals in grand country hotels, the Norfolk foodie scene is one with a big reputation and a top-class rating.

With two Michelin star restaurants and a host of other eateries winning culinary accolades, Norfolk offers a diverse range of cuisine.

And now a new family-run business is taking them all on - with a yurt.

Using a modern version of the traditional Mongolian yurt, Ollie Trezise and his family are soon to open a restaurant in the grounds of Drove Orchards farm shop at Thornham, with food served up just a stone's throw from where it is grown.


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Mr Trezise, 24, said the unique restaurant would offer simple dishes using quality ingredients and be healthy competition for the “same-old, same-old” fancier restaurants associated with this stretch of coastline.

“If you drive along the coast they're all doing something fairly similar. Given the current climate, not everyone can spend �50 a head,” said Mr Trezise.

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“We will offer simple homemade food, no microwaves, which people can enjoy that's not quite as fancy as what's going on around us. We want to offer something different that will blow away the cobwebs of a same-old, same-old north Norfolk foodie scene.”

The yurt will provide seating for about 50 people and it is expected that the main meals will cost no more than �10, with the menu dictated by seasonal produce.

Mr Trezise, from North Walsham, said he believed it was the only yurt in the country used as a restaurant.

The modern version of the yurt, traditionally used by nomads and made of wood, felt and skins, was put up in just a day by a company from the Lake District.

“In the daytime it will be quite bright but in the evening there will be a more subtle mood and ambience,” said Mr Trezise.

“It will be really cosy with a wood burner in the centre of the yurt, with an area to gather round. There will be really nice chunky pine tables from a local reclamation yard.”

It will be a real family concern. He has set up the restaurant with his mother, stepfather, sister and partner and they are currently getting the yurt ready for the launch weekend on June 6. It will be open for customers the following week.

This is the first time the family have worked together but Mr Trezise has experience in catering, including working for Hotel du Vin, Brasted's in Framingham Pigot and as general manager of St Giles House, in Norwich.

His stepfather, Paul Sutherland, also worked in catering before retraining to become an electrician when he moved to Norfolk, and his sister Sadie, 21, also worked at St Giles House.

As well as the yurt, the family are also opening a deli in North Walsham next week, managed by Sadie.

Mr Trezise's mother, Rebecca Sutherland, has also helped set up the business but will take more of a back seat when it opens.

She said the idea to open the restaurant at Drove Orchards came after a chance meeting with the owner, Andrew Jamieson, who said he would like a restaurant on the site providing a ready market for his produce. “He wants the same things that we do and we're hoping this will be a long-term relationship,” said Mrs Sutherland.

Mr Sutherland, who is installing the electrics and plumbing at the yurt, said: “It's going to be very authentic, not too fancy, very wholesome, with a deli counter for people to have deli boards.

“Most people are looking for value for money these days and we hope that it will be something different for people to come to.”

Contact The Yurt Restaurant at Drove Orchards, Thornham, on 07872 393570.

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