Unique Food & Drink Experiences

11 August 2023

Unique Food and Drink Experiences in Norwich and Norfolk 

It’s so thrilling to experience something new. The excitement of the unknown. The anticipation of discovery. And that feeling of making memories that last. And here in Norwich, there’s an endless number of unique new adventures to find – especially if you’re a foodie!

The City of Stories is perhaps the undiscovered food capital of the country – with hundreds of fantastic restaurants and cafes, as well as a host of locally made produce. And better yet, there’s plenty of food and drink experiences available that you can get stuck into. Whether you want to discover how award-winning whisky is made, take a cheese tasting tour, create your own gin, or enjoy one of the many other unique experiences on offer.

And if you’re looking for even more fantastic places to visit for a good meal, be sure to check out our ‘Eat & Drink’ page for even more recommendations!


Gyre & Gimble  

Gyre & Gimble is an internationally recognised distillery producing award-winning gin. Spend some time in the stylish cocktail bar that’s a zero-waste venue and sample some delicious cocktails (it easily has the largest selection in the city). That’s right, every drink on the menu is curated to ensure that every bit of the ingredient is used. Incredible!

Want to get a bit more hands on? You absolutely must book a visit to the Gin Academy. Here, you’ll become a distiller for the day and be guided through developing your very own gin with a master of the craft! Once ready, your gin will be labelled, bottled, and wax sealed for you to take home! The best part? Your unique recipe is then kept on file, so it can be reproduced at any time! £75 per person for a two-hour experience with a selection of gin and tonics to enjoy throughout (though they recommend planning a little bit more time, just in case).

A bartender pours a cocktail made with gin into a tall glass.

Gyre & Gimble’s drinks menu is so big, there’s something for everyone to enjoy!

Cheryl Cade Tours 

Cheryl Cade is a beer sommelier and an Academy of Cheese member, offering up a huge range of food and drink tours in Norwich. Learn the history of some of our most loved drinks and snacks (as well as having plenty of samples – for educational reasons, of course) on one of her many tours.

We love the sound of the Beer and Cheese tour (£45pp) which consists of visits to 4 different pubs to sample delicious beer and cheese combinations, carefully considered by Cheryl. Or there’s the Gin Tour, which will see you travel through the history of Norwich and its gin, visiting five different venues, sampling at least five unique gins. Where do we sign up?! Fancy some more? There’s also other regular tours you can book onto – check out the details on the website.

A woman holds onto a tray of different drink items, while placing one down with the other hand.

Enjoy tasty food and drink tasting on a Cheryl Cade tour!

Richard Hughes Cookery School 

Want to learn some new kitchen skills so you can surprise some friends at your next dinner party? Well, at the Richard Hughes Cookery School you’re learning from the very best – so gaining some impressive skills is almost a guarantee.

Suitable for cooks of all ages and abilities, you’ll cook, learn, and laugh as you get hands-on in a stunning kitchen with a chef with four decades of experience. You’ll be given expert tuition and step-by-step instructions, and once the hard work is over, the experts will cook and serve you lunch or afternoon tea to reflect on a day of great fun and education.

Plus, you can then take the fruits of your labour home to share and enjoy! There’s plenty of courses to book onto, from ‘Gluten Free Bakes’ to ‘Classic Afternoon Tea Pastries’. Spaces are limited so we recommend booking ahead. Courses from £160 per person. 

The Shoebox Experiences

For a huge range of unique activities, The Shoebox Experiences is a great place to start. There are plenty of fascinating tours and fun ways to see the city, including the ‘Hidden Street Tour‘ showing you one of Norwich’s many former, and now underground, streets (more on that in our Unique Experiences in Norwich & Norfolk blog).

If you’ve been to the City of Stories before, you may have heard an old saying that describes Norwich as having a pub for every day of the year, and a church for every week. Well, it turns out that wasn’t just true, but it was an underestimation as of 1884! So, it’s only natural that The Shoebox Experiences have got a unique tour for the historic pubs of the city.

Join the Tavern Trail Tour, where you will see some of these gorgeous pubs while learning about Norwich from a unique perspective (£15 per person). And if you want a few more drinks to enjoy, why not join the Tipsy Tavern Trail Tour, where you’ll get an extra hour and four drinks to enjoy in these pubs (£45 per person)!

The Ribs of Beef  

The Ribs of Beef is a picturesque freehouse serving up real ales and delicious pub food. And it’s unique for its riverside location and free mooring. Hire yourself a canoe, picnic boat or stand-up paddleboard – and after a morning cruising along the river and taking in the scenery, what’s better than taking a break for some lunch and a refreshing pint. The Ribs of Beef is the perfect stop off point on a river adventure (and not just because the food and drink is so good!).

From here, you can row towards the colourful houses on Quayside and onwards to Cow Tower and Pulls Ferry. Or you can head the opposite direction which will take you to Norwich University of the Arts, the old Bullard and Sons Anchor Brewery and the Eastern Electricity Building, which has Sir Thomas More’s novel Utopia painted on it.  

An old pub sits on the lakeside connected to a bridge.

Moor up alongside The Ribs of Beef for a refreshing pint!


The English Distillery 

The English Distillery is known as England’s oldest and most prestigious whisky maker, so you can bet on a tour here, you’ll learn some interesting history (as well as having a drink or two!). There are several different tours to choose from, and a create your own whisky experience.

All tours will allow you a behind the scenes glimpse of the working distillery, a guided tasting, a voucher to spend in the shop and a small gift to take home. From £20 per person – £100 per person (discounted children’s tickets are available which do not include tasting).  

A man leans against a Whisky barrel as he gives a tour to a group.

Distillery tours at the English Distillery are a great gift for any whisky lover!

Fielding Cottage

Have you ever wondered how cheese is made? Do you fancy making your own? Everything tastes better when you’ve made it, and at Fielding Cottage, you can! Fielding Cottage has been making award-winning goats cheese for over ten years and has launched an exciting cheese-making course.

Visit the farm in the Norfolk countryside of Honingham for an immersive experience of all things cheese-making. You’ll learn the science of the process, tour the state-of-the-art factory, and get hands on to make your very own goats cheese. At the end of your course, you’ll enjoy cheese and crackers (including the spectacular Fielding Cottage cheese) and other local specialties, before taking home your own cheese creation.

Courses start around 9am and run until 3pm (approximately), holding up to 8 people. Tickets are available from £95.00 per person! See the website for more details.

Want to discover more fabulous food and drink in Norwich? Check out our Eat & Drink page, or our Restaurants in Norwich listings to get some inspiration.