Everything you need to know about Frome's exciting new opening
by Jess Carter
13 March 2019
Frome has bagged itself a cool new wine shop, bar and restaurant in the form of Stony Street House
From co-founder of the Beckford Bottle Shop Kent Barker, Stony Street House is a wine merchant, bar and restaurant all rolled into one. It launched in mid-February, following a dramatic renovation of the two-storey, glass-fronted building that used to house Sam’s Kitchen.
On the ground floor is the chilled out bar and wine shop, where plants and orb-like pendant lights are suspended overhead, and banquette seating and bevelled metro tiles in the open kitchen echo the foliage's lush green colour. Upstairs is the atmospheric restaurant and lounge, with floor-to-ceiling windows, rustic wooden furniture and tables laid with polished glasses.
There is an impressive collection of wines here which, having been curated with a focus on natural and sustainable production methods, showcases many small-scale producers. The 350-odd bottles can be taken away or drank on the premises, with retail prices beginning at £6.50. (If you choose to cosy up here with a bottle on a Monday, there’s no corkage charge either. Result.)
The wine offering extends beyond what's displayed on the antique-style floor-to-ceiling shelves, though. There are 10 wines on tap too, not only promising a broad variety to drink by the glass (and to fill up reusable bottles with) but also reflecting the business’ focus on sustainability. The team, who are in communication with the Sustainable Restaurant Association, employ no single-use plastic and are aiming to achieve zero food waste, as well as keeping glass packaging to a minimum.
Food-wise, there's a selection of simple, well-thought-out dishes that come in small or full size, as well as sharing boards and sourdough pizza (brunch is on the go at weekends as well.) Slow-cooked ragu with tagliatelle (£8/£12.50) and prawns with chilli, ginger, garlic and lemon mayonnaise (£9.50) caught our eye, but in the end we found ourselves tucking into a salad of roast butternut squash, prosciutto, rocket and ricotta (£6.50/£9). A muddle of contrasts, the sweet caramelised squash partnered with the salty prosciutto deliciously, while the leave’s peppery punch was cooled by the mild, creamy cheese. Another plate saw multi-coloured heritage tomatoes arranged around a ball of milky burrata and drizzled with pumpkin seed pesto (£9.50).
Pizzas are cooked in the specialist wood-fired oven, and our ’nduja, kale and charred red pepper number (£13.50) had a suitably bubbly crust and well-balanced toppings – sweet red onion being the ideal counter to the spicy meat.
Dessert was sticky toffee pudding (£6). Draped in a generous amount of toffee sauce, which formed a deep pool in the plate, it was decadent but not too heavy, and came with velvety vanilla ice cream.
This exciting opening has made great use of the large space, which is looking sharp and inviting, and gives us one more reason to visit this picturesque market town.