In the heart of Taunton's independent quarter, you'll find The Little Wine Shop & Social, a boutique bottle shop and quirky tapas bar loved by locals. It's owned by friends Max and Philippe, who met in the 1990s in London and between them have a breadth of hospitality experience including opening The Fat Duck with Heston Blumenthal and working under BBC’s Great British Menu judge, Oliver Peyton.
If looking to browse or buy, there's lots to see and while wine is the main focus, you'll also find beers and ciders, ports and fortified, as well as spirits and vermouth. The space has been enhanced to suit both of the venue's purposes, with small pockets of seating as well as a more open area to enjoy a main meal or lounge with a drink.
Tapas is the name of the game here and while the menu is updated fairly regularly, you can always expect a selection of charcuterie and cheeses. The current menu offers a large selection of tapas dishes including slow cooked beef daube nicoise with buttery mashed potato, alongside ham hock and cheese croquetas with Chipotle dip, as well as fresh grilled langoustines with garlic and parsley butter. There are vegan and vegetarian options such as vegetable tempura, as well as a selection of salads, tartines and the aforementioned cheeses and cured meats.
If in the mood for something sweet, treat yourself to the likes of classic summer pudding with Chantilly cream, raspberry coulis and freeze-dried raspberries, or perhaps the sticky vegan chocolate orange slice which sounds delightful.
For evening guests, there is also the option to go for a three-course meal with a curated selection of starters, mains and desserts. Here, you'll find larger plates such as oven-roasted cod loin with sun-blushed tomatoes and herb crust with rissotto and red pepper pesto, for a more filling sit-down dinner.