Park Chu-Young scored a delightful winner for Arsenal, who booked their place in the last eight of the Carling Cup at the expense of Bolton.
The visitors took the lead after the break when Fabrice Muamba combined with Darren Pratley before driving his effort high into the Arsenal goal.
Andrey Arshavin equalised for the Gunners with a low drive into the Bolton bottom corner.
Arshavin then set up Park, who curled in his shot into the far corner.
Arsenal have been very reliant on Robin van Persie this season, with the striker having scored seven of his side's 15 goals in the league.
The Dutchman's replacements have failed to make the most of their own chances this season so far, but Wenger may have struck gold with South Korea captain Park.
The forward led the line superbly at Emirates Stadium. He twice forced Bolton's Adam Bogdan to save at full stretch in the first half before finally beating the keeper with the winning strike.
The goal was created by Arshavin, who drifted inside and ran towards goal, taking three defenders with him, before laying the ball off to his team-mate on the left.
Park took one look at the goal before beautifully bending his shot just inside the Bolton left-hand upright.
Arsenal's second had come only nine minutes after the Trotters had taken the lead through Muamba.
The England Under-21 player dispossessed Emmanuel Frimpong 35 yards out and played a one-two with Pratley in the area before thrashing his shot into the roof of the goal.
But six minutes later the Gunners were level. Arshavin picked up the ball 30 yards out on the left before driving into the area and slotting an angled shot into corner.
Once behind, Bolton had enough chances to have equalised and even won it themselves, but they were thwarted by Lukasz Fabianski in the Arsenal goal.
The Pole saved low to deny Gael Kakuta, Ivan Klasnic and Gary Cahill. He also prevented substitute Chris Eagles from scoring from distance with an unorthodox save that might have gone down as a keeping "howler" had it gone in.
But finally his heroics, along with the skills of Park and Arshavin, ensured Arsenal reached the quarter-final stage for the ninth consecutive season.
Bolton manager Owen Coyle:
"Arsenal scored two goals from their two shots on target. They never had another shot on target.
"We scored a very good goal to put us in front and looked to be the team in the ascendancy.
"Then, from my end, the disappointing thing is as good as Arsenal's finishes were, they could have been avoided.
"I thought Arshavin should have been closed down and we paid a heavy cost for that.
"Then we gave the ball away cheaply and got punished by Park with a sublime finish.
"From that moment on it was waves of attacks and not just that but clear goalscoring opportunities.
"We should have buried them, we never did and now we're out of the cup because of it."