The glorious county of Kent is truly a food lover's dream. Packed with elegant Michelin-starred restaurants and contemporary cafes, visitors to the area will have a whole host of dining experiences at their fingertips. Fruit, vegetables and meats from organic farms and fresh fish caught daily from little fishing towns dotted along the coast make their way to many of the area's restaurants, just waiting for you to come and sample them. This guide has been to compiled to introduce you to our favourite places to eat in Kent.
Stay at one of our holiday cottages in Kent. For the chefs and culinary mages among you, we have some lovely cottages with exceptional kitchens for you to try out some recipes in. Whether you are holidaying as a couple or with friends and family, we have some great properties, large and small for you to choose from.
When you arrive at this establishment, you feel as though you are popping around to a friend’s house who just happens to live in the High Street. Housed in a 16th-century weaver’s cottage fronting onto the main street in the Kentish village of Biddenden, its brickwork and modern interior remind you that you have, in fact, come for a meal out! It has a reputation for simple but fantastic-quality food with locally-sourced ingredients as well as buttery olive oils brought back from the groves of Italy.
- The venison comes highly recommended
- You'll be just down the road from our cosy Biddenden cottages
The renowned London restaurant has branched out again, this time coming to the elegant spa town of Tunbridge Wells. The restaurant not only offers a wide selection of dining options but also a fantastic brunch menu which you can enjoy sitting around its brilliant retro-style long curved bar.
- The weekend brunch is just perfect after a long lie-in
- Head there if you are staying in our Frant cottages
Follow the roads east as far as can go and you will reach Dungeness. A large nature reserve and village on Europe's largest shingle bank awaits; it's a unique seaside environment which is referred to as the UK's only desert. Technically, it rains too much to be classify as an actual desert, but Dungeness wears the description well; its a great place to escape the busy towns and cities. The Pilot is a wonderful place to find great fish and chips and a pint at the edge of Dungeness. Beloved by the late filmmaker and Dungeness resident Derek Jarman, we'll back up his claim to say that this is the place for the finest fish and chips in Kent.
- Our pick from the menu is the battered cod and chips, alongside a pint of ale.
- Head here if you are staying at our wonderful Dungeness property, which is a former railway carriage - Stonihoe.
The Sportsman is a welcome addition to the small seaside village of Seasalter with its great location, friendly staff and excellent relaxed atmosphere. Oysters and fish are caught from the Thames Estuary behind the pub that leads out to the North Sea, and the meat, game and vegetables are sourced from marshland in front. Amazing puddings and an impressive wine list make this the place to go, especially as it is not expensive considering the quality of the food. As well as the a la carte menu, they have a tasting menu which reflects the seasons as well as the local environment.
- Our pick from the menu is the Whitstable native oysters, rock oysters with hot chorizo, and poached rock oysters with pickled cucumber and avruga caviar.
- Head there if you are staying in our Whitstable cottages - it's the perfect place to relax after enjoying a stroll along the coast to Seasalter.
At the heart of Canterbury is this excellent collection of food stalls and a restaurant in the same place. Eat up on the mezzanine, where you can plan your gastronomic assault from. Seek out the best cooked fish, game, red meat and fresh vegetables, and don't forget to leave room for the puddings, which are truly superb - you're bound to leave fully sated.
Read’s in Faversham is set in lovely gardens. The restaurant has prestige as holding and retaining a Michelin star accolade for 20 years (the second-longest holder in the UK). The high-quality menu is made up of classic French cuisine with a British twist. It's a guaranteed treat if you fancy a night of fine dining in pleasant surroundings, but make sure you book ahead.
- Try the ham and pea mousse; smoked haddock in a cream sauce topped with cheese soufflé; Kentish lamb served with buttery asparagus and garden vegetables; and Cassis-soaked summer pudding.
- Stay at one of our Whitstable cottages when you come to Kent for your holidays.
Enjoy a relaxing pint and some dinner at this gorgeous old village inn in a picturesque setting, converted into a contemporary restaurant. The bar even has its own brand of sparkling wine from a neighbouring vineyard. The inn has a rural feel, set in woodland with striking views across Alkham Valley. The exposed brick walls and beamed ceilings are evocative of the building’s rich heritage. Enjoy the creative à la carte menu and four-course dinners all centering around seasonal, local produce.
- The rose pink woodland pigeon breast is amazing.
- Stay at one of our Faversham cottages so you can enjoy a meal at The Marquis of Granby with ease.
If Italian food is your ‘thing’ then this little pocket of Naples on the Thames Estuary is a great prospect. Located in Herne Bay, it's worth a few visits so you can sample exotic pasta dishes as well as their traditionally made authentic Italian pizzas. Being on the coast, seafood looms large on the menu.
- The meatier the pizza, the better.
- Stay at one of our holiday cottages on the Kent coast.
If we have inspired you to visit some of our secret eateries, even more culinary adventures await with our guides to the vineyards of Kent.
Explore Kent's vineyards
Tastebuds already tempted? Take a look at our places to stay in Kent to start planning your foodie getaway.
Browse our Kent cottages
** Please remember that restaurant menus are seasonal and constantly changing so our recommendations may not be available. Please call the establishments beforehand to check availability.
Pic 1 @ westhousebiddenden
Pic 2 @ ivytunbridgeswells
Pic 3 @ upinsmoke
Pic 4 @ fergymurph1
Pic 5 @ Olivemuffins
Pic 6 @ terriblymalled
Pic 7 @ StevenG
Pic 8 @ masterkmisstressj
Pic 9 @ blackkorea
Pic 10 @ mattsmood