Local Michelin star winners for 2021!
The 32 eateries the Michelin Guide says you need to try. And some are offering takeaway! Here's the full line-up for Kent foodies.
Hot off the press, the latest Michelin Star winners have just been announced – highlighting the fine dining destinations across the UK.
Plus they also list ‘good quality, good value restaurants’ using the Bib Gourmand award and ‘very good food’ with the Michelin Plate award. Meaning from luxurious restaurants to local village pubs, there’s something for everyone, in every price bracket.
We’ve compiled a list of the full line-up for Kent (and just over the border) – to save you the bother. Some are offering takeaway so you can enjoy their dishes right now. Or why not start drawing up your own ‘Dine Out Wish List’ for when Lockdown lifts? Once guidelines allow we can all head out and support our favourite eateries once more… and in the meantime, salivation station!
Stark, Broadstairs ★
It may look like a remodelled log-cabin from the outside but it’s the perfect intimate setting for your next date night! Run by husband and wife team, Ben and Sophie Crittenden, they have grown this small and perfectly formed eatery into one of the county’s finest dining experiences. This quirky restaurant should be next on your list with it’s frequently changing, seasonal six course tasting menu. Intimate, laid-back and simply very, very good at what they do – Stark we salute you!
15 Oscar Road, Broadstairs, CT10 1QJ
Fordwich Arms, Fordwich ★
It’s the winning mix of a great Kent pub that just so happens to serve exquisite food which affirms once again why it’s really not that bad living in the sticks. The riverside location adds to its charm and the trail from the village of Fordwich to the Reed Pond is meant to be good – apparently the pond once supplied the monks of Canterbury with water (fact fans).
King Street, Fordwich, CT2 0DB
Hide and Fox, Saltwood ★ (Take Away offered)
What was once the village shop now an exciting dining experience run by couple, Allister Barsby and Alice Bussi. Start your night with a cocktail and enjoy modern British cuisine served in an intimate and relaxed environment, with a focus on carefully sourced seasonal ingredients and fine wines. Try their ‘At Home Service’ here.
The Green, Saltwood, Hythe, CT21 4PS
The Sportsman, Seasalter ★
This pub has long sat at the top of the chart and rightly so. On the surface it’s very low key – even describing itself on Twitter as the ‘grotty rundown pub by the sea’. All a bit tongue-in-cheek obviously – more that they just don’t buy into pretentiousness and there’s a really laid-back, relaxed atmosphere. When I visited the menu was simple and perfectly executed – the fish could not have tasted fresher (it’s right by the sea just outside Whitstable).
Faversham Road, Seasalter, Whitstable, CT5 4BP
Arya, Ramsgate – Bib Gourmand
This hidden gem offers up amazing tapas style dishes, with small and large plates to choose from, with a warm, welcoming vibe. Right in the heart of Ramsgate – with a pub downstairs. The menu is updated weekly to keep things interesting for the guests – and the chef!
56-58 King Street, Ramsgate, CT11 8NY
Compasses Inn, Crundale – Bib Gourmand
This rural pub is found deep into the chocolate-box depths of the Kentish countryside, down narrow winding country roads tucked away in the village of Crundale, between Canterbury and Ashford. Husband and wife team, Rob and Donna Taylor describe their pub as a ‘muddy wellies and fine food kind of place,’ which sums it up perfectly.
Sole Street, Crundale, Canterbury, CT4 7ES
Swan Wine Kitchen, Tenterden – Bib Gourmand (Take Away offered)
Set in the vineyards of Chapel Down, enjoy delicious food in the natural surroundings with a fresh menu every season. The 80-cover restaurant boats a private dining Chef’s Table and outdoor terrace with beautiful views across the county which is the perfect setting for drinks. Try it for yourself now with their Click&Collect service!
Chapel Down Winery, Small Hythe Road, Tenterden, TN30 7NG
Kentish Hare, Bidborough – Bib Gourmand (Take Away offered)
One of the 4 new Bib Gourmand restaurants in Kent to win the highly sought after distinction and every time we’ve visited this eatery it always makes the gourmet grade. It’s welcoming and stylishly designed (with the hare theme and quirky furnishings dotted around the place). Looking forward to the days we can dine at these destinations again – and in the meantime check out their Take Away options here.
95 Bidborough Ridge, Bidborough, TN3 0XB
The Small Holding, Kilndown (Take Away offered)
Our favourite rustic restaurant has been awarded a Michelin Green Star in the Michelin Guide 2021! The award recognises restaurants with a focus on environmental practices. We know The Small Holding work directly with growers, farmers and fishermen, forage in hedgerows and woodlands and grow their vegetables and rear animals. Sustainability is at the heart of everything they do and we couldn’t be happier for them! Experience it at home for yourself, click here for their lunch and evening menus.
Ranters Lane, Kilndown, Cranbrook, TN17 2SG
The Warren, Tunbridge Wells
Set above the Tunbridge Wells High St shops, this little-bit-quirky restaurant showcases meats from its 650 acre estate, holding stock of Sussex Cattle, Boer Goats, Fallow Deer and Wild Boar amongst others which the restaurant draws on for its menu. Dress up and enjoy the A La Carte menu in the evening, try the excellent value lunch menu or just go for cocktails or bubbles with snacks in the bar or on the terrace that overlooks the town.
5A High St, Tunbridge Wells, TN1 1UL
The Poet, Matfield (Take Away offered)
Fairly off the beaten track not something you’ll stumble over, is this unassuming-looking pub. With its rustic charm and inglenook fireplace, it’s making its mark on the foodie map. Experience everything you love about this country pub from home with their Poet @ Home takeaway menus.
Maidstone Road, TN12 7JH
The Old Fishmarket, Tunbridge Wells
Situated in the heart of the Pantiles, Sankey’s champagne and seafood bar is the perfect place to relax and enjoy the very best British fish and shellfish. Go for the standard oysters, starters and mains or be adventurous and build your own platters! So whether you’re stopping by for a light lunch, pre-evening nibble or full banquet, it’s the ideal venue.
19 The Upper Pantiles, Royal Tunbridge Wells, TN2 5TN
Thackeray’s, Tunbridge Wells
Situated in the heart of Tunbridge Wells, this eatery is perfect for a special lunch (it’s only £25 for 2-courses) or date night (with The Common Rooms just up the road). Celebrity chef, Richard Phillips, is set to reimagine the traditional culinary experience of Thackeray’s, breaking the mould.
85 London Rd, Tunbridge Wells, TN1 1EA
The Old Bank, Westerham (Take Away offered)
As the name suggests this restaurant is built in the town’s old bank, it’s the perfect spot for a special occasion dinner or celebratory lunch. Even if you are not celebrating, just find an excuse to spoil yourself and sample some fine dining, wine or cocktails in uber-stylish surroundings. Chef Adam Turley has a life-long passion for food and a love for fresh, seasonal and regional ingredients. Can’t wait? Try The Old Bank At Home.
8 Market Square, Westerham, TN16 1AW
Swan, West Malling (Take Away offered)
Stylish yet characterful restaurant, it brings a relaxed yet vibrant atmosphere. Along with the sleek cocktail bar and restaurant, upstairs there’s a lounge bar and three private dining room, perfect for social gatherings. Enjoy modern day classics from their A La Carte menu or we hear the brunch is one of the best in the area! Put it to the test and order from their weekend takeaway menu now.
35 Swan Street, West Malling, ME19 6JU
Amano, West Malling
A beautiful Italian restaurant with rooms, ‘Amano’ meaning ‘by hand’, bringing Italian tradition to West Malling. Pasta is made fresh daily on-site with their wood-fired pizzas and authentic, unfussy dishes.
47 Swan St, West Malling, ME19 6JU
Wife of Bath, Wye
Acquired by the team behind award-winning Rocksalt in Folkestone and The Duke William in Ickham, this very pretty house has chic bedrooms and a stylishly understated restaurant with Modern British dishes. When can we move in?
4 Upper Bridge Street, Wye, TN25 5AF
West House, Biddenden
Small and stylish, family-run restaurant housed in a 16th Century weaver’s cottage in the middle of picturesque Biddenden. At the helm is Graham Garrett who, after a previous career as a successful rock musician, hung up his sticks and took up the chef’s knife. But Graham still carries the down-to-earth, no-nonsense air of the days when he manned the drums for bands like the YA YA and Dumb Blondes. And Graham’s cool yet down-to-earth approach filters down to all the wonderful bold, rustic food he delivers. We likey.
28 High Street, Biddenden, Kent, TN27 8AH
Plough Inn, Stalisfield Green (Take Away offered)
A very rustic, traditional 15th century pub with beautiful views over the Downs, where you’ll find the usual suspects on the menu with some modern takes on their A La Carte. Including stylish rooms situated in a barn building in the back garden, a real country retreat. Plenty to see and do, a great stop-off for walkers and cyclists. See their latest Takeaway Menu here – keep checking their socials as it changes each week!
Stalisfield Road, Faversham, ME13 0HY
The Windmill, Hollingbourne
Two-minutes from the entrance of Leeds Castle is this pretty pub, with its giant inglenook fireplace and low-slung beams. You’ll find tempting bar snacks, a superb roast menu and some British classics.
32 Eyhorne Street, Hollingbourne, ME17 1TR
An elegant Georgian manor house surrounded in tranquil grounds, the restaurant has a widespread reputation for classically based dishes with modern touches. We love how they use the herbs and vegetables from the manor’s own walled kitchen garden with local game and fish fresh from the quayside at nearby Whitstable and Hythe. Plus 6 charming bedrooms are with their own unique style and character designed for comfort.
Macknade Manor, Canterbury Rd, Faversham, ME13 8XE
Small neighbourhood seafood restaurant with a friendly team, it’s an understated little bistro that packs a lot of punch. Their ethos is fiercely sustainable, even the tables are made of compressed recycled plastic! They create delicious, ethically sourced seafood alongside simple, seasonal vegetable-based dishes – no meat here!
21 The Parade, Margate, CT9 1EX
Whitstable Oyster Company, Whitstable
Located on the beach with stunning views of the oyster grounds, this seafood restaurant offers some of the very best oysters, fish and seafood. There’s a large terrace, two wood-panelled rooms and trendy lounge bear. The hand-written menu changes daily depending on the latest catch.
The Royal Native Oyster Shores, Horsebridge, Whitstable, CT5 1BU
Hantverk & Found, Margate (Take Away offered)
A lively Sushi and Japanese restaurant in Margate Old Town – where you can even find an art exhibition by local artists in the cellar. Enjoy seafood from the Kent coast in dishes bursting with freshness and Japanese flavours. Enjoy takeaway on Fridays and Saturdays, order now!
16 King Street, Margate CT9 1DA
The Goods Shed, Canterbury (Take Away offered)
More than a restaurant, it’s also a daily farmers’ market and food hall showcasing local produce and fine foods from an array of independent suppliers since 2002. They bring the traditional market together with casual dining to create a unique experience, from rustic pies and gourmet sandwiches to cocktails and small plates served at wooden tables. Experience it from home and shop online.
Station Road, Canterbury, CT2 8AN
Bottega Caruso, Margate
A charming small family business bringing authentic, delicious Italian food to Kent. Using their Mamma’s and Nonna’s recipes and the best ingredients they can find in Campania, they make fresh pasta, tomato sauce, breads, cakes, jams and relishes. If that wasn’t enough they also host Supper Club evenings, pasta workshops and teach Italian.
2-4 Broad Street, Margate, CT9 1EW
The Pig, Bridge Place
The Coach House is home to the restaurant, filled with signature PIG touches but feeling markedly different to its sister restaurants with a kitchen that opens-up into the space, letting you in on the action. With a kitchen garden and the emphasis always on the home-grown as it is locally sourced within a 25 mile radius, they describe themselves as having an obsessive commitment to simple food, done well. Hallelujah, that’s just how we like it!
Bourne Park Road, Bridge, Canterbury, CT4 5BH
Wyatt & Jones, Broadstairs (Take Away offered)
Follow the narrow road under the arch and head towards the beach, here you’ll find a rustic cafe with stained-glass windows and beautiful sea views. Specialising in sea food, their menus change with the seasons and all their produce is sourced locally. Here’s just how local: when lobster is in season it’s caught half a mile away and delivered straight from the boat to our door. Their pop-up Flotsam & Jetsam is open for seafood & frites, check their Instagram for the latest menu.
23-27 Harbour Street, Broadstairs, CT10 1EU
With a stunning view of Folkestone Harbour and beyond, this is a smart, stylish, but relaxed, restaurant. The owner is Gordon Ramsay protégé Mark Sargeant so not surprisingly the food is excellent with the focus on local and fish being the obvious speciality. The trendy façade contrasts with its immediate surrounds which are pretty down-to-earth, and perhaps taking this into consideration, the menu is sensibly priced for a foodie destination (£21.50 for Two Courses) so it’s a win-win.
4-5 Fishmarket, Folkestone, CT19 6AA
MORE STARRY OUTINGS CLOSE BY…
The Bell, Ticehurst
Quirky 16th century hotel and pub, in the heart of the old East Sussex village of Ticehurst. Michelin said: “Menus offer tasty, original dishes – some with Asian influences.” Sounds good to us!
High Street, Ticehurst, TN5 7AS
The Curlew, Bodiam
Not even open a year and it’s already in the Michelin guide! The inclusion of the Curlew comes as no surprise to anybody who’s eaten at Will Devlin’s Sussex restaurant. Social dining at its finest.
Junction Road, Bodiam, TN32 5UY
The Driftwood, Bexhill
A minute’s walk from the town’s charming seafront promenade and the iconic De La Warr pavilion in the quintessential town of Bexhill on Sea, is this stylish little bistro. Husband and wife team, offer vibrantly Asian influenced dishes – including Chinese dumplings!
40 Sackville Road, Bexhill, TN39 3JE
I’ll take a table for two at all of them once lockdown lifts, please!