TRY THIS: Weekend Getaway!
Want to be the first one to discover this brand new boutique hotel in Faversham? Mr Muddy Kent and I visited The Quay for a long overdue weekend away...
Be one of the first to discover this brand new restaurant, bar and boutique hotel in Faversham. Having opened in 2020 during what was a challenging year even for the most established of eateries, this stylish venue has already gone from strength to strength.
Mr Muddy Kent and I visited The Quay for a long overdue weekend away for my birthday in August. So…what did we find?
The cute, quirky building and interiors are just as I like things – understated, rather than flashy. And the staff are friendly – while still maintaining a laid-back vibe – just all pretty chilled. Everything screams hidden gem.
The 8 rooms have all been beautifully and individually decorated, so the feel is ’boutique’ and definitely not large-scale hotel.
We stayed in the Luxury Emperor Room (well it was my birthday, plus we’d not been away for, like, forever…) It has a gorgeous 4-poster bed which is like two small doubles put together. I defy you not to have a good nights’ sleep in this bed.
And there’s a claw top bath (make sure you find some time over the weekend to chill in a bath full of bubbles and watch the TV!) Plus you’ve got a nice size en suite, too with a shower, should you prefer.
Outside, and for sunnier days, is a cute, little courtyard which the Luxury Emperor Room overlooks.
SCOFF & QUAFF
It’d heard about The Quay from a local friend. And, even although it opened in the middle of the pandemic, it soon became a real foodie favourite with anyone in the Faversham area – so that’s pretty good endorsement. Won’t be long before it’s a destination place to dine for anyone coming from further afield too.
Everything we ate, from the first bite of the homemade bread to the last crumbs of dessert, was pitch perfect.
The menu is packed with delicious local ingredients from some great suppliers including Stour Valley Game, Samsons Fruit & Veg, Hinxden Farm Dairy. Whilst the Bar offers a fantastic choice of local favourites from Kentish Pip, Gadds, Copper Rivett Distillery. Just to name a few.
Cheeky Pimms to get things kickstarted, anyone? We ate in The Quay’s own restaurant on the Friday evening – I started with the Hop Cured Salmon, lemon creme fraiche and cucumber (which was sliced into the thinnest, juiciest, jelly-like slithers) – a deliciously refreshing dish (pictured, below).
Mr Muddy being the meat-lover chose the Crispy Duck, Watercress & Bean shoot salad, soy & sesame dressing – all highly flavoursome and wonderfully crispy, in his words (pictured below).
Then, for Mains, I enjoyed Spring Pea Risotto, Ellie’s goats cheese (from Ellie’s Dairy in Kent) and radish. If you’ve had as many risottos in your time as me – you’ll know, it’s not as easy as you’d think to get it right. Sometimes they can be a bit mushy and disappointing. But this was easily one of the best I’ve ever tasted. Just fresh and tasty with the goats cheese – and the radish added some crunch and colour.
And Mr Muddy went for Beef Sirloin (pink), ox cheek croquette, grilled artichoke, pea puree no less (pictured below).
Unfortunately for my waistline, the puddings sounded too good to pass up on, so I finished by scarfing down Vanilla burnt cream, local strawberries and shortbread, which was almost too pretty to eat. I said almost.
The Quay has a simple, pared-back A La Carte menu – there’s not loads of choice – and yet what is on there is excellent and it certainly catered for both our tastes which are quite different.
This is simple, flavoursome food wonderfully executed and champions local producers where possible.
OUT & ABOUT
Stay at The Quay and you are just moments from Faversham Market, (pictured below) which is held around the Guildhall (pictured above) in the Market Place on Tuesdays, Fridays and Saturdays every week. There’s lots of antiques and interior shops dotted along the side streets too with little treats inside just waiting to be discovered.
And in the opposite direction another short walk will take you to Standard Quay, known to locals as the Creek (pictured below). A former commercial port this is one of Faversham’s not-to-be-missed jewels. Stroll past the classic ships, boats and barges until you reach the collection of barn buildings selling antiques and interior goodies.
Or if you’re feeling adventurous, you can hire a Surrey Bike (it’s what you call a 4-wheel bike, apparently) for just £10 an hour and explore the area by pedal-power! Although it’s all perfectly easy to walk around – and maybe that’s advisable if you’ve been eating your way through the weekend!
We loved Aladdins Loft, based in the 17th Century Monks Granary, where you’ll find a unique collection of antiques, collectables, retro and vintage jewellery, artworks, books, tableware, clothing and toys. And there’s the Secret Garden Tea Room or Papa Bianco pizzeria for refreshments.
Food-lovers will also want to head to Macknade, Faversham, the famous food hall (pictured above) and food village (pictured below) with tables and benches to sit outside and dine from a variety of street food vans, like our personal favourite Silver Birch Fine Foods.
THE MUDDY VERDICT
Good for: Getting away as a couple for a night or two – or for coming down from London and exploring the area. Why waste your precious time by spending hours stuck in the car – if you live in Kent or London this is a great relaxed over-nighter-destination on your doorstep. Visit the restaurant for family gatherings, lazy lunches or dinners with friends. Easy walking distance to shops and a short (10 mins or so) drive to Kent’s cool coastal scene, like Whitstable too.
Not for: There’s a laid-back vibe here, so if you’re after something super swanky or you’re out on the razz with girlfriends, a quiet low-key setting might not be top of your wish-list. And while the food and service are excellent, we’re not talking white tablecloths and fine dining so if you’re after something very formal, this one’s not for you.
The damage: STAY: Luxury Emperor Room, Weekdays £140 per night, Weekends £160 per night. (Prices for Small Double start at £90 per night.) FOOD: Starters around £7/£8; Mains start at £14.50 for the risotto to £19.50 for the beef. There’s a Set Lunch Menu too – offering Two Courses for £20 and Three Courses for £25, which is good value for the quality.
The Quay, Conduit St, Faversham ME13 7DF. Tel: 01795 53038, The Quay.
Hungry for more? Take a look at our other pub and restaurant reviews here.