Invited to review The Kentish Hare in Bidborough, Tunbridge Wells, you can imagine our excitement. Owned by celebrity chefs Chris and James Tanner, this gastro pub is set to celebrate its first year on 10th May.
Having already notched up three prestigious awards, including an entry into the Michelin Good Pub Guide 2015, a ‘one to watch’ commendation from the judges of the Top 50 Gastro Pubs in the UK awards and 2AA rosettes following a recent AA inspection, The Kentish Hare has already set the bar very high indeed.
Privately owned, the decor and ambience is handpicked and individual giving a relaxed but smart and contemporary feel. On perusing the menu I decided on an entree of a glass of prosecco while my husband enjoyed a cold beer, with olives and bread to nibble on.
Once settled in the main dining room overlooking the lovely outdoor area, we were ready to make our food choices . We finally settled on the crispy pork fritter with goat’s cheese cream, apple and celery, and seared scallops with carrot puree, treacle bacon and apple as starters.
The main course menu was a delight to choose from. We decided on the duck breast with orange and caramel glaze, turnips, kale and pommes Anna for my husband, and corn-fed chicken with dumplings, broccoli, roscoff onions and hazelnuts for me. The wine list is excellent and very reasonably priced.
Feeling pleasantly nourished and content, I was unsure if I would be able to manage a desert but, as always, decided we would share one. The vanilla cheesecake with passion fruit, Plymouth gin and tonic sorbet and gingerbread was sensational.
The Kentish Hare comes highly recommended – we will certainly visit again with relatives and friends.
• The Kentish Hare, 95 Bidborough Ridge, Bidborough TN3 OXB, call 01892 525709 or visit www.thekentishhare.com
Words: Tara Brooksbank