Black Horse and Hoodens
The team at the Black Horse and Hoodens are committed to providing a traditional, family-orientated pub for their community, but they combine this with an impressive menu that goes far beyond traditional pub grub. Old favourites are always available, but in addition you'll also find fine-dining options like rabbit rillettes with homemade green tomato chutney and olive oil toast and devilled monkfish loin with truffle oil mash, caper hollandaise and braised pancetta. From a simple sandwich to a grand feast of a whole roast suckling pig, the Black Horse and Hoodens are able to provide it all. Diners can mix and match from the menus, in keeping with the relaxed, informal ethos of the venue; vegetarians may care to note that the chef is happy to cook one-off special requests for those who have pre-booked a table. In all cases, expect generous portions.
The pub's highly accomplished chef honed his skills at Michelin-starred restaurants and now brings his exacting standards to the kitchen at the Black Horse and Hoodens. Menus change frequently to reflect seasonality and everything produced is cooked to order using fresh ingredients. The meat and vegetables the chef selects are always of the best quality and largely reared or grown within the county of Kent - even their sauces and chutneys are homemade.
Continuing the themes of excellence and the use of local produce, at the bar you will find a constantly changing choice of Cask Marque-accredited real ales - at least one of which will always be from a local brewer - as well as an extensive wine list featuring wines from Biddenden Vineyards.
Friendly, helpful staff complete the experience and they also know how to put on a good night (see their website for listings of forthcoming events). Highly rated by public voting in the Taste of Kent Awards for 2010, this pub is clearly doing something right.