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Kentish Horse, Mark Beech

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user reviews of the Kentish Horse, Mark Beech

please note - reviews on this site are purely the opinion of site visitors, so don't take them too seriously.

A pleasantly located hostelry serving good beer with a very nice large beer garden with very good views.

Nothing not to like. Harveys was good, service was friendly.
terenced - 23 Jul 2019 10:03
I actually really like this country pub. though it is too far away to come more often, I live in tunbridge wells, I make a point of coming here when I am in the west, east grinstead etc. The garden is fantastic with it's views and it's size, the beer is certainly o.k. and, as I prefer pub grub to restaurant food, the portions are really large and wholesome. My family and I always like coming here and I would thoroughly recommend it.
randallette1 - 11 Mar 2019 12:41
I've been coming here on and off for over 30 years and it hasn't changed much. OK it has - they stuck a dining room on the back about 15 years ago - but the pub itself, and the lovely garden with the views, feels unchanged. It's a good pub without being anything special, decent food at a fair price and a fine pint of Larkins - only the one handpump on my recent visit - and not so green wellie as the Rock.

So worth a stop if you're in the area, or if you've been to Annie's up the road (Queen's Arms) and need some food. 20 minutes walk up the hill from Cowden Station; you can roll back down in 15 if you've had enough!
lynx - 11 Aug 2013 23:14
I had lunch here yesterday and funnily enough had the lasagne like the last reviewer. I thought it was very nice and definitely looked and tasted home cooked, it was also very good value. I felt welcomed and the pub is dog friendly so that wasn't a problem either (as I had my mutt with me). There's a lovely big garden and separate play area which I'd imagine would be great to keep children occupied while also being able to keep an eye on them.

All in all, a nice country pub and great value for lunch. It is pub food not restaurant food but does what it sets out to do very well in my opinion and I'll definitely be going back.
wobblymoth - 28 Jun 2012 14:00
Saturday lunchtime.

Waited ages at the bar before being acknowledged by the barmaid. Yes, you do have to change the roll in the credit card machine; yes, you should serve earlier customers first; yes, I should wait my turn.

But it would have been nice to get a welcoming smile and some comment along the lines of 'sorry I won't be a minute'. An unwelcoming start.

A nice crowd of locals soon turned up, and the atmosphere improved accordingly. Also their merry banter covered the sound of Radio 2. (Why? oh why? If I want to listen to Radio 2 - unlikely - I can do that at home. God I hate muzak.)

The Larkins was terrific. But the food was really poor: my lasagne was cold and tasteless - I kept adding salt in the hope of finding some flavour, but no luck. This despite the fact that it came from the 'home-cooked' specials board.

Twenty quid for two is cheap, but I'd rather have paid thirty to have pleasant welcoming service and food that was edible. Especially a smile costs nothing.

Recommended for drinking only - and then more for the regulars than the staff. Sorry - can't give it more than a 4.
LDW - 13 Feb 2011 12:15
I've used this pub for eating on occasions and have been satisfied in the past, but what a change! I ordered a curry which was nothing more than badly defrosted vegetables in pathetic excuse of a sauce which had not a single curry spice in it. My companion ordered scampi which again had recently seen the inside of catering freeze bag. Just these two meals £16! I rated this pub as an eight last time this time it gets one for the garden.
Colourshifter - 5 Jul 2010 23:35
I'd asked fellow contributors to "Beer in the Evening" for recommendations for a family friendly pub in the Hever Castle area. This was one of four places recommended. We chose this one over the other three because we found it first.
The bar staff were welcoming, the food good, and the beer well kept. Larkin's "Traditional" which I've never seen before, and Harvey's Best (seen everywhere).
I must admit I was a tad put off by the swarm of smokers blocking the door to the place, but they were friendly enough.
All things considered, 7/10. Above average, but it needs a wider ale selection.
MankyBadger - 28 Dec 2009 19:21
A case of the sum of the parts is greater than the whole! Food reasonably priced but nothing special. Not an attractive pub but not ugly. Fair beer selection at a good price. Helpful but not overly friendly barmaid. Yet a cracking atmosphere and from my single experience and other comments sounds like this is one of those rarely seen 'hubs of the local community'
baggydave - 28 Dec 2009 11:32
Went here on Saturday and am glad I did. What a great pub, all ales were £2.50, had BB from Westerham, Harvey's Sussex Best and Smiles Mild. Lovely stuff and the folk festival was on which was great. Sunshine, good beer and music friendly people,couldn't ask for much more! One of the best pubs in the area.
Miles007 - 1 Jun 2009 09:22
One of my favourite pubs. Serves a lovely pint of Larkins and good food. A real log fire is cosy in winter, the garden is large with a great view in summer. Well worth a visit.
traditionaldrinker - 9 Apr 2009 19:40
This has always been a good country pub, but thankfully still has a slightly rustic feel rather than being over-gentryfied. Stays open all day, but you may have to make your presence known if you arrive at a quiet time. Nice pint of Larkins, with Harveys available as well.
rpadam - 24 Feb 2009 18:45
Out of the way country pub with a main bar and a small games bar (I thgink there is a restaurant area as well). It was quiet when we visited (it was Sunday evening though). The Larkins beer was well kept and Harveys was also available and prices were average. Service was efficient and friendly. We did not try the food but it looked to be reasonably priced. Generally seemed a nice country pub which still felt like a proper pub. Large outside area in a lovely setting. Worth a visit.
Brewshed - 27 May 2008 17:27
Thankfully downhill if on foot from Hever, and still downhill if rejoining train at Cowden – wouldn’t have enjoyed it t’other way, although some may - I seemingly just missed a visit by 32 ramblers, but nb sign for ‘no muddy boots’. Larkins Traditional, Harveys, and two other handpumps which may be used occasionally. Fairly low ceiling with repro beams in carpetted bar, seating to the left where an real fire burns below the list of hearty sounding homemade specials such as steak & ale pie, or venison stew wi mash & veg, £8.95. Beyond this a large room, the feel of a dining area, with lots of well-spaced seating and large inglenook with wood stove, old photos of pub & neighbourhood, further on to a huge garden with picnic sets, kids play area, & fabulous views over downland to the south. They have paddocks out back and apparently house camping for an annual folk festival (end may) when I suspect the other two beerpumps will be called to action! They hold their own folk nt 2nd Sun of each month. Nice little snug to right of bar with stone floor, large rug, dartboard, tv, real fire, prints of country scenes. It has a nice setting at a crossroad next to the church and probably used to be two cottages as just the right half is externally weatherboarded. It somehow fails to achieve a genuinely rustic feel, probably as the bar is more recent, but it is certainly rural (check image2 if it turns out ok).
trainman - 7 Mar 2008 14:34
Visited this pub with my family last Sunday on the basis of the recommendations on this site. Very pleasant all round. I had a pint of Harveys which was excellent. We all ate and everyone was more than satisfied with what they ordered. The roast beef was as good as I have had anywhere. Nice garden which will be even better in the summer I'm sure, and a good long walk at the rear of the pub to help walkoff all the excess alories! Staff very obliging too. We will definitely be paying the Kentish Horse another visit.
shack - 26 Feb 2008 15:42
Several visits to this pub have proved it to be consistently good for food, the menu has changed for the better this year, and for the beers. High on my list for regular visits.
Colourshifter - 25 Nov 2007 22:29
October 2007. We were looking for somewhere to meet up with friends from Ashford, Orpington and Brighton for dinner at short notice on a Sunday and found the Kentish Horse on Beer in the Evening website. It is a great pub and restaurant. We will be going back again. It was quiet for a Sunday. The staff were friendly and helpful. There is an outside area for the kids to play in. The food was very good and the beer - Larkins and Harveys - was ok too.
tia67uk - 14 Oct 2007 22:17
A real, proper, unpretentious country pub. The food is big and tasty, all straightforward English stuff (except for curry night.) They have well-kept Larkins and Harvey's, and usually a guest ale. There's a very homely atmosphere, it's very comfortable. Worth making a regular visit if you live nearby, or if you're visiting, drop in for a big pie and a pint of good ale after a walk in the beautiful surrounding countryside.
deblacquiere - 14 Dec 2006 16:14
I also visited since 2005 but was pleasantly surprised. Simple, organic, traditional local with dubious but somehow appropriate decor, and well-kept cask ales and reasonable food - sort of good for microwaved if that isn't a contradiction in terms. Friendly, and earthy. Nothing wrong with that.

TWG - 25 Oct 2006 16:35
I'd go along with everything GrahamH has to say This is a real honest traditional village local. Haven't been in for a while, but earlier in the year we had an excellent meal there - simple,but very good value. The beer's good too, as GrahamH says; the Larkin's brewery's just down the road so it doesn't have far to travel. Altogether, well worth a visit.
earlydrinker - 23 Oct 2006 22:48
Genuine free house in picturesque countryside ideal for cyclists and walkers. Good locals pub but also genuinely friendly to visitors. Basic, inexpensive but good quality home cooked food. Three real ales - Larkins (in excellent condition) Harveys and Old Speckled Hen. From the net it appears the pub tries hard to celebrate national events and there are folk/jaz nights. Deserves to succeed and very enjoyable to visit.
GrahamH - 24 Sep 2006 09:19

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