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Bell Inn, Smarden

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user reviews of the Bell Inn, Smarden

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

Hello to the saviours of the Bell and welcome to Smarden. We heard you had changed ownership so we paid a visit. 1st impressions were good! The fire was lit and the bar was stocked with spirits and the fridges were full and there were 3 Ales available. I took the masterbrew (always a good indicator of beer condition because its crap at best) I have say it was enjoyable! I almost ordered another it was so good! but I went for Spitfire. Superb! Well done cellar manager, absolutely bang on. I felt obliged to try the spook (lol). Lovely, superb. We took a look at the menu out of interest and it seemed to be ok but we eat at home. the prices looked inviting! Now the downside - the barman was overpowering. He felt the need to impress on us that we should come to him for drinks because the staff were new and would not be able to serve us properly. He asked us outright to email the pub to say how good he was. We cant because he was not. He also told us that he was about to 'get' some money and him and his wife was going to buy a B&B. I dont care what he wants. If thats your manager you need to take a look at your self. Why is your manager pissing people off with obvious BS? The beer is superb, so much so that we may eat at the Bell! 10 from 10 for the beer, 0 from 10 for the bar person/manager
beerisdinner - 23 Oct 2014 23:15
Been here twice now during cycle trips. Very warming atmosphere in the Bar area, and the fireplace is very welcoming on cold days. Beer is kept well with a decent range for a Shepherd Neame pub. Food is extortionately expensive so decided not to eat here.
Buster_M - 30 Oct 2012 14:50
A bunch of us went out to show our support for some country pubs. Ordered three bowls of chips and thought it pleasant if we could make our own butties - but refused to pay £5 for 10 slices of flat white bread. Shepherd Neame will kill this place.
JimQ - 19 Jul 2009 18:58
Oh dear. I remember this place in its heyday. I first visited the place in August 1981 and have been back several times over the years. For years it was a place to get good food and good beer. But now Ė disaster! Itís been taken over and is just another Shepherd Neame pub.
Donít get me wrong, Shepherd Neame is good beer, and we had a smashing drop of the mild, but I tend to stay away from Neame pubs. They all do the same beer, and seem to have a corporate policy of not having a guest ale. The serious beer hunter will give a Neame pub a wide berth for this reason Ė probably half the pubs in the county are Neame pubs and they all do exactly the same half-dozen beers.
Whilst itís in a very scenic location and has a really good garden, itís not what it once was, and is now certainly in last place out of the three Smarden pubs.

MankyBadger - 16 Aug 2008 22:30
Excellent pub excellent food GREAT STAFF locals very friendly well worth a detour
roysta - 21 Mar 2007 10:04
this is a great pub in the kent countryside full of character and an olde worlde atmosphere. The real ales are really great even though they only serve Shepherd Neame brands. We really liked the small bar and little restaurant as the large bar was very smoky and seemed to be full of kids. Dodgy speaking bar member didn't really understand what we were trying to order and our food came out totally wrong- we got the wrong fish. Apart from that we woul;d visit again with friends providing we could sit in the non-smoking area. Highly recommendable
robert devon - 17 Nov 2006 09:18

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