A great Kent address. Perfect for visiting Vita Sackville-West’s famous garden at Sissinghurst Castle, it’s a brilliant bolthole for Londoners, with superb food, delicious bedrooms, a lovely terrace and garden, as well as prices you can afford. The Milk House recalls Sissinghurst’s former name, Milkhouse Street, which changed after a local 19th-century smuggling gang brought it unwanted notoriety. Owners Sarah and Dane have gone for the dairy angle: paintwork in creamy white and the palest mossy green; bedrooms called Dairy, Churn, Byre and Buttery – and Udderly Private. The all-day dining pub looks cool and sophisticated, with a great buzz, and the menu ranges from imaginative dishes to the best of pub grub. The staff are young and frisky; Sarah and Dane have created a contented cow and they should be proud of themselves. There’s live music on Wednesdays and even an annual summertime music and food Milk Fest. Doubles from £80.
Name to Know: Dane Allchorne, owner and head chef, who was born in New Zealand and is trained in classical French cuisine. You’ll often find the kitchen’s local suppliers drinking in The Milk House bar, ask Dane to introduce you.
See: Take a stroll around the apple orchards that surround the hotel, and don’t miss the bluebell walk through Sissinghurst’s ancient woodlands that come to life in April.
Eat: You’re spoilt for choice at The Milk House, from pizza to pub classics, there is something to suit all tastes. The Dining Room offers an adventurous selection of starters, main courses and puddings, all prepared with local, seasonal ingredients.
Buy: Visit the Chapel Down vineyard and buy some of their lovely English sparkling wine.
Want to find out more? Visit the hotel's website.
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