Chef’s Table is a new, modern British restaurant in West Malling with a passion for using high quality, seasonal food sourced in Kent.
Located in the beautiful, old building which previously housed Bean Rush, the restaurant has retained the traditional vibe and, due to the clever refurbishment, succeeds in feeling both intimate and relaxed.
We visited on the opening night and received a warm welcome from head chef Brad and his friendly team. The restaurant has comfortable and spaced seating for ten with an open kitchen which enables you to observe the action!
Chef’s Table currently offers a seven-course tasting menu which changes regularly and can be accompanied by a recommended wine menu. We began with a crunchy snack of tapioca crisps dotted with a light goats curd cream and tiny sorrel leaves, and a mini tart of butternut squash and apple. This was followed by a delicious starter of Jersey royal potatoes and truffle in a chive and potato velvety sauce.
Our next course was my favourite: beautiful cod loin perfectly cooked with girolles mushrooms, asparagus and the most amazing mussel broth.
We were beginning to understand why Brad had chosen to go with a tasting menu. He is an extremely talented chef with great attention to detail and this gives the diner the chance to try dishes you might otherwise forego.
Our next course highlighted beef: a rare rump steak and slow cooked ox cheek. Accompanied by black garlic puree, kohlrabi and a roasted Jersey royal potato, the dish was elevated by a beautifully rich Bordeaux sauce.
We chose not to have any wine, but I noted that there is a fair selection. It would be good to also include some of the quality wines we have here in Kent: Yotes Court, Mereworth or other local producers.
Our next course was a set cream infused with meadowsweet. (Similar to elderflower in flavour, this plant is also a traditional hangover remedy). The set cream was topped with lime granita, micro lemon verbena and sat in a bright red, cherry sauce – very moreish. The second dessert (!) was an 80% dark chocolate delice with crunchy honeycomb and one of the best salted caramel ice creams I have tasted.
To finish we had light citrus Madeleines and home-made toffee – yum!!
We left feeling relaxed, full and lucky to have experienced the food of an exciting talented new chef.
Postscript! Brad has just introduced a wine pairing option and is ‘looking at using more local wines coming up’.
Chef’s Table, 46 King Street, West Malling, Kent, ME19 6QT