The Dorset Arms Pub

4.3
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193 reviews
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£26 to £40
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Gastro Pub

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Sunday Lunch
Welcome to The Dorset Arms, one of Sussex's best kept secrets!

The Dorset Arms Public House in Withyham is an 18th century alehouse situated in the outstandingly beautiful Sussex Weald. Part of the historic Buckhurst Estate, the pub is named after the Earls and Dukes of Dorset, one time heads of the Sackville family, and shares a heritage of family ownership now headed by their descendant, the present Earl De La Warr.
What 193 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.3based on recent ratings
4.2
food
4.4
service
4.2
ambience
4.1
value
Noise · Moderate
94% of people would recommend it to a friend
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TS
Brighton
2 reviews
Dined 2 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

Very good food and service with locally sourced ingredients. Excellent menu

P
Hampshire
4 reviews
Dined 4 days ago
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

Excellent but only got 4/5 A’s the puddings did not match the standard of the starters or mains. The salted caramel chocolate tort was the disappointment for me. Really very good otherwise. The bitter chocolate ice cream was awesome so it was my choice of pud.

JW
Kent
1 review
Dined 5 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great local pub delicious locally sourced food
Friendly staff

MB
London
2 reviews
Dined on 13 October 2019
Overall 4food 5service 3ambience 3

Excellent food! Service a bit slow waited 50 minutes for our main (we didn’t order starters) however it was busy! Our table was in the garden room which we found a bit soulless.

We love this place and will definitely be back!

r
London
15 reviews
Dined on 8 October 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 3

We were welcomed by a log fire warming you on a cold evening. The staff were attentive and informative. The food was excellent and the wine was great value bearing in mind it was from Berry Bros and Rudd. A great evening!

CH
1 review
Dined on 5 October 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

We booked at the last minute and were pleasantly surprised to find a nice table for 2. The place was buzzing, but lots of helpful staff, good service and nice atmosphere. The food was excellent. Since discovering the Dorset Arms, after the recommendation of a friend, we have returned several times and never been disappointed. A proper gastro-pub.

S
London
3 reviews
Dined on 25 September 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

This restaurant has a great ambiance. The service from all of the staff was excellent. They couldn't have been more helpful. Food great as usual a lovely evening overall.

JR
Kent
4 reviews
Dined on 25 September 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

A warm welcome from the moment we stepped in, damp from our walk and accompanied by two muddy dogs. Treated to an impromptu wine tasting to help us decide what would go best with the meal. Really good food, and really good service in an informal traditional English pub atmosphere. Definitely the first of many visits!

C
London
4 reviews
Dined on 20 September 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

Only negative comment is the rather cramped table seating.

DR
Kent
3 reviews
Dined on 17 September 2019
Overall 4food 3service 4ambience 3

Lovely pub, it was just a shame it was so quiet as we were the only ones eating until 2 other gentleman arrived 30 minutes after. The menu was fine however it said Ribeye steak was available but we were told it would be Sirloin which neither of us wanted & we both had the crumble however this was different to the one on the menu on our table.

WS
1 review
Dined on 15 September 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

Enjoyed a nice Sunday lunch with more choice than just regular roasts. Good portions. Very pleasant surroundings and atmosphere. Service was excellent and they even sang happy birthday to my brother-in-law and put a candle in his dessert once they realised it was his birthday. Also provided a cushion for my elderly mother-in-law. Nice touches.

BR
Kent
1 review
Dined on 12 September 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The booking experience was easy and efficient and the confirmation and follow up reminder were very helpful. All the staff were welcoming, friendly and informative as regards choice of drinks and food and coupled with the quality and flavour of the food all of our dinning experience was very pleasant indeed.
We will most certainly be visiting again.

CG
Hertfordshire
4 reviews
Dined on 23 August 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 4

Always great! The food and service first class. Just love it!

AG
1 review
Dined on 18 August 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

Lovely location.
We had the beef roast and the meat was excellent.

SL
1 review
Dined on 2 August 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Superb food at every visit. The steak cote de boeuf was amazing, beautifully cooked and melt in the mouth. The waiting staff are always attentive, but not in-your-face. The menu has a varied selection of wines and food to suit all tastes and prices.

RS
East Sussex
1 review
Dined on 21 July 2019
Overall 4food 3service 4ambience 3

Good value food.went for sunday lunch.found service and atmosphere pleasant. Food hot and good portions.
When ordering the sweet i chose the apricot and apple crumble .although the main part of the crumble was piping hot.i found the crumble which was laid on the top did not appear cooked and was exceptionally hard and crunchy. It was more like groutons than crumble..so much so that i broke a tooth.
Overall experience was good and pleasant and nice location.

W
Kent
1 review
Dined on 13 July 2019
Overall 2food 3service 1ambience 1

The food is always good however the service has become quite poor in recent months, the staff don’t seem to understand that this is a pub and when you go to a pub you want good food but also drinks, looking down at your feet and leaving tables short of drinks for 20 minutes or more is not a great experience , at one point I had to remind them that we had ordered but the bar staff hadn’t poured them !

KW
1 review
Dined on 27 June 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent venue, food and service great and we didn't feel 'rushed'. Thank you for a great lunchtime experience!

TH
East Sussex
2 reviews
Dined on 23 June 2019
Overall 2food 1service 2ambience 2

This is the third time we have eaten at The Dorset Arms and whilst we have been very pleased in the past this was the poorest meal we have had. The pasta starter was bland and the rhubarb fool did not taste of rhubarb. Two of our guests ordered the brownie but the difference in size was extreme which shows a lack of detail and control in the kitchen.

The pork was carved very thickly and was dry. Hopefully they can get back on track soon

HM
1 review
Dined on 16 June 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Good staff and venue great. Shame about the 12.5% ‘optional’ service charge. I would rather decide how much I would like to tip!

K
Surrey
5 reviews
Dined on 7 June 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Excellent food from a well-designed menu, and although the pub was busy the service was quick, efficient and friendly.

OT
London
2 reviews
Dined on 2 June 2019
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 5

Food fair but some dishes, especially the starters and deserts far too pricey-eg, £10.50 for three small cheese portions. Lovely garden and good service.

PC
London
3 reviews
Dined on 29 May 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I was the guest on this occasion but I very much enjoyed the food, wine and gin and tonic. My host was equally impressed.

s
Kent
4 reviews
Dined on 19 May 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Delicious food and friendly, efficient service from the young staff

MI
London
1 review
Dined on 18 May 2019
Overall 3food 4service 1ambience 4

Service was extremely slow. had to wait 30 mins for a drink. Food as always very good.

PJ
1 review
Dined on 7 May 2019
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 3

We both had really good meals and the waiting staff were very helpful and attentive. We have dined here many times, both lunchtime and evening meals, and have always enjoyed the food whether it be in the bar or the restaurant. The restaurant is a little more crammed I feel than it used to be and if it had been full (we ate fairly early evening) I would probably have had to move my chair to let people by to tables beyond where I was sitting.

C
Seattle
3 reviews
Dined on 5 May 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

The Dorset Arms is a local for me and it is lovely to have such a reliably good pub/ restaurant within walking distance whether for a quiet supper or summer lunch in the garden. Always good.

TP
London
2 reviews
Dined on 5 May 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The all round experience was very enjoyable and very satisfying. We always recommend!

CG
Hertfordshire
4 reviews
Dined on 4 May 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The Dorset Arms is the best pub/restaurant in the Tunbridge Wells area. It has been a great meeting place for years and the staff and the chef are simply the best!!

m
London
8 reviews
Dined on 27 April 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 3

Superb food and a gorgeous pub!

PC
Kent
2 reviews
Dined on 25 April 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

We dine there often and it’s always a pleasurable experience.

LW
1 review
Dined on 19 April 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Lovely food, good service despite it being very busy, staff attentive and friendly.

AP
London
1 review
Dined on 7 April 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

A very good Sunday lunch, over which we were not hurried at all, despite the restaurant being very busy. we were not on the most comfortable of tables - it was a small table for two with a large central pillar, at which we could only sit on adjacent sides because of its position, and it was impossible for both of us to sit squarely onto the table with our legs underneath.

ZS
1 review
Dined on 6 April 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Wonderful food & a lovely atmosphere – informal but smart, with attentive service

JB
1 review
Dined on 31 March 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Lovely setting in a quaint but popular country pub. Delicious food with a varied menu offering hearty meals, lighter options and the knowledge that lots of effort has gone in to source local ingredients.

SD
London
1 review
Dined on 31 March 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 3

A very nice lunch, good food and service I would definitely recommend the Dorset Arms

S
London
2 reviews
Dined on 22 March 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

Cosy pub with excellent menu. Both beer and wine were good, service timely and friendly staff - all the courses came well presented, quality ingredients and and well cooked.
We stayed overnight in the old schoolhouse - comfy beds and lots of hot water!
Planning to visit again to try other dishes on the menu - thanks for a great experience

RC
East Sussex
1 review
Dined on 22 March 2019
Overall 4food 3service 5ambience 4

Always a good meal, service is great and made to feel very welcome. Food was a mixed bag, some very good, some not quite as good as usual (the french fries were a bit soggy - usually a banker, the stuffed chicken was a tad dry). Scotch Egg, Flat Iron chicken all great. Will be returning as nearly always 4 or 5 stars.

OT
Kent
28 reviews
Dined on 16 March 2019
Overall 3food 3service 2ambience 4

1 hr + for meal to arrive
Small portions quiet ambience

S
London
4 reviews
Dined on 16 March 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

A fantastic lunch. Service was excellent and the food was fabulous. Would highly recommend.