The Poet at Matfield

4.8
555 reviews
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£25 and under
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British
Top tags:
  • Special Occasions
  • Good for Anniversaries
  • Fit for Foodies
We believe that your dining experience with us starts the moment you walk through the door. A friendly greeting from our front of house team, led by co-owner Andy Urbanek and manager Simon Moore.
The Poet offers a vast selection of craft gins, handpicked wines and quirky cocktails. Chef Patron Petrus Madutlela and his team, endeavours to temp our customers with an imaginative array of contemporary British food cooked to order, sourced from the freshest, local produce. Our celebrity chef competed on Masterchef: The Professionals and was Judge of South African TV show "The Ultimate Braai Master."
Dining Style
Casual Elegant
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Cuisines
British, English
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Hours of Operation
Tuesday - Thursday: 12:00 - 14:30, 18:00 - 21:00
Friday: 12:00 - 14:30, 18:00 - 21:30
Sunday: 12:00 - 16:00
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Phone number
01892 722416
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Payment Options
AMEX, MasterCard, Visa
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Dress Code
Smart Casual
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Executive Chef
Petrus Madutlela
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Public Transit
Bus stop The Standings Cross: 267 Hawkhurst, 268
Hawkhurst, 6 Tunbridge Wells
Additional
Bar/Lounge, Beer, BYO Wine, Corkage Fee, Entertainment, Fireplace, Full Bar, Private Room, Wine
What 555 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.8based on recent ratings
4.8
food
4.8
service
4.6
ambience
4.5
value
Noise · Quiet
98% of people would recommend it to a friend
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W
London
12 reviews
Dined 2 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Amazing food, service, drink, ambience , as usual

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VC
Kent
1 review
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Excellent food and wine and friendly and efficient service. Made to feel very welcome. We shall be going again.

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SW
London
1 review
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We had a fantastic first meal at the Poet on Saturday lunchtime, and it certainly wont be the last. My wife and I were celebrating our 38th wedding Anniversary, and the staff and Chef made this a special occasion indeed. The food was wonderful, especially my Wild Mushroom Veloute, and Confit duck, chosen from the set menu, which was superb value. Other highlights included the Hake and Lamb. All in all a special place and a real find!

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RB
Kent
1 review
Dined 5 days ago
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

The menu is based on seasonal food. We ate here in the summer and I can honestly say it was the best meal I have eaten. Ww returned for a birthday celebration in the winter and although the food was very good, it was not to the exceptional standard we previously had. The staff are all very professional and warm and friendly. The ambiance is great and the value good.

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CD
Kent
4 reviews
Dined 5 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

Excellent all round except we were booked in twice- both done within 3 minutes so must be your system. Received phone call while sitting a table asking why we are late!

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OT
London
8 reviews
Dined on 4 December 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We have eaten here on several occasions, it was our wedding anniversary this week and were very spoiled, the welcome, food, atmosphere were as ever faultless, why would anybody wish to dine in London when we have the Poet?

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OT
Greensboro
1 review
Dined on 2 December 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Loved the bbq fish app. Delish!!!

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D
London
1 review
Dined on 1 December 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Great night. Food super, inspirational and simply very very tasty. Waiters very nice and fun without being intrusive. Met the head chef which was a really nice experience and was able to complement him on his dishes.
Very ususual quince suffle for desert- if you’re a foodie this is the place to go!

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LH
1 review
Dined on 1 December 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Beautiful food as always. Perfect for a special occasion.

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m
Kent
8 reviews
Dined on 30 November 2018
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 4

This was my third visit and although it's quite a long taxi ride it's worth it. Love the gin range and there is a good range of wines. The food as usual was excellent and they were more than happy to advise one of my group to the the gluten free options - which were many. Staff very attentive. Would definitely return.

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B
Kent
2 reviews
Dined on 30 November 2018
Overall 4food 3service 4ambience 4

We enjoyed our early evening meal at the Poet but found it a bit expensive.
We did not have starter and only had one drink each. Came to just under a £100 for two. . This is a bit more ,than what we usually pay if we go out for a meal. The service was excellent , lovely atmosphere. Lovely place to eat for a special occasion.

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KB
1 review
Dined on 29 November 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We had our first visit to this local gem recently, and had such a great experience we've booked to return soon

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OT
Kent
1 review
Dined on 25 November 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Went for Sunday Lunch for our anniversary. The perfect dining experience, beautiful food with attentive (not OTT) staff.

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s
Kent
6 reviews
Dined on 24 November 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I had heard good things and have been finding it difficult to find anywhere a bit ‘special’.The Poet does not disappoint. Food,service and ambiance all great. All 4 of us rated all food highly.
Not cheap but could be rated as good value . Could make it cheaper if more steady on the wine!!
Will definitely return.

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C
London
39 reviews
Dined on 24 November 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Andy (front of house), Petrus (chef) and the team did a fantastic job again. The place was fully booked as always on a Saturday evening (and also typically nowadays for most of the week). We hadn't been in for about 4 months because of holidays and because they had been booked out so it was good to get a table again! We are regulars and without asking were put in our favourite bay window table, 4 of us "en famille".

A friendly and efficient welcome as ever. Great cocktails to start - top quality Vesper Martinis, a Basil Smash which was lovely and another that escapes me for the moment - also very good.

Great selection of starters and mains. Difficult to choose, but two of us went for the Tuna Tataki - fabulous - and 2 for the carpaccio with lobster and truffled mayonnaise - absolutely delicious and very creative and well thought-through.

Two for venison main course which was perfectly cooked rare, one for a barbary duck breast and I had Brill with cockles in a seafood beurre blanc sauce - fantastic. They have sorted out their previous slight over-salting/over-reduction tendency for jus & sauces and all dishes were perfectly seasoned. Very nice sides of gratin dauphinois and honey glazed carrots.

I had a very good (and generous) plate of cheese to finish with a Basil Smash (good choice) and a few (very good) espresso martinis for my girls.

Good Picpoul de Pinet and a lovely Rosso di Montepulciano with the food.

Super service throughout both from the very professional senior staff and some new but well-trained juniors.

Both Andy and Petrus came for an enjoyable chat separately afterwards. What lovely guys

What a great place! Not particularly cheap but good value. The whole experience is really worth it and good
staff and top quality fresh and locally sourced ingredients like this cost serious money!

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RB
Kent
2 reviews
Dined on 23 November 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Sophisticated restaurant in an historic village pub with imaginative cooking to a very high standard, smooth service, excellent wines and a lovely ambience. Enormous selection of craft gins but without my favourite old brands.

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F
London
11 reviews
Dined on 23 November 2018
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

Nice food and lovely pub, quite expensive.

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MO
London
1 review
Dined on 21 November 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Once again we had a wonderful evening at The Poet. The ambiance is welcoming and friendly and the food truly superb. A great bar too with an amazing selection of unusual gins and a comprehensive wine list. We ate from the tasting menu but there are lots of options. You must book to ensure a table and you will not be disappointed!

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U
London
2 reviews
Dined on 17 November 2018
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

Very good all around unless you are looking for something other than fancy food in a trad pub context.

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JB
Kent
4 reviews
Dined on 16 November 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Lovely old pub and fantastic food. Good atmosphere and staff very attentive. Lovely for special occasions.

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K
Kent
2 reviews
Dined on 14 November 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Yet again a wonderful meal. We had the tasting menu and all thoughts it was delicious.

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MS
Brighton
4 reviews
Dined on 14 November 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Had a table for 4 for lunch when 2 of us had 3 courses and 2 had 2 courses. The starters were splendid and just the right amount. Main courses were diverse ranging from pork to fish and were all very well presented, the recipients commenting most favourably. I had sea bass which was exceptional. Unusual for me I had a pudding and excellent it was too. All in all the food was first class, as was the ambience and the service - not to mention value for money. Will definitely be returning.

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PA
Kent
1 review
Dined on 13 November 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Always a great night out of food & drink. Good atmosphere, great food, great attentive service, great selection of gins for gin lovers.

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P
Kent
1 review
Dined on 11 November 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

High quality cooking very well presented, with a well chosen wine list. Excellent front of house and waiting team. Never disappoints, always my go to place when I want to spoil myself.

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B
Chicago
30 reviews
Dined on 11 November 2018
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

This is a lovely restaurant, full of character with warm, cosy character.
The food is excellent as is the wine list.
Staff helpful and attentive, very welcoming.
With over 70 varieties of gin from which to choose, mine was garnished with juniper berries.
A real treat.
I have visited twice and expect to be a regular.
Highly recommended.
Brian

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L
London
3 reviews
Dined on 10 November 2018
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

Definitely a cut above even a gastro pub, with prices to match but well worth it particularly for a special occasion. Food and service excellent, lovely ambience in traditional country pub. Need to book in advance. Have also heard great reports about summer Sunday lunch BBQ but not yet got in.

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CW
London
4 reviews
Dined on 9 November 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Lovely food and excellent friendly service, great place for a relaxed 'treat' dinner. Wine list good value compared to many others too.

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BT
London
2 reviews
Dined on 9 November 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

A very good meal and an enjoyable evening.the best restaurant in the area

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LS
Kent
1 review
Dined on 9 November 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 3

Absolutely excellent. 2nd visit. Faultless in all respects and without bragging we have eaten in some of the finest restaurants worldwide.
The food at The Poet is outstanding.

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TG
London
11 reviews
Dined on 4 November 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

A little bit pricey for just a Sunday lunch but absolutely brilliant food. So be great for a special occasion.

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JP
Brighton
1 review
Dined on 4 November 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I love the Poet. Would totally recommend for a special occasion. It was my father-in-laws 70th Birthday and he had a fabulous time.

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EB
Kent
1 review
Dined on 3 November 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Superb all round dining experience. Outstanding food. Fantastic service. Loved this place. Will be back.

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J
London
16 reviews
Dined on 2 November 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Excellent food and service will definitely return as soon as possible.

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RM
Kent
1 review
Dined on 1 November 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great country pub, 10/10 tasting menu and great service

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MA
1 review
Dined on 31 October 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Wonderful service with absolutely fantastic food all in a great atmosphere

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r
Kent
3 reviews
Dined on 31 October 2018
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 4

excellent lunchtime menu, it was so varied and the restaurant accommodated 3 of the diners as we had 2 starters each, which satisfied all concerned, polite and friendly service although it was necessary to move to another table as the leg room was not sufficient for one of us, that did not prove a problem and another table was offered without delay. Good choice of wines to go with each dish.

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DT
London
1 review
Dined on 28 October 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Sunday Lunch was outstanding 4 people served at the same time all piping hot - friendly efficient accommodating and knowledgeable staff - Delicious meal

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AN
Kent
2 reviews
Dined on 27 October 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Wonderful autumn day lunch at The Poet of Matfield with the wonderful Chef Petrus Madutlela. There is quite a few menus to choose from and always difficult to decide. Each course was new, exciting and so tasteful. The welcome and ambience at The Poet of Matfield is wonderful. Great attentive waiters and lovely atmosphere. Always worth the drive from South West London. The fish and chips and trout main dishes were excellent. We hope to return soon again for the Yorkshire pudding which had a hint of ginger and served with ice-cream.

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a
London
9 reviews
Dined on 26 October 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Always a great meal at The Poet, still convinced its the best food in the Tunbridge Wells area.

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EC
Kent
1 review
Dined on 26 October 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The food and atmosphere at the Poet was really special. I had a delicious Heritage tomato starter followed by Stone bass main course and the flavours were wonderful - fish cooked to perfection- and portion sizes perfect. I was driving so not able to experience all the wines on that offer but I was offered a range of interesting non-alcoholic options, and my husband enjoyed the wine very much. We were looked after by quite a few members of staff but they were all very professional yet welcoming and friendly. Can’t wait to go back!

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