The Bottle House Inn
“Historic pub off the beaten track” - AA Inspector
During 1492, the year Columbus landed in America, the uniquely named Bottle House was being built as an estate farmhouse, which helps to put its great age in context. Down a country lane, it wasn’t until 1806 that it was granted a licence to sell ale and cider, later also becoming a shop, a farrier’s and a cobbler’s. In 1938 a refurbishment exposed hundreds of old bottles, hence the name. Later improvements have included sandblasting ancient oak beams back to their natural colour, exposing brickwork and painting walls in neutral shades. At the copper-topped bar counter there’s a contingent of beers from Kentish breweries Larkins, Tonbridge, Westerham and Whitstable, with Sussex-brewed Weltons joining the line-up, as well as 19 wines by the glass. The menus in the stylish dining room capitalise on the abundant supply of local produce, so the chef’s recommendations change accordingly. Kick things off with beetroot tarte Tatin with a goats’ cheese, apple and watercress salad, before moving on to Larkins beer-battered cod with chunky chips and homemade tartare sauce. Bottle House cheesecake might come with summer berries and ice cream. When the weather’s favourable, there’s a good-sized patio area with umbrellas.
- Children welcome
- Children's portions
- Free Wifi
- Closed: 2
Also in the area
About the area
The White Cliffs of Dover are an English icon – the epitome of our island heritage and sense of nationhood. They also mark the point where the Kent Downs AONB, that great arc of chalk downland stretching from the Surrey Hills and sometimes known as ‘the Garden of England’, finally reaches the sea. This is a well-ordered and settled landscape, where chalk and greensand escarpments look down into the wooded Weald to the south.
Many historic parklands, including Knole Park and Sir Winston Churchill’s red-brick former home at Chartwell, are also worth visiting. Attractive settlements such as Charing, site of Archbishop Cranmer’s Tudor palace, and Chilham, with its magnificent half-timbered buildings and 17th-century castle built on a Norman site, can be found on the Pilgrim’s Way, the traditional route for Canterbury-bound pilgrims in the Middle Ages.
In the nature reserves, such as the traditionally coppiced woodlands of Denge Wood and Earley Wood, and the ancient fine chalk woodland of Yockletts Bank high on the North Downs near Ashford, it is still possible to experience the atmosphere of wilderness that must have been felt by the earliest travellers along this ancient ridgeway.
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