The Leicester Arms Hotel
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We are nestled in the wonderful village of Penshurst a stone throw away from the historical Penshurst Place. Our restaurant specializes in European cuisine using locally sourced products.
Excellent food well presented by attentive and friendly staff.
We have eaten better at the Leicester. Over-cooked burger, cold steak in sandwich, rather sloppy crayfish salad, and not inexpensive.
4 of us had a lovely Sunday lunch here a few days ago, the restaurant is at the back of the hotel and is very light and airy (views over the countryside if you look further than the car park!). We headed straight for mains - roast beef, slow cooked pork belly and chicken ballotine. All were very good, I had a lovely mash with my chicken and the two that had beef had good roasties and a crisp Yorkshire (although the waitress said the meat would come medium rare, it actually came just pink but they were happy with this anyway, especially as it tasted so delicious). Desserts were good as well, I had the chocolate mousse with honeycombe ice cream and shards of honeycombe - it was beautiful, others had sticky toffee pudding and a cheesecake - although the cheesecake did disappoint a little, as it was a long thin strip, which was prettily decorated but lacked flavour and texture. We would certainly go again.
We had poor service the last time we went here but decided to give it another go and it was even worse. We waited ages for our starter then well over an hour for our main course. The manager gave us our meal for free but sadly after having had 2 terrible experiences we won't be back. The quality of the food didn't make up for the unacceptable waiting. All in all pretty awful. Such a shame as the location is lovely.
We ate starters of mackerel pate and red pepper soup. Our mains were a rare fillet steak which was perfectly cooked, a confit duck which was delicious and a medium rare lamb dish. All three meals were beautifully presented. This restaurant was a true find. Our only regret is that we didn't have room for pudding. We will return.
Had Sunday lunch here after a country walk. The food was good on the whole, but the serving staff were young and somewhat inattentive. Their worst failing was bringing me pork belly when I had ordered pork loin. When I pointed this out, they said the pork loin had run out. They should have told me this instead of bringing a substitute without any explanation. We also found the pop music a bit too loud. It seemed chosen more to suit the staff's taste than the customers, who were older. This is a failing in many restaurants.
We enjoyed another great meal on Bank Holiday Monday. My only complaint was that the staff weren't as on the ball as the previous times I'd visited. The manager was very busy making sure we received great service, but his staff let him down on this occasion. It won't stop us coming back though as the food was amazing.
We ate here on Bank Holiday Monday lunchtime. The table had been booked for sometime. Unfortunately we had to wait well over an hour for our starters - there seemed to be a communication problem and customers were being served completely out of turn. They also ran out of the desert that we wanted so we got the bill and left. The pub was very busy because of the nearby craft fair, plus we were told they were short staffed. We gave them feedback on the service which they agreed was poor. The staff are young and inexperienced - the management do not seem to pick up on this - other reviews I have subsequently read say the same thing.
We booked a table for four at 2.30 last Sunday. When we arrived the staff just stared at the screen looking gormless. Then they asked us to have a drink in the bar so clearly there was no table. Half an hour later we were shown to our table. It was very busy and there were clearly not enough staff. The waitress took our order for four roasts, 10 minutes later we were informed there was no beef. We changed our order and then waited 40 minutes for our COLD food to arrive. Couldn't be bothered to send it back, we were all famished by the time it arrived and didn't want to wait again. When we asked for our bill we were given someone else's drinks bill of £19.00. We obviously returned the bill and pointed out the mistake. Incidentally, we heard other tables complaining too. The biggest problem that I could see was that no-one seemed to be in charge. Chaos.
We had a very enjoyable meal here. Both the service and food were very good and the restaurant was well placed after visiting Penshurst Place with a nice ambience.
I live in one of the neighbouring villages to Penshurst so come to the Leicester Arms quite often. It's a lovely old pub, full of character and history that has been refurbished sympathetically. The staff are always warm and welcoming and the seasonal menu features local produce, which is prepared and presented beautifully (and I would say to restaurant quality). The Leicester Arms is definitely one of my most favourite country pubs.
We always enjoy going to the Leicester Arms as the food is tasty and well presented and it is local for us, too! The bar area is quite traditional and the restaurant pleasantly decorated. It is a large area, however, so takes quite a few people to create a good atmosphere. The gardens and terrace, leading down to the river are a very nice feature now. The staff are usually quite willing but sometimes not very able - perhaps a little more training would be helpful!
What a lovely place......staff are friendly and the food is fantastic. Really cosy feel to the place - would definitely recommend.
I took my 88 year old father for Sunday lunch which meant arriving at 12.20 as he likes to eat early. So I was disappointed that as we were the first people to enter the large dining area we were offered a very poor table tucked away round a corner, out of sight out of mind. My complaint was ignored.
We both had the same food, potted shrimps which were perfectly good, and then roast beef. There was nothing wrong with the beef course in terms of the quality of the cooking but the problem was simply the small amount on my plate.
My father enjoyed his meal which was the most important aim of the lunch but he is elderly and does not eat much these days. Unfortunately I had to say to the staff that they had broken the first rule of catering which is never let your customer leave hungry. Particularly the paying customer. Over £30 a head for two courses, one glass of wine, no dessert or coffee is expensive when you leave hungry. The Leicester Arms is an attractive building in a lovely town. Just eat before you go and you will have a better time.
We had a delicious Sunday lunch at The Leicester Arms. The food was really good, and the service impeccable
The Leicester Arms is an excellent place to eat. Outstanding food, excellent service and a wonderful atmosphere. Thoroughly recommend for any occasion but particularly for the Sunday roasts! My wife and I had our Wedding Breakfast there last year which was managed impeccably by the wonderful George, for whom nothing was too much trouble. I recommend you visit very soon, you won't be disappointed!
Booked lunch for Valentines Day - have eaten here before and had good experience but this occasion was a little disappointing. Our table position wasn't great, one tucked in a corner and me stuck out very close to the service area. Not very romantic! The range of options was limited if you're not into game food and so I ended up having the bizarre option 'Cheese and pickle sandwich and roast potatoes'. Sure it was nice but 9 quid for a sandwich and 3 potatoes! Desserts were good and service was fine, it was just all, well a little underwhelming on a special day.
After a long dog walk around Penshurst, we always book a table at the Leicester Arms. The food is fantastic- the sea bass with saffron risotto was especially good. The service and friendliness of the staff is consistently great- they always make a lot of fuss of the dog too and nothing is too much trouble. We had to leave earlier than expected, due to the dog being poorly and missed out on the chocolate and salted caramel tart. We will definitely be back again.
I really wanted to love The Leicester Arms, it's a cosy, fires burning, English Pub, perfect for a Sunday afternoon visit after a walk around Penshurst.
The food was fabulous, I rarely like a pub roast, never as good as home cooked but the roast beef and trimmings were faultless BUT being served by stroppy moody teenagers completely spoilt the experience. Our table of 8 was shoved in a corner and 40 minutes later we still hadn't been asked what we'd like to drink let alone view a menu. It was such a shame because it ticked all the other boxes. Leicester Arms sort your young staff out and it's a winner.
Booked a table for three at this restaurant on Boxing day. It was a last minute booking and I had never been before.
It was busy and the service was a little slow but having said that when the food arrived it was first class.
Top Chef who was let down a little by the service.
We will definitely be back !!!!!!
Restaurant warm and inviting. Staff demonstrated a sound knowledge of the food and wine. Both delicious and well presented. Good value for money. The evening all perfect.
We were a group of four adults lunching on a Sunday afternoon. I was bit worried that it would be full of families with small children (mine are all grown up!) There were a number of families in the restaurant but this did not cause us any problems. The food was amazing and the restaurant had lovey buzz all afternoon. Our waitress in particular was very professional, knowledgeable and patient. She came over five times to ask if we wanted dessert (we were taking a VERY long time) and in the end we suggested we called her over if we wanted one!
I would definitely recommend this fantastic restaurant.
Stumbled across this through open table app when at a loose end and glad we did - made very welcome and the wedding party At the same time did not affect our experience - definitely going back - food great and Harvey's well kept
Our waiter was friendly and helpful; the quality of the food continues to improve and I was particularly impressed by the range of main courses on offer. Overall a most enjoyable lunch
We frequently eat at George and Dragon, owned by same group. The setting at Leciester Arms is very nice after the refurbish, but the food is not of the same quality or presentation. Service is hit and miss, and occasionally sloppy, easily rectified by training and supervision which seems to be lacking. Could be so much better if management stayed on top and improved the attention to detail which one expects in this price range.
We went to the Leicester Arms for lunch and were very disappointed. I gather the place has just reopened after renovation, all of which was lovely. The staff were clearly inexperienced and in the process of learning, which was fine, but when we came to order our food, three of the options on the main course menu, had 'sold out'! On a Saturday lunchtime? One of our party ordered a burger which came with 'salsa and aioli'. The burger was very good, but the salsa was a pot of tomato ketchup, and the aioli, plain mayonnaise. We sat and watched one of the waitresses filling pots of 'salsa' from a catering size pack of tomato sauce! We also ordered 'fish and chips' - the fish not being specified, so we asked the waitress, who said she didn't know what type of fish it was, but didn't go and ask the chef. The fish was coated in batter as expected, but was very,very greasy and unappealing.
We felt that the place has huge potential, from its lovely position and well thought out interior, and maybe our experience was just down to teething problems, but the food is not cheap, and there are many other pubs in the area providing better food at similar prices. We hope the Leicester Arms is able to raise its lunchtime game!
We can not fault the food which was very good. Well presented, just the right amount and tasted delicious. Clean plates all round. Our waitress was nice however she appeared to lack experience and made very simple errors. We would go back though as we enjoyed our meal.
Lovely venue with very good food. Add to this a very polite and friendly team of staff
it makes a very pleasent lunch time experience.
Had dinner here on Saturday after a poor experience on my first visit I thought I would give it another try. A lovely setting and nice dining room. Slight delay in delivering menu and taking drinks order but nothing too bad. Drinks came and waiter spilt my beer on the table, he them dripped wine when pouring (not just a little but a lot), he made no attempt to clear up the mess (I eventually did it myself). He then put cap back on red wine bottle (clearly not knowing red wine needs to breathe) . Ordered food, nice choice on menu. Starters came and were very good, nicely presented. Then waited almost an hour for the main to arrive (the restaurant was only about half full). The food was very good but the wait was unacceptable. Waited at least 10 minutes to clear plates after we had finished. After I had paid the waitress asked if everything was ok (far too late by that stage). The evening was summed up by when we were leaving the staff saw us and rather than saying goodbye they turned their back and went into the kitchen. Afraid this is my second bad experience at this place and also the sister restaurant the George and Dragon in Speldhurst is no better. Whoever runs this group needs to get a grip on staff training - it's not difficult.
The Hotel has a nice feel but is chilly. When we sat down for dinner it was clear that they were short staffed as ordering time was slow. The first course was pretty good but not exciting. A second drinks order arrived with flat tonic. And then the main course arrived, for an expensive steak it was rather like cold rubber. More bits of tough un-eatable gristle than anything else. I would like to put it down to a one off but all three steaks where the same. Disapointing.
There was a private party taking place but the staff offered us a table further away from the party room which was fine. There is a really nice atmosphere there these days and it seemed fairly intimate despite being quite a large dining space. The food was very good, too! An enjoyable evening.
The food was absolutely delicious, and beautifully presented. It was hard to choose from the menu because everything sounded so tempting! Large group catered for with ease, with friendly staff.
We ate here on Sunday 15/3 and are regular customers. Firstly, it was lovely to see the place so busy, there was a great atmosphere and the staff managed well. We have always enjoyed the food here but I would say it has improved considerably, when i asked about it I heard the chef had moved from their other pub "The George and Dragon at Speldhurst". I had the Mackerel with blood orange and fennel, a very pretty dish that delivered on flavour, we are going back this Sunday and i hope its on again!
The pub is in a beautiful village. The pub is character filled, fires, good service. The food was good.
Great food, service and surroundings, what more could you want?! Will definitely be visiting again and telling friends to try it.
Good food marred to some extent by slow and confused service in a nearly empty restaurant and a chef with a bad attitude who refused to cook the scotch egg for longer as requested.
This was our 3rd visit since this pub/restaurant reopened under the new management and our first two visits we found the place to be lively and we enjoyed both times. However this third visit was not at all what we expected. The place , for a Friday evening was dead! Only 2 other sets of diners and we were then sat all together in a huge empty room, it would have been more pleasant to have a bit more space between us and maybe at the windows.The staff are pleasant but I did feel since there was obviously no rush on that we were not allowed enough time to sit and look over the menu before being asked to order. The food is pleasant pub food.
However the absolutely worse thing altogether was the horrid loud pop music! May not revisit.
Myself, my husband, son and girl friend enjoyed a lovely Sunday lunch at The Leister Arms.
The food was excellent with a varied choice. The service was friendly and efficient and we were made to feel very welcome.
Would certainly recommend a visit to our friends.
The restaurant and food was lovely however because we booked a late lunch coupled with very few other diners, there was no atmosphere. I would return and go for dinner.
Ten of us (including two small children) descended on the Leicester Arms for Sunday lunch to celebrate a 90th birthday. Food was delicious; service was charming and very accommodating. We were able to order children's meals ahead of the rest to stop them getting fractious. Very relaxed afternoon. Lovely large oval table sat all of us comfortably. Will definitely go back again. All our guests were very complimentary of the setting, ambience and quality of food.
The Leicester Arms Hotel is rated 4 stars by 57 OpenTable diners.