The Secret Garden

4.4
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716 reviews
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£25 and under
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British
Top tags:
  • High Tea
  • Lunch
  • Special Occasions
We are an award winning restaurant set in an elegant converted 19th century Coach Building. We use seasonal fresh produce sourced from Kent and our own Victorian kitchen Garden. We offer Brunch, Light lunch, Set Lunch menu, Afternoon Teas, Cream Teas, Coffee & Cake, Interactive Theatre Dinner, Feasting Nights and Pudding Nights. Dine Alfresco on our terrace or in our beautiful gardens. Private Dining also available

Dine al fresco on the South-facing terrace overlooking the tranquil walled gardens, enjoy the cobbled courtyard and shops, or relax in the warm cosy candelit restaurant.

Guests are welcome to explore the kitchen & Flower gardens.

We are recognised for our excellent food and warm friendly atmosphere, our menus change daily due to seasonal Produce. All food is Home Made, and if not grown sourced from Local Farmers and Producers. If not coming for Brunch, Lunch or Cream Tea, how about Afternoon tea or Pudding Night.
What 716 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.4based on recent ratings
4.4
Food
4.4
Service
4.4
Ambience
4.1
Value
Noise · Moderate
90% of people would recommend it to a friend
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MK
Kent
5 reviews
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

Lovely day from start to finish. Everything presented beautifully. Waiter was very friendly and attentive. Would recommend and return

MG
1 review
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

Such a lovely venue with great food and really friendly efficient service. Thank you

N
1 review
Dined on 5 September 2019
Overall 3Food 4Service 4Ambience 2

There was a distinct shortage of staff, although the 2 we saw were very pleasant.
We opted to eat inside. It was decorated very pleasantly. The furniture however, I assume was meant to be shabby chic, but I am afraid it was more shabby than chic. I would have expected at least a linen table cloth considering the price being charged. Our table was sticky and wobbly and I was surprised to see that the crockery and cutlery was already laid up on the tables allowing no protection agains't flies and wasps. The Traditional Afternoon Tea was very nice and fresh and everything was described to us in great detail. We were unable to finish everything and were supplied with take away boxes.
The Gardens and surroundings were very pleasant.

JB
Kent
1 review
Dined on 4 September 2019
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

Lovely, tasty afternoon tea served in a beautiful, peaceful setting.

OT
Kent
1 review
Dined on 4 September 2019
Overall 5Food 5Service 4Ambience 4

It was so lovely to go back to my wedding venue, The Secret Garden with two friends for a delicious afternoon tea. Really love it and it’s truly the best food you will ever eat.

OT
1 review
Dined on 26 August 2019
Overall 4Food 5Service 5Ambience 4

Afternoon Tea with my daughter. Everything was perfect except from the wasps. Sat the courtyard side and it may have helped if wasps catchers were put this side as I noticed they were on the garden side. Other than that it was perfect x

E
Kent
1 review
Dined on 26 August 2019
Overall 4Food 4Service 3Ambience 4

Had afternoon tea, food was lovely, lots of sweet could have done with some more savoury. We sat outside in the sun looking over the garden which was just gorgeous. Service was ok however could have been more attentive, staff could have come outside a bit more regularly. Generally a really good experience, with some very small changes it could have been perfect. Happy to recommend!

OT
Kent
3 reviews
Dined on 26 August 2019
Overall 4Food 4Service 3Ambience 4

Everything was lovely but we found the service to be quite slow although they did apologise for this and staff were lovely .

JN
Kent
1 review
Dined on 21 August 2019
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

Absolutely the best place to have lunch. Always happy to see you, always happy to please you. A great favourite of mine.

OT
Kent
1 review
Dined on 20 August 2019
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

On arrival was greeted my staff very welcoming and friendly shown to table, other drinks as soon as we sat waited no time at all for are afternoon tea which was amazing staff were on hand all the time if we needed anything even took some photos for us couldnt fault, well except the wasps but then nothing the staff can do about them will definitely be returning xx

a
1 review
Dined on 18 August 2019
Overall 3Food 4Service 3Ambience 5

A group of 5 of us regularly go for afternoon tea and the secret garden was one to try. We were so excited because of all the different afternoon teas available and we have to say they were lovely and different to the bog standard teas you can get everywhere. We had 2 savoury, 1 chocolate and 1 traditional and 1 traditional pescatarian. Only thing is they didn't do a pescatarian because I was told that there were things I could eat off of them anyway. Wasn't happy with this, also seeing as the meats were mixed on the stands with the fish. Didn't want to ruin things for everybody so we just enjoyed what we could. The staff were rather relaxed, being a Sunday and we had to go the bar a few times to get tea etc. But overall it was lovely. We paid the bill and left, only once home we realised we had been overcharged. I messaged on facebook and it took 3 days to the resolve the problem and we are now waiting 3-5 days for the refund. Glad it got resolved, but had it been me, I would have apologised profusely.

LR
London
1 review
Dined on 18 August 2019
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

Lovely surroundings to sit and relax. Lovely afternoon tea well worth the money. The staff are polite and attentive.

KA
1 review
Dined on 15 August 2019
Overall 4Food 4Service 5Ambience 4

Beautiful location, great service, afternoon tea was traditional, very nice, but nothing outstanding. Finger sandwiches a bit dry on the ends and lots of wasps

m
London
3 reviews
Dined on 1 August 2019
Overall 4Food 5Service 5Ambience 3

Delicious afternoon tea served by great staff in beautiful surroundings. Only fly in the ointment was quite a few militant wasps when attempting to eat outside, moved inside as a result. We were made aware of the wasps outside, which they are resolving, on arrival. Shame though as it was so beautiful outside.

GB
Kent
1 review
Dined on 30 July 2019
Overall 4Food 4Service 5Ambience 5

Staff is friendly and professional, they even given me a doggy bag to bring the rest of my afternoon tea with me :)

AS
1 review
Dined on 26 July 2019
Overall 2Food 4Service 2Ambience 2

After waiting a very long time to be seated we were shown to our table and pretty much left to our own devices! There were at least 3 empty tables around us waiting to be cleared. Our food was good but too expensive for what it was, if the ambience and service were better then the price would have been fine.

JA
1 review
Dined on 25 July 2019
Overall 2Food 4Service 1Ambience 2

We attended a business lunch for 5 which had been booked for sometime. The restaurant was very hot with no fans or windows open next to our table.
Service was slow and we had to remind staff for cutlery and mayonnaise and water
There were children running around unsupervised
Food was very good
We have been before and had a much nicer experience but on this occasion it was lacking quality.

n
Kent
7 reviews
Dined on 14 July 2019
Overall 4Food 5Service 1Ambience 4

Lovely food but disappointed in the way we were treated by the staff. A very nice male waiter seated us at the rather dirty table but after that we were served by four different waiters and I had to ask to have the table wiped. It would have been better if the same waiter could have served us throughout.

AH
1 review
Dined on 14 July 2019
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

Been here several times for Afternoon Tea. Great service and great food every single time. The staff are really friendly and the setting is beautiful. Highly recommend and great value for money

JN
Kent
2 reviews
Dined on 7 July 2019
Overall 4Food 3Service 4Ambience 4

The main man was just as charming and professional as last time we visited and is the perfect host; one of the main reasons for visiting again. Food was good but not as good as it has been but still good enough. Venue is a wonderful, serene haven and faultless but a wedding party sitting alongside us were a little loud and dented the usual peace and tranquillity on the terrace. Still a favourite, nevertheless and we’ll be back.

AW
Kent
1 review
Dined on 3 July 2019
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

We spent an delightful afternoon at the Secret Garden having Afternoon Tea. The food was delicious and the service good.

L
London
8 reviews
Dined on 3 July 2019
Overall 3Food 3Service 3Ambience 4

It’s a very pretty place to visit and I can see why it’s popular. The service from our waiter was attentive. I ordered orange juice and he told me “apple is better” so I went with his recommendation and was disappointed. It was not fresh apple juice and tasted watered down. He did the same with our brunch, we were recommended the mushrooms with eggs and chorizo and we were disappointed there too. The eggs were rock hard from being over baked and the dish, sickly. It stated that it was served with bread. Which was a toasted garlic bread (this should have been disclosed). My mum had the full breakfast. The ingredients used are undoubtedly high quality, but fell short. There was pulled pork on the plate which was advertised as sausages. No toast given, which would be nice for the price and no meal check. We were not offered anything further after our plates were cleared and I had to go inside to pay.

The coffee was really disappointing. Either the quality of the beans are poor or the coffee machine isn’t regularly cleaned.

Other members of staff (all male) were not as friendly as our server and two were arguing at the till as we were leaving which is unprofessional. I am glad we went as the setting is very pretty but we would not rush back.

A
1 review
Dined on 26 June 2019
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

The place is lovely inside and outside on the terrace too, very pretty. Delicious fresh food and friendly, helpful people.

SL
Kent
1 review
Dined on 26 June 2019
Overall 4Food 5Service 4Ambience 4

My husband, daughter & I enjoyed our wedding anniversary lunch on Wednesday very much.
We were well looked after by the friendly, efficient staff. Food was very tasty and it was great to see quite a few couples enjoying afternoon teas, sitting outside on the terrace overlooking the delightful garden.
We shall be back very soon to experience an afternoon tea.

T
Kent
2 reviews
Dined on 24 June 2019
Overall 5Food 4Service 4Ambience 5

Lovely restaurant; beautiful garden, quality food, pleasant staff.

c
Kent
3 reviews
Dined on 24 June 2019
Overall 3Food 3Service 2Ambience 2

We had a table booked for lunch at 1pm which is when we arrived. I was asked “ what was I there for” lunch! We sat down and was shown a very dreary menu. Two of us opted for sweet potato soup which actually was carrot and potato. We waited at least 15-20 minutes for that and it was barely warm. The next course was allegedly red mullet but the very small portion was so over cooked it was tasteless. Again this food was only warm. Two others went for chicken which was the only alternative on the menu. My husband said that his was only warm and he had no idea what the white cream like sauce was supposed to be. We waited about 20 minutes for the main courses to be served. Dessert ! The waiter got confused by four desserts so again after a very long wait only bought three. We had to wait again for another pudding to be cooked. All in all it was not good. The service is appalling and the wait for food is not acceptable. There was only one other table having lunch and they were just two people. It’s not as if the chef was rushed off his feet with a full restaurant. Three other tables were having afternoon tea. Will I return? If I do not for a good while as things need to improve. I’ve spoken to other people who have also recently been there and their experience was the same.

OT
1 review
Dined on 22 June 2019
Overall 4Food 5Service 3Ambience 4

I visited The Secret Garden with my husband and daughter (age 3) for afternoon tea. We booked in advance and had fairly high expectations. It's a bit above our usually price range but we thought we'd treat ourselves. The food was lovely. It was a bit too sweet for me overall (not something I say often!). Some more savoury elements would have been good but that's personal taste.
I had a few issues with the service. On arrival we were told to wait, which is fine but we stood by the counter for 5 mins or so with 4 members if staff milling about at the bar. We felt a bit silly standing there. When we were seated the chair I sat on had a broken arm (i swapped the chairs over myself and told a member of staff who was not overly interested). Despite booking we waited 40 minutes for our food. I was starting to get annoyed and was considering going to tell them not to bother when it finally arrived. The next table got theirs pretty quickly so maybe it was just bad luck on our part.
Overall... The service put me off a bit but the food was lovely. Particularly the fudge!

LW
Kent
1 review
Dined on 18 June 2019
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

Took Australian friends and family and had a brilliant day. Would certainly recommend 😂

OT
1 review
Dined on 16 June 2019
Overall 4Food 3Service 4Ambience 4

6 of us came for a Father’s Day afternoon tea and it was wonderful, very family friendly stuff and the garden was beautiful,
Lovely sandwiches, I could have done with one or two more of them, lots of yummy cakes too.
I have been once before for lunch and that was very yummy too

K
London
1 review
Dined on 14 June 2019
Overall 4Food 5Service 4Ambience 5

A beautiful location and delicious afternoon tea. Nice to be given cardboard boxes to take home what we couldn't finish. Was excellent next day too!

4
London
1 review
Dined on 8 June 2019
Overall 3Food 1Service 5Ambience 4

we both got sick from their mushroom special....sadly.

Y
London
1 review
Dined on 6 June 2019
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 4

I’m always so excited when I visit the secret garden and have been 3 times. Ow since my first visit in March. The customer service is excellent, with charming waiters and lovely decor it’s easy to see why. Myself and my husband had the fish cakes to start. They are full of flavour and so fresh. For main I had the open steak sandwich and my husband had the pork burger. Both were exquisite. To end our afternoon we ordered pistachio cake. The serving of this is awesome and always has us coming back again for more. The only thing I would say is that the menu could do with a few more choices on it, but only a few as the dishes we’ve had so far have been excellent. We will be back again soon!

JW
Kent
1 review
Dined on 6 June 2019
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

A wonderful reception as always from the fantastic staff at the Secret Garden. Wanted to celebrate our first anniversary by returning to where we were married. Such a wonderful inviting location in a glorious setting. Cannot recommend and thank the team enough for making our visit another to remember.

HS
1 review
Dined on 30 May 2019
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

Secret Garden never fails to impress, always happy when we leave here.
10/10 everytime!!

KP
Kent
1 review
Dined on 29 May 2019
Overall 3Food 3Service 3Ambience 3

Disappointing, we were not offered the set lunch menu when we arrive because there was a wedding reception. However, when given the dessert menu, the set lunch menu was offered. We would have appreciated a phone call to warn us.

RP
London
5 reviews
Dined on 25 May 2019
Overall 4Food 4Service 2Ambience 4

Food was good ....especially Cauliflower soup ( can I have recipe please?) but not enough for price as I was still very hungry after meal. Service , unfortunately, was very slow....had to ask if Starters then Main Meals were ready after a reasonable period of waiting.

CH
London
11 reviews
Dined on 23 May 2019
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

Beautiful environment with such pretty gardens to view while eating a delicious lunch. The set lunch menu is great value. Lovely staff particularly a young man named Jamie who seamlessly pulled back a situation over an order muddle up. Loved it.

GB
1 review
Dined on 21 May 2019
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

We had afternoon tea here for my wife’s birthday, the service and the welcome was very good,

The front of house staff were friendly and James our waiter very helpful. Now the food

Out of this world!!! The chef done us and the restaurant proud.

I would highly recommend the secret garden, for the setting, the staff and last but not least the food




,,

DH
1 review
Dined on 17 May 2019
Overall 4Food 4Service 4Ambience 2

I have put the noise level at energetic as you do not have a selection for very noisy and offputting as this is what it was.It was the only thing that spoiled our lunch

MT
Kent
1 review
Dined on 15 May 2019
Overall 5Food 5Service 4Ambience 5

We had a very enjoyable lunch at the Secret Garden and sat outside on a lovely sunny day.

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