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“Humble and honest”

The Kentish Rifleman
Ranked #10 of 103 Restaurants in Tonbridge
Certificate of Excellence
Cuisines: British, Pub
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Dining options: Reservations
Description: a 16th century pub/restaurant offering honest, freshly cooked lunch and dinner. Restaurant closed Sun and Monday evenings. Gluten free and vegan options available. Dogs welcome in the bar and attractive garden. 4 real ales on tap.
West Malling, United Kingdom
1 review
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Humble and honest”
Reviewed May 21, 2013

Since being devasted a few years back in a fire, the pub has had a facelift and is all the more welcoming for it. In the winter- log fires warm the cosy rooms, during the summer- the doors are frequently left open to allow some cool breeze. Have been coming here for years and the atmosphere, the welcome recieved is to be admired in this age of chain run gastro-pubs.
I've been impressed by the level of attention shown to developing the menu- there is a wide range of tastes catered for in the menu- and in the wines/beers (the real ales are second to none!) and with regular events nights being held a customer is always spoilt for choice.
I may of course be biased as I have been coming for years- but maybe that should tell people reading this something. There are no shortages of pubs/restaurants/cafes, etc. in the surrounding villages and towns- so why come here? Because not only is the food and drink good, and the welcome received a hearty one, but it touches something that none of the bigger establishments can- something we are close to losing in this country where the workers clock in and out and dont stay afterwards to have a quiet drink at the bar- a touch of community, of home and hearth...and THAT is reflected in the whole package.

  • Visited May 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
2 Thank Robert C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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157 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Level 4 Contributor
30 reviews
21 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 50 helpful votes
“Oh dear”
Reviewed May 13, 2013 via mobile

Not impressed. 4 of us visited. Only Chardonnay white available which was surprising for a pub and not a good start. Two of the main courses we selected only had one portion available. The topping of the steak and ale pie was not cooked even after sending it back. Then the jam roly poly was a minuscule portion and barely warm. Overall not a good night out

Visited April 2013
1 Thank Surferboy66
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
1 review
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Never again”
Reviewed May 2, 2013

Went in for a quick lunch with my brother and mother. The pub is fantastic looking from the outside, with a warm old world style on the inside. The owner/manager seemed friendly enough but was not involved in the service at all. The young barman had the service skills of a plank of wood! Ranging from flicking a beermat at my mothers glass of wine and picking his nose while reading the paper at the bar, only for him to disappear for a fraction of a second and bring our lunch plates out. The haddock tasted as if the oil it had been fried in hadn't been changed in months. The KR burger was chewy. And all the chips were rock solid. No check backs done during the meal, so no chance to complain about it, and by the end all we wanted to do was get out of there.

Will not be going back. Such a shame to see a wonderful looking pub dragged down by the lack of simple hospitality skills.

  • Visited May 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
3 Thank BenAlkureishi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tonbridge, United Kingdom
1 review
“Traditional Pub with Restaurant”
Reviewed April 1, 2013

The staff are extremely helpful and friendly . There is always a good selection of beers, with guest brews available. A blazing log fire awaits in winter months and the traditional decor in the roomy bar gives an intimate feel. The restaurant goes from strength to strength, with new dishes being added- whilst at the same time being the best value in the vicinity.

Visited March 2013
Thank Paul_S503920
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 2 Contributor
6 reviews
6 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“My favourite pub”
Reviewed March 23, 2013

I moved to this area a few years ago and was fortunate enough to find the rifleman. A very rare example of a traditional country pub with a welcoming atmosphere, friendly locals and good honest food at honst prices. There are few places like the Rifleman left - long may ot continue

  • Visited March 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank whittersKent
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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