Originally built in 1616 by the Boys family, having landed in England from France at the time of the Norman conquest. The estate later passed into the Mersham and Knatchbull families – it is also believed Charles l stayed at the home while fleeing the forces of Oliver Cromwell.
Located on the southern edge of the North Downs in Kent, Boys Hall has undergone months of restoration to transform this beautiful Grade ll listed building to its former glory. The restaurant dining room looks out on to the walled gardens on both sides with terrace seating, 10 ensuite rooms plus on-site pub and lounge areas all set within 3 acres of well-kept grounds. Owners Kristie and Brad Lomas, along with head chef Robbie Lorraine and team have opened the doors of their much-anticipated restaurant.
Situated in the ‘Garden of England’ the menu centres around seasonal, local produce serving an à la carte offering for lunch and dinner. Situated beneath lies a premium wine cellar with capacity for globally renowned wines and Kentish fizz as well as serving a seasonal cocktails list and local ales. The Boys Hall was a greatly anticipated venture for Aspect County, join us on our pilgrimage throughout this feature.
For starters we opted for: the Thyme- scented wild mushrooms, whipped ragstone goats cheese, brioche crumb, black garlic along with the Potted Langland Farm Duck, apple cranberry, curly endive salad with toasted sourdough. A well put together meal with mushrooms will always be a winner this time of the year and needless to say the Boys Hall chef certainly pulled off a modest culinary masterpiece on this starter. Presented beautifully and tasting much the same, the only draw back to its brilliance was the picture-perfect plate did not last very long on the plate! The Potted Farm Duck, another great option for the season. A rich gamey tasting pot of duck accompanied with sweet tasting cranberries which spread on the sour dough created a wholesome start to the dining experience.
For the main we decided on the Grilled breast of cornfed chicken, which was accompanied by tarragon stuffing, creamed potatoes, curly kale, beetroot crisps and pomegranate sauce. And the Cider-braised belly of pork, porky quaver, bacon jam, black pudding, grilled leak, sour cabbage and apple sauce. Standards had been set following the starters and happy to say- both options lived up to expectations. Both meals were extremely impressive, following the same quality and care over the presentation and serving warming hearty flavours which felt just right when escaping inside from an Autumn evening.
Before our visit to Boys Hall, I had seen already from their social media channels something what had been on my mind for most of the afternoon, which I soon discovered was their Lemon meringue tart. I did not need to think twice about my dessert choice, and I was not disappointed. A delicate treat positioned on a bed of blueberry purée, scorched top meringue and shining with lemon pearls really did finish the meal perfectly.
Following the meal, we were escorted through to the lounge area, wow! what a surprise. The other side to this beautifully restored building houses a very cosy, warming lounge area, with multiple open fireplaces- checked on regularly by the staff whom, if felt necessary would lay on another log. A very comfortable chesterfield style sofa positioned in front of a gentle log burning stove awaited us to enjoy a quiet tea whilst allowing the experience of the food and dine to settle in.
All the staff from front of house to waitress runners and of course the chefs showed enthusiasm and a clear enjoyment and love for the Boys Hall, and could you blame them? The building has you in awe of the little detail at every corner. Every little piece of the building hides and preserves something unique, be it the reclaimed solid stone window frames, the local felled oak tree which has been crafted to form the mast of the open fireplace within the restaurant down to the furniture choice and paintings on the walls. The Boy’s Hall is truly a place to be adorned and enjoyed.
The only downside to the evening is that we couldn’t stay longer.
Double rooms will be available from £160 per night, bed and breakfast. Restaurant open now Wednesday – Sunday for lunch and dinner.
Bedrooms opening December 2022.
Written by Damon Robinson