Chapter One is a restaurant located in Lockbottom in Kent. I’ve followed this restaurant on Facebook for a number of months as I’ve heard good things about their service and most importantly, their food. Their Facebook posts show beautifully presented modern-looking dishes using seasonal produce and I must admit I find it hard to scroll past these images without a second glance.
So when my sister suggested that we dine there with a couple of her old friends, the night before her wedding, I jumped at the chance to see whether the tantalising pictures tasted as good as they looked.
On arrival at Chapter One, we were swiftly directed to our seats in the middle of the dining room. It’s a very modern, open space. Feels like you are dining in a very large living room. Our waiter promptly asked us if we’d like some drinks, perhaps a little too prompt as we’d barely graced our seats. I for one, often like to decide what I’m going to eat first as I will order a drink that will compliment my meal.
But after perusing the menu, we’d all decided and orders for drinks and food were placed. Bread was offered, all sorts of lovely bread, parmesan ciabatta, sourdough, just to name a couple.
The starters arrived shortly after we’d supped a couple of mouthfuls of wine and enjoyed the bready-goodness. I had opted for the baked beetroot and goats curd salad with pine nuts, compressed celery and sorrel cress. On arrival, I could tell it was something special. I’ve watched enough Masterchef to be able to tell everything on that dish had a purpose and a lot of work had gone into prepping it and plating it to be as appetising as it was. The starter was delicious and I enjoyed every mouthful.
The main course I opted for was the josper grilled, USDA, grain fed rib-eye steak with triple cooked chips and Béarnaise sauce. I asked for my steak to be cooked medium. If I’m being honest, it was a little pink for medium and my sister who has asked for medium-rare, was a little overdone. In hindsight we should have swapped, but I can’t fault the taste of the steak. It was delicious. It was also a very big piece of steak. I finished neither all of the steak or the chips, but I did give it a good go.
I couldn’t fit a dessert in, but some of our party did. Ordering a Gariguette strawberry macaroon, with matcha tea cremeaux and strawberry sorbet and a choux pastry éclair with mango chilli compote, passion curd and coconut sorbet. As you can tell from the pictures, they were works of art and they said they tasted pretty good too.
A three-course meal on a Friday or Saturday night is £39.95 but be aware there are supplements for some dishes. For example, the steak carries a supplement of £14.00.
In comparison, Chapter One is pricey to other restaurants in Kent, but as you often find, you get what you pay for. I thought the meal was incredibly good value for the quality of the food, the setting and the service. Yes I can find tiny faults, but they sure didn’t ruin what was a lovely evening and what was a perfect send off for my sister into married life. I’d highly recommend this restaurant for a special occasion, or just because you fancy a bit of a treat. I’d return, given the opportunity.
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