WHET MY APPETITE. Conceived by best friends and chefs Holly Taylor and Toby Geneen, the idea behind Kindling is to offer delicious food, served with care and integrity. Members of the Sustainable Restaurant Association, the pair work with local suppliers who operate with high animal welfare standards and produce additive-free ingredients. Using a natural charcoal fire, fermentation and preservation processes they run their restaurant by creating a network of like-minded people, from fishermen and farmers to staff and customers, who believe in low-waste, ethical, sustainable food. With an ethos of ‘Nature writes our menu,’ they draw on the seasons’ best ingredients to create vibrant dishes with excellent provenance.
WHAT’S ON THE MENU? The experience is about all the senses. The open kitchen sits in the middle of the restaurant so your meal begins with the aroma of your food on the charcoal barbeque. We began with a beautifully presented cuttlefish stew, served in its own lidded pot, decorated with focaccia croute and aioli. It reminded me of amazing tapas dishes I’d eaten in Northern Spain – it has a rich, authentic flavour. The pressing of Saddlescombe mutton, served with pickled, charred and puréed broccoli also melted in the mouth. For mains, the pan-roast monkfish was served with grilled cauliflower, cut through by a zing of tart apple and lemon hazelnut butter. Our favourite dessert was poached pear with a sublime pear sorbet, a light touch of star anise, honeycomb and walnuts. A unique dish to end the meal.
HOW’S THE MOOD? The smart, modern interior combining wood and plants helps convey the ethos of restaurant. Friendly, staff are on hand to explain the menu and recommend wine pairing. It’s a grown-up atmosphere, particularly in the evenings, and not really suitable for young children.
CAN I SEE THE SEA? You can’t, but the beach and The Palace Pier are just a five-minute stroll across the road.
WHAT’S THE DAMAGE? Starters priced from around £9, mains from £19.50, and desserts are £8.50. Side dishes are £5.50.
OPENING TIMES? Lunch is from 12pm to 2.30pm Thursday to Sunday. Dinner is 6pm to 9/9.30pm Wednesday to Sunday.
HOW DO I BOOK? Call 01273 732534 or visit kindlingrestaurant.com.