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Bank Hol Beer Fest

Bank Hol Beer Fest


The Abergavenny Arms in Frant near Tunbridge Wells is to host a four-day beer festival over the August Bank Holiday, from Friday 26th to Monday 29th August. The highlight of the event will be live music in the pub garden with a hog roast on the Sunday.

During the festival the imposing 16th century pub, which is open all day for food, will serve 18 different beers. These will include many local craft beers and guest ales from around the UK and beyond.

“For me, the final bank holiday Sunday of the summer is the best day of the year,” said pub landlord Richard Burrell. “Party all day with no work to worry about the next morning – except for us poor pub workers.”

A popular destination for beer enthusiasts, the bar normally offers no fewer than six hand pulled ales from Kent and Sussex brewers, such as Harvey’s Best, Tonbridge Coppernob, Long Man’s American Pale Ale and Best Bitter, Larkin’s Traditional and Dark Star’s Hophead. Also stocked is Curious Brew from Chapel Down Brewery.

During the beer fest, the usual selection of premium lagers will be added to when the Abergavenny Arms becomes the first hostelry in south east England to serve newly imported gluten Goa Premium Beer from India. Until now the unique 4.8% pilsner had only been available at a few select restaurants.

The will be a barbecue available all day in the beer garden - recently named one of the best in and around Tunbridge Wells by the Kent & Sussex Courier newspaper

The pub, situated by the A267, is a popular stopping off point for Londoners visiting the Sussex coast.


New categories in Asian Curry Awards

New categories in Asian Curry Awards


Nominations for the sixth Asian Curry Awards (ACA) are now open. This year sees the awards expanded to include Turkish and Middle Eastern restaurants and takeaways for the first time. New award categories for vegetarian, curry pub, buffet and event caterer have also been created.

Curry lovers can nominate their favourite restaurants for The awards which are open to Bangladeshi, Burmese, Chinese, Filipino, Indian, Indonesian, Japanese, Korean, Malaysian, Middle Eastern, Nepalese, Pakistani, Singaporean Sri Lankan, Thai, Turkish and Vietnamese restaurants and takeaways.

Last year’s top accolade went to Vivek Singh’s acclaimed Cinnamon Club, which was named Best South Asian Restaurant (Central London).

“To survive and thrive, restaurant owners must respond to customers’ changing customer tastes and chefs need to innovate and produce the exciting, healthy and authentic dishes today’s discerning diners demand,” said Yawar Khan, Chairman of the Asian Curry Awards, adding,"These awards are designed to recognise the best in this industry and encourage ever higher standards and the next generation of chefs and restaurateurs to join this dynamic sector,” added Khan.

Whilst the judging criteria are heavily weighted towards the quality of the food and cooking; additional points will be awarded for ambience, customer service, community involvement and hygiene.

The full list of national award categories is:

Fine Dining Asian Restaurant of the Year
Casual Dining Restaurant of the Year
Asian Takeaway/Delivery of the Year
Newcomer of the Year (restaurants established less than 3 years)
Lifetime Achievement
Buffet Restaurant of the Year
Curry Pub of the Year
Chef of the Year
Vegetarian Restaurant of the Year
Event Caterer of the Year
International Asian Restaurant of the Year

There are also 10 regional awards for the Best South Asian restaurants in London, London suburbs, South East, South West, East, South Coast, North, Midlands, Wales and Scotland & Northern Ireland.




Koh & Co

Koh & Co


Koh Thai Tapas restaurant will open its latest site in the Hampshire market town of Romsey on 28th July. Romsey is the group’s third restaurant in Hampshire – and 11th in total.

The 80-seater restaurant features the iconic features of a Koh Thai Tapas venue. The popular concept has become known for its vibrant hand painted murals, ornate fretwork and the prominent wooden clad bars.

A food-led business the tapas offerings allows customers to sample several exquisite smaller dishes. These include the ‘24 hour ribs’, tender juicy pork ribs marinated in n a rich, jealously guarded secret sauce; a fiery but fragrant ‘Jungle Curry of a thin sauce with Thai herbs, green peppercorns and sliced red chillis; and the ’Special Crispy Squid’, pan fried until tender in an ultra-light batter and served with a hot sweet sauce.
For busy office workers, there a ‘Light Lunch – Eat in 30 Minutes’ menu offering a selection of healthy dishes for less than £10, served 12 noon to 3:00pm.

During the school holidays Koh Thai is expected to be a hit with young families. According to owner Andy Lennox, the focus is on reasonably priced healthy eating combined with a ‘dining experience’ for the parent as well as their offspring.

“An engaging menu for the children, first class baby changing facilities. knowledgeable and child friendly staff are hallmarks of the Koh Thai brand,” he said.


Shepherd Neame Buys 13 Pubs

Shepherd Neame Buys 13 Pubs


Shepherd Neame is taking over 13 more pubs in a deal worth £13.4m.

The Kent-based brewer, pub and hotel operator has acquired the freeholds of The Albion Taverna and The Limes in Faversham and The Shakespeare, The Parrot and Ye Olde Beverlie in Canterbury. A further 8 pubs have been purchased from Enterprise Inns in Kent, Sussex and Surrey.

Upon completion the number of pub in Shepherd Neame estate will total 336, of which 59 will managed, 270 tenanted and leased, plus and seven free of tie leases.

The announcement was made alongside the company's annual trading report showing like-for-like sales up 4.6%, while earnings rose 2.4%.


Restaurant Raid

Restaurant Raid


The Raj Pavilion restaurant in Tunbridge Well, has been raided by a team of immigration officials, following a tip off that foreign nationals were being employed illegally.

"A 27-year-old man from Bangladesh was questioned by officials on suspicion of illegal working. Officials are currently investigating his immigration status," said a Home Office Spokesman

The Courier spoke to Jewel Zaman, insists he has done nothing wrong.

"They said there were no problems for the time being, I'm not worried about it," said Zaman who was told to expect a call in the next month to find out if any further action will be taken.

Immigration officials also visited the property in April 2013 and arrested one man.

Businesses can receive a fine of up to £20,000 for each worker employed illegal.


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