Tom Kerridge's Pub in the Park in Tunbridge Wells
What I loved about it:
Delicious food and live music, what’s not to love?
Value for money (out of 10):
Pub in the Park Tunbridge Wells
We went to check out the UK’s biggest (and best) food and musical festival on Saturday in Dunorlan Park, Tunbridge Wells, which is just over a 30-minute drive from our home in Sussex. With the children now aged 12 and 9, they are at the age where they can really enjoy live music and family friendly festival vibes. Plus, we are all big fans of McFly, so Pub in the Park was the perfect summertime outing for us.
Even the rain didn’t spoil our buzz as we joined the thousands of foodies and music lovers in the park, which was bustling with people of all ages. I instantly felt like I was at a festival, but a nice clean, sophisticated one with heavenly aromas filling the air.
As we slowly strolled the Artisan Food Market and shopping village, featuring a vast variety of locally produced items, we joined the huge crowd at the Miele Chef Demo Stage who were watching Si King from the Hairy Bikers in awe and listening intently.
I was instantly drawn to the Chapel Down English Sparkling Wine stand whereas my husband wanted to check out the Greene King bar and ‘chillaxation’ zone, where there were oversized bean bags and beach chairs to relax and enjoy your choice of beverage in.
As the core focus of these events is to celebrate the illustrious British pub, there was a selection of six pubs to choose from and dishes cost £7 each. We started our culinary journey at The Kentish Hare and all devoured a mouthwatering ‘Mrs T Chicken’s Slider’, buttermilk chicken with a ranch slaw and pickles in a brioche bun. It would have been scandalous had we not stopped by The Hand and Flowers to try the Curry Dog, a Tom Kerridge hot dog with curry ketchup, chilli and mint chutney with Bombay Mix. It was divine!
We loved how we were not restricted to one pub or felt any pressure to make a snap decision on what to eat. We soaked up the ambiance at our leisure and made the right food choices for us. The only negative thing was that the 9-year old walked past the Les Churros Amigos food truck and did not stop asking for some! People were carrying massive buckets of 35 freshly cooked churros and pots of tantalising Belgian chocolate sauce. I finally relented and purchased a pot of nine to share, only to give him energy for dancing…
I think McFly are the only band I have ever seen live that came on early. Five minutes early in fact! The crowd went wild for ‘the boys’ (now men), who I have loved listening to for the last (ahem) 20 years! McFly were a great choice of band for all ages, belting out chart-topping anthems and some songs from their new album. Hardcore fans had saved their spots at the front whilst others, including us as a family, chose to position ourselves slightly further back to enjoy a fantastic view of the stage and ample room to dance. McFly were absolutely brilliant! They rocked out Dunorlan Park and definitely got some news fans that night.
The price is fair for the pristine environment, facilities and the calibre of vendors there. You do have to factor in funds for food and drink on top of the entry price for a fully immersive experience.
It was a truly memorable evening. The atmosphere was very relaxed and we felt extremely safe with the children there. The choice of food and drink was superb, as was the entertainment.
There’s still time to enjoy a Pub in the Park this summer. Don’t miss this weekend in Brighton and other dates below:
14-16 July 2023, Brighton
1-3 September 2023, Chiswick
8-10 September 2023 , St Albans
Entry costs £56.03 per adult and £41.21 per child (aged 6-15). Children under five go free. Weekend Passes are also available to book and cost £174.93 per adult and £98 per child (6-15).