The Wife of Bath
What We Love
- A food-driven getaway, including complimentary Spanish breakfast and an optional dinnerThe tapas bar and restaurant, by the owner and operator of two other award-winning eateries
- The daily Spanish breakfast and option of a three-course dinner
- The elegant design of the accommodations
What To Know
- This foodie hotel is owned by Michelin-starred chef Mark Sargeant
- Wye is just an hour outside of London
- The inn is housed in a charming 500-year-old building
Historic Wye, near Ashford in Kent, is filled with stories of yesteryear, most notably featuring as a stop-off point for weary pilgrims en-route to Canterbury in Chaucer’s The Canterbury Tales. Today’s visitors can also find a welcome place of rest at The Wife of Bath, named after the notorious character in one of the most famous of Chaucer’s tales. Housed in a Grade II-listed 500-year-old building and separate garden cottage, its guest accommodation oozes a modern-day personality all of its own. Despite being refurbished just over a year ago it’s already been nominated for Best Boutique Stay in the Muddy Stilettos Awards 2017 and boasts a TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence.
The five rooms are named after other Canterbury Tales characters – Franklin, Squire and Cook among them. They are simply but stylishly kitted out with wrought-iron bedsteads and exposed wood-beamed ceilings. The Wife of Bath has been on the foodie map for many a year and you can expect a tasty selection of northern Spanish-inspired dishes in the newly updated tapas bar and a la carte restaurant, under the guidance of Michelin-starred chef Mark Sargeant – Gordon Ramsay’s former right-hand man. It’s just the thing after a day out exploring the ‘Garden of England’ with this part of Kent boasting a number of excellent hiking trails, as well as being within easy reach of Canterbury, with its famous cathedral.
How to Get There
We visited on a Friday night ahead of a trip across the channel. It was, quite simply, the perfect start to our gastronomic trip. We stayed in the beautiful family room with our son and loved all the touches which made the place special - the cute carafe of sherry and gorgeous nuts (Mark’s Almonds!) left for us, the incredibly reasonably priced honesty bar and fluffy robes.
As for the restaurant, whilst we had hoped it would be good, we were blown away. Every dish was precise and delicious, really interesting choices all overflowing with flavour. Wines were so reasonably priced and the puddings irresistible even though we really didn’t need them - we managed to eat pudding for 4, even though we were only 3. Huge thanks to the kitchen who went the extra mile when many rigidly stick to their ways - allowed us to order something not on the a la carte menu and unilaterally dished up the apple pie meant for 2 with 3 portions of the ice cream that went with it. It’s that level of customer service that makes such a huge difference to the experience.
Breakfast such a treat...the Spanish theme works so well and gives rise to such a refreshing change from the standard offerings first thing. We had no need to eat again until the evening!
Staff all friendly and bothered. A huge treat. Don’t change...!
Room was quaint, clean and very nice
Dinner was excellent, and we used a mid week offer
Breakfast was lovely
Staff nice and friendly
Overall we thought for around £200 including drinks it was great value
This is an amazing restaurant with rooms. The mid-week deal is great value. When we arrived we were early treated and taken to our room. The room was big and very comfortable. Also there was welcome fruit, sherry and bottled water. The only quibble is that the wifi was very slow.
The restaurant was also great. The choice on the special deal menu was more than sufficient and the food was very nice.
On a very hot Saturday we were in need of a light lunch and decided to try the tapas at The Wife of Bath. Initially we were a little disappointed as the bar area where the tapas is served did not look very comfortable, as it was just bar stools at the bar and we felt we wanted to sit down at a table. Tapas is not served in the restaurant, but we were told we could sit on the terrace. There was a large umbrella which shaded our table nicely, and so we decided to stay.
The tapas we had were extremely delicious and very nicely presented. There is attention to detail in the food here, with first class ingredients. The service was faultless.
To drink we had a very fine Spanish dark beer and wonderfully refreshing homemade lemonade.
Desserts were very nice, if modest in portion size.
This isn’t the cheapest place to eat by any means, but the quality is well worth paying for.
The only down side would be visiting on a less clement day, and having to perch at the bar.
We stayed for one night to break the journey from France and found the hotel set in a lovely garden in a pretty village. The staff were very welcoming and we enjoyed an excellent meal in the restaurant. Sadly our room in the annex was not all we had hoped for. The advertised fridge was not in the room, but in a shared hallway with another room, which I felt compromised the concept of an honesty bar. The bed was comfortable and the linen and towels were of good quality, but there was absolutely no storage. No space in the bathroom to put anything apart from a toothbrush - not even a small shelf - and only the tiniest of drawers in the bedside table. The cosmetic tissues were precariously perched on the window ledge and the tea making facilities were on a crowded tray. With not much space around the bed, this made movement around the room a bit tricky. No full length mirror either which was annoying. Possibly a male guest would find this workable, but for me trying to dress and then apply make up with nowhere to sit and no convenient mirror in a very dark room was frustrating. Also the bathroom could do with a tidy up around the shower area.
I would like to return to this hotel on a future visit to France, but would choose a different room if there was one which suited me better.