I would have never thought to visit Folkestone had it not been for a friend’s wedding taking place in a neighbouring village. It had never even occurred to me to travel to the South-East of England in search of sun, sea and sand, and Folkestone is just a stone’s throw from the capital. A fast train from London St. Pancras to Folkestone takes as little as 52 minutes, leaving London every 30 minutes, so now there’s no excuse not to plan a day-trip to the seaside!
Whilst I am thankful to have found this gorgeous little seaside town, full of history and funky little boutique shops, I only wish I’d had more time to explore. The wedding was of course the priority for the weekend, so lining our stomachs and feeding our hangovers were focal points to our Folkestone get away. I’m sure there’s much more to Folkestone than its food, but it’s always a great place to start. Here’s how I tasted my way around the town in less than 12 hours…
'Lining the stomach' Lunch at 'Bloom'
Lovely Italian/Mediterranean food ranging from locally sourced fish to hand stretched pizzas (which are apparently "The best pizzas in the south east"). The theatre-style kitchen serves up fantastic food without pretension: well presented yet generous portions. For starters or ‘sharesies’ we ordered breads and olives for the table (we went for the Aglio or Formaggio and the Kentish Bread & Oil- Bloom's bake their own fresh bread every morning). And for once I was able to join in with the appetizer as the restaurant offered gluten-free bread at no extra cost. The mouth-watering menu made it difficult to choose so when the waitress came over I panic picked the Linguine Frutti di Mare (seafood linguine) with gluten-free pasta. I wasn’t disappointed as the dish was real show stopper, dressed up with enormous prawns! Bloom's isn't a cheap-eat but the restaurant's friendly staff and understated class creates a relaxed atmosphere that invites you to linger long after your meal!
Blooms@the1/4, 2-4 The Old High St, Folkestone CT20 1R
The Linguine Frutti di Mare:
'The night after' Brunch at 'Googies'
It was nearly midday by the time we sat down for brunch at Googies, a quirky coffee bar offering US diner-style classics with a British twist. So as you can imagine- I was starving. Thankfully, Googies serves up decent-sized portions in dog-bowl style dishes. Ordering from the ‘things on toast’ section of the menu I went for smashed avocado, poached eggs and grilled vine tomatoes, served on a gluten-free muffin. I was far too hungry to take photos so I stole some off the restaurants Instagram page, worth checking out if you ever want some foodspiration! Sadly I was too full to sample the gluten-free pancakes so a return trip is definitely on the cards!
Googies Restaurant Bar and Coffee House, 15 Rendezvous St, Folkestone CT20 1EY
The Big Kent Breakfast:
'Things on toast'- smoked salmon and scrambled egg:
The Grand Slam Breakfast!
The Veggie Skillet:
Make it your mission to visit Folkestone on your next free weekend. Perfect for day trips and overnight stays this historic port town offers sea views to France from the mile-long cliff-top promenade of The Leas. I think we hit the weather jack-pot as were blessed with gorgeous sunshine and stunning views all weekend. But if the weather fails you and your picnic remember that Folkestone is abundant in bars and restaurants to indulge in!
Next time I’m here I must get round to trying Folkestone’s famed food: fish and chips!
-Folkestone by train: https://www.thetrainline.com/train-times/folkestone-central-to-london-st-pancras-intl
-Folkestone tourist information: http://www.folkestonetouristinformation.co.uk/
-Folkestone weather: http://www.bbc.co.uk/weather/2649258