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Our Food Ethos


Here at The Ferry House we’re firmly of the belief that local is best – and you don’t get much more local than your own back garden. Taking ‘pride of plate’ on our menus is the bountiful produce from our large Kitchen Garden, beef and game from our family-farm and local estate, plus award-winning spirits, distilled from our own grains. What we can’t grow, farm or forage, we source from a handpicked selection of Kent’s best local producers.


Fruits, veg & botanicals from our Kitchen Garden, grown & cropped daily by our own green fingers.


Salt-marsh grazed beef, our free range game & foraged treasures from the shoreline & hedgerows.


Our family-farm grain, distilled by the Copper Rivet Distillery into award-winning gin, vodka & whisky.


Back in 2013 our Kitchen Garden was born from one, humble lettuce bed. Today it’s over an acre of lovingly cultivated beds of asparagus, greens, squash and herbs - and more besides! There’s also a polytunnel bursting with tomatoes, peppers, beans and more, a large fruit cage, greenhouse and a wonderfully wild ‘Secret Orchard.’

Our team of gardeners work together closely with our chefs, cropping daily to provide fresh, delicious and seasonal produce year-round. You’ll find it ‘cropping up’ everywhere on our menus - from mains and desserts, to jams and drinks.

Kitchen Garden


All of our beef comes from our family’s farm at Eastchurch. We have been farming here since 1968 and currently have over 2000 cattle grazing the salt marshes at the nearby Elmley Nature Reserve. It’s matured for 28 days to ensure a mouth-watering taste and texture.

The game bird meat served at The Ferry House is from our family shoot on the Harty Estate. We shoot weekly through the season and always prep the birds ourselves, so we are prestigiously proud of the quality. Our Head Chef James Pilcher often home-smokes game, so look out for that on the menu.

All our eggs are certified free-range, again this is a family affair with a flock of 100 ‘Harty Hens’ to supply us year-round. The chefs are also regularly rummaging along our edible shoreline and in our Harty hedges, not just for the food menu but for the herbs and botanicals in our cocktails and mocktails.


As if serving up our own beef, game and Kitchen Garden produce isn’t enough... We even serve home-grown spirits!

Our family farm grows three types of grain, which when harvested is taken down to Chatham's Copper Rivet Distillery to be turned into their award-winning gins, vodka and whisky. We’re proud to bring these outstanding artisan spirits full circle from the farm, back to the bar.

Don’t forget to ask for a peek at the bottle at the bar, so you can see what year’s harvest your tipple is distilled from.

And the spent grain from the distillery? To reduce the carbon footprint of our herd, this comes back to the family-farm to feed our cattle during the winter months.


Low food miles, anti food waste and sourcing as much produce as possible locally all play part in our mission towards green dining. In home growing produce in our 1.5 acre Kitchen Garden and utilising our unique opportunity to showcase our family farmed beef and eggs, along with Harty estate game and edibles foraged from our surrounding shorelines and hedgerows, we're always looking for ways to lower our footprint.

In growing our own produce and working closely with small suppliers and producers, we truly appreciate how much passion and work goes into great produce. That’s why we too are passionate about reducing food wastage, with our own composter, using food waste from our kitchen or diners, to produce inhouse, nutrient-rich compost.

Our onsite butchery gives us complete control of a ‘nose to tail’ ethos using the whole animal with our beef being from our family’s high welfare, Red Tractor farm just three miles from The Ferry House. The herds' waste also fertilises Elmley and Swale nature reserve, where they graze, and their grazing crops the grass for ground nesting birds, however it also leaves tufts so the chicks can hide from the many birds of prey in the area.


Our ultra-seasonal menus are born of our 1.5 acre Kitchen Garden, family farm and local estate. You'll be introduced to new produce, exciting and creatively prepared, but presented in an approachable and un-pretentious manner, pairing unusual ingredients among others which are familiar.

We can achieve this by home growing produce not easily available in supermarkets, or to restaurants via wholesalers - produce that perhaps has to be handpicked or is extremely perishable and doesn’t transport well. Avoiding both issues with our Kitchen Garden makes for a fresh and surprising menu that changes regularly with the seasons.

Take a look around our Kitchen Garden on your next visit, where you can see the unique produce growing for this seasons menus and next.

Proud Member of Produced In Kent

I have always triumphed local produce here at The Ferry House, so it was a natural progression for us to join ‘Produced in Kent’ - an organisation formed to help promote local produce, and to shout the message that local is best! By eating local produce, you are keeping the local economy alive, and there is no denying that Kent has a lot of fabulous food to offer. We already use a lot of Kent’s best produce, and we aim to increase this as much as possible by sourcing any products we don’t home produce from within a 30 mile radius.

Alex Burden