Amsterdam to Tonbridge with Chef Justin Brown – Old Fire Station Tunbridge

Last night, the husband and I attended a pop-up event at The Old Fire Station in Tonbridge with Chef Justin Brown.  Built in 1901, the fire station stood empty after its closure for nearly 35 years before it was purchased by a local, and turned into an amazing space that hosts pop-ups for restaurants, bars, artists and much more.

The venue is just a short train ride from London and very close to Tunbridge station. Last night however we decided to drive and it only took 45 minutes from Weybridge and as I had literally tried every wine on the menu, it probably wasn’t as pleasant a drive on the way home as it was going there. “Lairy” I think Bradley likes to call me when I have been drinking white wine! ha ha

The event last night started at 7.30 pm and was sold out to capacity with 40 covers. On arrival, we sat on a shared table next to a lovely couple and my new friend and I started with wine one on the list. The wine/beer list isn’t extensive, however it is all local wines, with last nights offerings coming from the Hush Heath Estate, Staplehurst in Kent. Of all of them, “Skye’s English Chardonnay was my favourite, and at only £5 for a large glass it was lovely.

Our Chef, Justin Brown trained at the Landmark (one of my favourite hotels) and has also worked with an array of amazing Chef’s including Jamie Oliver.  Justin also worked at private members club the Harrington Club owned by Ronnie Wood and has worked a lot in my other home Australia,  so Bradley and I were very excited for the evening.

We started with confit salmon which was poached in olive oil and had some lovely horseradish cream with it before moving onto a cauliflower risotto.

The cauliflower risotto was probably my favourite part of the menu. Its texture and taste was lovely.  Next up was the bao bun which is a steamed bun with crispy chicken and cabbage slaw inside.  You can see from my picture what it looks like and if I could make them myself, I would eat them every day. I have never had anything like them and Bradley even had seconds!

After the bao bun we had a good sized piece of brie with black truffle and then chocolate mouse with frozen yoghurt and pomegranate molasses which tasted amazing.  It tasted like a melted chocolate bar as a mouse (not very descriptive I know) but it was sooo good (not sure how many calories I need to put in My Fitness Pal for that one!)

Our night at the Tonbridge Fire Station was lots of fun and something different. It really is a great event space and it would be great to hire for a group if you were doing a conference in a nearby hotel. The space would also suit a private, intimate party as it is so unique. I am looking forward to seeing what other pop-ups they host in the future.

For more information on the venue, contact Sam here.

The Old Fire Station – Castle Street, Tonbridge, TN9 1BH