Home   What's On   News   Article

Secret Drinker reviews the Captain Digby pub, Kingsgate Bay, Broadstairs

As a regular on the Viking Trail, I’ve cycled past the Captain Digby, near Broadstairs, several times but have never ventured in.

Arriving on two wheels in lycra and with the sun still shining on the righteous I decided to sit at a picnic bench outside. Fortunately for me all the little darlings are now back in the hands of long-suffering teachers so both the pub and garden were relatively empty apart from a few token wrinklies.

You’re guaranteed great beach views, I could even see the wind farm
You’re guaranteed great beach views, I could even see the wind farm

Or at least they were until a legion of German exchange students invaded the place and started ordering soft drinks to accompany their packed lunches – I was certainly glad I got to the bar and placed my order ahead of the masses from Bavaria.

There was a sign stating by order of the captain only food and drink purchased on the premises can be consumed but clearly the captain was turning a blind eye while I was in.

From my seat there was a spectacular view of the beach many feet below and again, the additional signs making it crystal clear non-patrons using the car park will be fined £150.

Popping inside to order I was informed Molly was my server and she kindly offered me a taste of both the Adnams Ghost Ship and the Gadds No 7 that's brewed just up the road. Both were very good but I opted for the former as it was just slightly tastier and fizzier, which suited my mood. It had a thick, creamy head which stayed fresh right to the bottom of the pint.

There is dark panelling everywhere and whilst the pub obviously prides itself on being family friendly it also oozes historic charm. There is not only a full-on indoor pirate playground for the sprogs but also an extensive pirate-themed outside area too. And, to be fair, the pub’s so vast and designed in such a way you hardly hear them.

A sign of the times, you have been warned
A sign of the times, you have been warned
Captain Digby, near Broadstairs
Captain Digby, near Broadstairs

Having worked up an appetite and listened to reader’s requests for details on the food as often as possible I scoured the menu.

I opted to start with a garlic bread and cheese which was fantastic, ciabatta might not be everyone’s idea of the best base for this treat but I really enjoyed it. I followed up with a tuna/sweetcorn jacket potato. This was also good, though the skin did taste a little sweet, as though it might have been coated in honey – the salad that came with it, served in a small colander, was fresh and tangy.

There is a stack of seating, both inside and out, and the place must be mobbed on a sunny Saturday. Inside I bumped into a couple of Sky engineers installing cabling so it seems the current three screens I spotted may be well be increasing in number.

The main feature inside is dark wood panelling
The main feature inside is dark wood panelling
There are pirate-themed play areas both inside and outside at the Captain Digby
There are pirate-themed play areas both inside and outside at the Captain Digby

I did see a fruit machine but there is no pool table or darts – it really is family orientated, so much so that I noticed there is a toilet specifically for children. As a side note I think the height of the picnic table benches is also set specially for children, or at least my back thought this when I got up to leave!

The adult facilities were clean, tidy and fresh smelling with the usual advertising posters we have come to expect. There’s also a massive car to match the size of the venue, just make sure you heed the captain’s warning and buy something from the pub.

This is a full on family pub that is proud to cater for the masses and you can’t deny it does offer some spectacular seaside views.

Town pub reopened after 34 years under original name

Read more Secret Drinker reviews

Food is served daily from noon to 9pm, or 9.30pm on Saturdays
Food is served daily from noon to 9pm, or 9.30pm on Saturdays

Follow Secret Drinker on Twitter here

There are a sea of picnic tables available to those who want to dine alfresco
There are a sea of picnic tables available to those who want to dine alfresco
Captain Digby is proud to celebrate its clifftop history
Captain Digby is proud to celebrate its clifftop history
The side entrance has hanging baskets either side of the steps
The side entrance has hanging baskets either side of the steps
Captain Digby, established in 1979
Captain Digby, established in 1979

More by this author


Close This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies.Learn More