Giggers Green Road, Aldington
TN25 7BY Ashford, Kent
In a 300 year old cottage in the Kentish woods, Sæl Projects by British chef Tobyn Excell hosts SixSeats, an intimate rural dining experience connecting people with landscape.
Once a month we open up the cottage to 6 guests to join us for dinner at our kitchen table for an evening of natural wines, genuine old-school hospitality, and creative food from the wildlife in the marshes, woods and coastline surrounding us, where we rediscover forgotten ingredients and unearth buried methods.
The menu is an expression of the landscape, and evolves right up to the last moment as the season changes every day. Here's one of our previous menus:
Cleavers cream soda
Scarlet elf cups, pheasant liver, ramson fruits
Smoked mussel tart, lesser celandine
Hogweed, milk, preserved flowers
Mutton tartar, melilot, ramson
Whelks, rosehip, barley
Potatoes and hogweed seeds
A broth of wildlife from the marshes
Chicory, Romney hogget, wild chervil
Duck from the village, bilberries, turnip
Duck hearts, rosewater, rhubarb root
Sussex ox in butterscotch, lady’s smock
Dulse ice cream, cherry plum blossom, mugwort
Chequer berry & chestnut
For each edition of SixSeats, Sæl Projects collaborates with a guest wine importer to curate our drinks. The winemakers they support produce lesser-known artisanal, authentic wines which are terroir focused, follow low intervention principles, and truly let the fruit and vineyard speak for itself. Previous curators include Modal Wines, Honey Spencer, RoLand Wines UK, Basket Press Wines, and Wines Under The Bonnet.
Here's what some of our recent guests said about the SixSeats experience:
"The most inspirational meal of the year"
"beyond passion, it's like inventing your own language" (@claudiowithachanceofmeatballs)
"Sael Projects is a love letter to Kent written in ink and paper harvested here. You won’t find a more down to earth experience than dining in a place that challenges the preconceptions of British cuisine in such ways. SP is crafted with knowledge of the land woven into Tobyn’s passion for food and expert technique. An intricate menu is made simple by the homely environment provided by the Excells and their humble vibe. This could easily be the most pretentious dining experience in which someone schools you on their findings but instead it feels like a lifelong friend sharing their weekly harvest around the fire— an experience so genuinely human it keeps you wanting more. " @hola_silver
"Tasty pieces of art... I felt like I was visiting old friends" @mliavaag