Chef owner of the Acre Group including The Small Holding and Birchwood
Will Devlin is chef owner of the Acre Group, a family of restaurants in Kent and Sussex including The Small Holding and Birchwood.
The Small Holding has a Michelin Green Star for sustainable gastronomy and is number 25 in Harden’s Top 100 UK Restaurants. The 36-cover restaurant was voted the best restaurant in Kent at the Taste of Kent Awards 2022 and is set in one acre of land, permitting a unique connection between farm and table. Growing, foraging, and cooking the best ingredients is at the core of The Small Holding, with daily changing menus, using home-reared and home-grown ingredients from the farm, which is less than 10ft from the kitchen.
Over 180 varieties of vegetables and fruits are grown including Broccoli ‘Red Blaze’, Cauliflower ‘Graffiti’, Cucumber ‘Passandra’, Radish ‘Viola’, Runner Beans ‘Scarlet Emperor’ and Courgette ‘Midnight’. Native breed Large Black pigs, chickens and ducks roam the farm and sheep for hogget and mutton graze less than half a mile away.
The menu is defined by hyper-seasonal ingredients with a focus on the farm’s own produce, but undefined by the number of courses or choice. There is no formal menu at The Small Holding. Instead, guests are offered a multi-taste dining experience featuring the best ingredients on that day from the farm and local suppliers. Vegetables and fruits from the farm, harvested within hours of guests arriving, homemade charcuterie and zero waste animal cookery from the farm’s own livestock is the focus. The Small Holding works directly with growers, farmers and fishermen and the kitchen team forage in the nearby hedgerows and woodland.
“Will Devlin’s restaurant shows no sign of slowing down, ‘a truly sensational experience’ is one fan’s heartfelt comment. The level of ingenuity generated by a kitchen on turbo drive, fuelled by its own small holding, hen coop and piggery is prodigious.” The Good Food Guide