Dining out in St Leonards
This is a short list of some of our favourite restaurants, we recommend them based on our experience of their food and also on their service. There is no particular order, special restaurants are on top and more casual dining further down. We rotate the order on a regular basis and we update whenever we find another gem.
There are of course loads of other great places to eat and drink that we haven’t tried yet and we would love to hear from our guests about them. Most of the recommended restaurants are within easy walking distance of The Knowle, all are small independent restaurants with limited seating, so booking is recommended.
Many restaurants close Sunday afternoon until Wednesday or Thursday (even bank holiday Mondays!!!).
Some of the links below will take you to the website, others don't have a website so will link to an independent review or possibly a Facebook page.
We have updated our restaurant list to include individual restaurant policies for dogs, a request from non guests, where it isn't mentioned please phone or email them to check, St Leonards and Hastings are very dog friendly town.
Italian food cooked to perfection with seafood as a speciality. The courgette crisps are recommended for nibbles everything else to follow is also recommended, including the tiramisu. This is a small restaurant with owners running front of house and owner/chef in Kitchen which helps to ensure consistently great food and service.
Open for lunch and dinner from Wednesday to Sunday lunchtime.
Galleria allow small, medium and well behaved dogs.
One of our favourite restaurants, St Clements offers delicious food, great well priced wines, outstanding service. During the busy summer months of July and August, St Clements is usually a calm and friendly oasis. They offer many local seafood dishes including fresh skate wing, their cauliflower starter is outstanding the fillet steak is as good as it gets.
Sundays they offer a Sunday roast.
There is also an early bird menu (also offered lunch times) of two courses for £13.50, I had to contact them to confirm that the price on their website was correct!
Open from lunch time Thursday to lunchtime Sunday.
St Clements allows one dog in the restaurant during the lunchtime service but not in the evening. Because only one dog is allowed for lunches it must be declared/booked in advance.
Farmyard offers farm to table food and great Sunday roasts, though getting in for early sitting is recommended to get the best bits. They are famous for their natural wines... add to that they do clever stuff with vegetables ... there is a cauliflower dish with kimchi that I have been attempting to reverse engineer since Christmas.
Open every day. There is a weekday lunch menu – choose any 3 from the day’s selection of small plates along with a glass of red, white or orange wine for £18.50 all in.
We do not know their policy on dogs.
Liban Coast is located on our Marina Parade - serving a mixture of Lebanese and Syrian food. They produce tasty, fresh and healthy meals, a great choice for vegans and vegetarians... we rate the platters, those wishing to have an alcoholic beverage are welcome to bring their own, either from the well stocked shop next door or from your own personal collection, modest corkage fee.
Open Wednesday to Saturday 12 to 9pm and Sunday 12-4pm.
Boatyard is the sister restaurant of Farmyard, located to the rear of the Heist street food market on Norman Road it is a comfortable restaurant which takes reservations. This restaurant specialises in seafood, small plates and natural wines. Although this is a seafood restaurant, they do a good steak and like Farmyard their vegetables are often rather amazing.
Open every day except Wednesdays.
Dogs are welcome.
Graze on Grand have changed their offerings from restaurant to wines, food shop and small plates or light meals. Located on the sea front, close to London Road junction, enjoys wonderful views over the sea, a friendly place to have a drink and eat something light. Open Wednesday to Saturday midday to 9pm or 10pm Sundays mid day till 5pm.
The Crown Pub Located in the heart of Hastings old Town the Crown is a 30 minute walk along the promenade from St Leonards, or a 40 minute walk from The Knowle, you can of course drive or take a taxi but pre booking is recommended. A welcoming friendly pub with great food so well worth the walk or drive. There is a varied menu featuring small dishes such as home made fish finger sandwiches with proper potato chips or larger extravagant but sustainable dishes for example roast fillet of pollock, smoked cauliflower, butter bean puree, basil and cauliflower leaf fritter, basil oil. The Crown is a perfect place for lunch or dinner after exploring Hastings Old Town.
Open 7 days a week, serving food 12–4pm, 5–9pm.
Dogs are welcome but there is a paws on the floors policy.
A new addition to St Leonards Marina area for 2023. Columbo 16 offers an inspiring fusion brunch with some traditional Sri Lankan options, by night contemporary curries, short eats* and desserts intended for sharing. Their dishes are family recipes with a modern twist. We asked about the providence of their meat and ingredients and we were told it was high welfare, local where possible and key ingredients imported fresh from Sri Lanka. Interesting decor and great service.
*We had to google short eats. "rolls filled with vegetables, meat, and egg; patties that resemble empanadas stuffed with potatoes and fish; and curry rotis, in which vegetables or meat are packed tightly between flatbread and browned in a pan".
Their breakfast/brunch offering might be our favourite in St Leonards.
Open Wednesday 10am to 4pm and 10am to 10pm Thursday to Saturday.
Dogs are welcome in the coffee house and take away and in the outdoor seating area, dogs are not allowed in the actual restaurant.
Great Italian restaurant on the sea front, caters for ALL tastes with some great pizza, pasta, vegetarian, vegan, fish and meat options… more importantly they seem to cook it all perfectly!!! Add to that attentive well trained staff, occasional live music. The restaurant is larger than it looks with seating on the ground floor, basement and outside (weather permitting).
With a great menu options to keep kids and parents happy, Bella Vista is one of the better known restaurants in St Leonards so it can get really busy during school holidays with a large proportion of well behaved children.
Best of all they are open every day of the week.
Bella Vista welcome well behaving dogs in the terrace outside. Dogs are not allowed in the main restaurant, Occasionally they may consider allowing a well behaved dog in the lower level of the restaurant, phone to check as this is discretionary.
A great little tapas restaurant hidden up a side street in the heart of St Leonards. Wonderful food in a friendly atmosphere.
Menu changes daily, you tell them what you cannot or will not eat and they bring food until you say 'stop'. Some recent guests told us they loved it and especially loved not having to decide what to eat.
Open Thursday to Saturday from 7pm.
St Leonards newest restaurant opened July 2023 and is located on the Kings Road, nearby the station. A restaurant and bar located in the former Kings road antiques market, the building has been completely renovated, revealing an amazing glass atrium which had been hidden by a false ceiling. This large open space has a been tastefully decorated including adding a bar and open kitchen area, it feels vibrant and friendly. The bar offers a selection of wines, beers and cocktails, our negroni cocktails were delicious, service was attentive. Focus of the restaurant is food is farm to table with much of the produce supplied from high welfare where possible local farms, their head chef has a small holding which provides a lot of the delicious produce. The menu changes regularly depending on what's fresh and delicious.
Thursday - 6pm - 12am
Friday and Saturday 12pm - 12 am
Sunday - 12pm - 6pm
Located on Kings road, Remy’s offers a fusion of Anglo Filipino food… their breakfasts are epic and their Sunday roasts are legendary. We are still working our way through the menu, but with the great food, friendly service it makes our recommendation list. It’s worth a visit just for the amazing art nouveau windows, ceilings and decor.
Open 11am Thursday to 4pm Sunday.
Remy's allow well behaved dogs.
Authentic Nepalise food, consistently great curries, lots of vegan options, balanced flavourful dishes, attentive service conveniently located just off London Road on the Grande Parade. Open every day including Sunday!
Located on Grand Parade, overlooking the sea Lava is the second Sri Lankan restaurant to open in St Leonards in 2023. Food is authentic and delicious, they have a shared meal for two for £12 each offering rice, curry, daal, parippu and poppadom. Their dosa masala (so rare to find these outside of London) are delicious. Portions aren't huge so plenty of room for dessert if you like that.
Open Tuesday - Sunday 10am - 3pm, 6pm - 10:30pm
Well behaved dogs are welcome.
The Hoxley A near neighbourhood restaurant in the Bohemia quarter, serving freshly prepared Thai food, really nice well priced wines and friendly service. Open Wednesday to Saturday 6pm to 10pm.
Sugarpie Honeybuns is also located in the Bohemia quarter, just around the corner from The Knowle on London Road. An open and friendly space (with interesting ceilings). They offer excellent lunches, amazing coffee and possibly the best cakes in town! Fridays they offer dinner too.
Open Monday to Saturday 10 till 4pm. Fridays 10 till 4pm AND 6.30pm to 9.30pm, Sunday 11am to 3pm.
Technically (because it is on the Hastings side of the Pier) in Hastings, Wavey bar opened summer of 2023 within in the Courtyard of Sourcepark (the world's largest underground skateboard park, yes, it seems Hastings is a bit of a skateboarding centre of excellence!). The Courtyard is a collection of restaurants selling casual foods such as pizza, pasta, burgers, fries and drinks but then there is Wavey bar. The restaurant is small, only a few tables. The food is divine - small plates including fresh oysters with a delicious dressing, watermelon feta and olive salad, skate wing with black olive tapenade and chickpeas but our absolute favourite was the monkfish crudo with ado blanco and sea herbs... !
Open Tuesday to Saturday 12pm to 9pm
Sundays 12pm to 6 pm
The Courtyard is located in a sunken but sunny court yard a short stroll from Hastings Pier (yes, technically Hastings but walkable) and adjacent to Sourcepark (the largest underground skatepark in the WORLD). Here there is a collection of restaurants selling casual foods, pizza, pastas, burgers, fries and drinks. Live music sometimes
Located half way down George Street in Hastings is this authentic Moroccan restaurant, delicious aromatic curry (the lamb and chickpea tagine melts in your mouth), gently spiced and perfectly seasoned coconut daal with rice or couscous. Desserts are in-house and change regularly. A visit to the Marrakech Artisan is highly recommended. Open Friday, Saturday and Sunday 11am to 9pm, Thursdays 11am to 5pm.
The Master fish bar Generous portions of chips and fish (pennies extra for fresh rather than frozen) and a gluten free batter option. Open 12 till 9pm seven days a week.
Street food with a collection of restaurants and bars, there is sure to be something you love - burgers, Japanese, Thai, Kebabs and a microbrewery. Find your seat then order your food and your drinks from individual counters, when your food is ready for collection a buzzer lets you know, this can mean that one person in your party gets their food and has finished eating before the others have received theirs which is not for everyone. This is casual dining in a large open plan setting, a very popular food destination but some people find the open plan a bit loud. Street food restaurants do not take reservations as great space to meet up with friends and relax.
Open every day except Wednesdays.
Dogs are allowed.
Goat Ledge Located right on the beachside promenade, one of the best places to watch the sun go down, with or without sundowners - you can sit on the beach or book one of their lovely little drinks ‘sheds’. Great for drinks and light snacks, often has live music at weekends. Booking recommended. Goat Ledge don't seem to advertise their opening times or days but in summer months if the weather isn't blowing a storm (when they will close) it is dafe to assume they are open.
Dogs are allowed.
Half Man Half Burger Famous burger restaurant on the South coast, if you love burgers and value high welfare meats but can cope with a brioche burger bun, this place is well worth a visit, eat in or take away and eat at the beach. Open Monday to Thursday 5pm to 9 pm, Friday to Sunday 12 till 9pm.
Pizzerelli Right beside Half man Half Burger on Marina Court is Pizzarelli Pizza, most of their pizzas are take away or delivery but they also have a cosy sit down area. Delicious pizzas, great wines, good service all with a cosy ambiance and colouring books and pencils for kids. What's not to like? Website unclear about opening times, we think it is open every day.
Dogs are allowed.
Maggie’s Cafe tucked away behind the fisherman’s huts at Rock-a-Nore in Hastings reputedly has the best fish and chips. We don’t think that it tastes quite as good unless eaten on the beach, but be warned Hastings seagulls know this too and will ambush the innocent! Open Monday-Wednesday 12-4pm, Thursday, Friday 12-8pm, Sunday 8.30am - 11am and 12 - 4pm