We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Try the tasting menu”
Review of Sundial

Reserve with OpenTable
Sundial is not available for your requested time. Choose another time, or search restaurants with availability.
The time you selected has already passed.
Ranked #1 of 10 Restaurants in Herstmonceux
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: US$41 - US$164
Cuisines: French
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Dining options: After-hours, Reservations
Dining style: Casual Elegant
Description: The Sundial is a privately owned, relaxed and chic French restaurant with spectacular views of the South Downs in East Sussex. The Sundial’s à-la-carte and seasonal menus as well as its cuisine and ambience are typically French. Our restaurant in East Sussex is perfect for a meal with family and friends or an intimate dinner for two, the Sundial’s lounge bar, French restaurant and private dining room provide a flexible combination for parties, business meetings, seminars, wedding venues and group events for up to 60 people. Our restaurant can cater for upto 150 people as a wedding venue. If you´re looking for a Fine Dining French restaurant in East Sussex, or anywhere in Sussex, you won´t find a finer French restaurant!. Our French restaurant has a Civil wedding License offering you the perfect wedding venue in East Sussex. Restaurant also has a large car park with 16 parking spaces.
Reviewed 28 June 2015

This was our third annual visit after the Eastbourne tennis finals. As usual, a warm welcome by Mary was followed by solicitous but not overbearing service.

Having tried the two alternative menus previously, we thought we'd opt for the tasting menu at £58. Although the dishes will change according to season and availability, we were very happy with the five courses offered by chef Vincent

An amuse-bouche of crayfish mousse was light and creamy with a well judged acidity.

Lobster salad tian had succulent, sweet shellfish perched on a macedoine of vegetables bound in mayonnaise, Dressed with micro leaves and decorated with border of avocado slices and dots of mayonnaise and balsamic, it has a decidedly retro look but was none the worse for that.

A seared scallop was beautifully fresh, with a caramelised crust and soft, delicate flesh. The red pepper and tomato based sauce went well with the seafood. A cube of firm risotto made with a speciality Chinese rice and flavoured with squid ink looked odd on the plate but tasted delicious

A sea bass fillet had crispy skin and firm flakes of moist flesh. The saffron sauce provided an appropriate foil for the fish and was not overwhelming. However, the vegetables were the familiar macedoine, this time warm. Nevertheless, the combinations worked well overall

A refreshing gin and tonic sorbet proved a refreshing palate cleanser. Why have so many restaurants offering tasting menus given up serving them as an intermediate course?

A main course of veal medallion was flavoursome and well seasoned but would have benefitted with slightly less cooking. his was easily forgiven once we sampled the accompanying unctuous sweetbread which was precisely timed and meltingly delicious. Carrots, cauliflower and red cabbage retained their crispness and a rich veal stock, madeira and truffle sauce finished this rich dish perfectly.

An alternative main course of turbot featured a well cooked and generously portioned pan fried fillet perched on green and white asparagus, suitably al dente.

Next came a playful pre - dessert lollipop of raspberry mousse covered with chocolate

A dessert of poached peach, fresh strawberries and a vanilla foam topped with a thin disc of crisp caramel proved a light, well constructed dessert with harmonious flavours and textures.

Overall, this was a highly enjoyable meal from a husband and wife team who have succeeded in attracting a loyal, local clientele, with others from further afield like ourselves.

    • Value
    • Service
    • Food
5  Thank ddfoodie2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Write a ReviewReviews (271)
Traveller rating
Traveller type
Time of year

151 - 155 of 271 reviews

Reviewed 14 June 2015

Our son and daughter in law took us here for a treat. It was wonderful. The food was sublime, service excellent, staff lovely and the members of the family were very friendly. We were so impressed we shall visit again as soon as possible.

    • Value
    • Service
    • Food
5  Thank JuliaSmart
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 June 2015

A friend recently recommended the Sundial so I took my husband there for a birthday lunch treat. It was a lovely day so we sat outside, which was very pleasant. We were offered drinks whilst we looked at the menus. There are a couple of choices, we chose the three course £27 menu, although there is a more expensive one that includes a lot of truffles and fois gras. We both had the prawn and smoked salmon starter, the duck main course and then the trio of deserts. In addition, we were presented with a complimentary crayfish amuse bouchée. The crayfish dish was superb and a lovely, unexpected treat. Our starters were packed full of flavour and seasoned very well. The duck was well cooked, as were the accompanying vegetables - no soggy veg! The highlight was the trio of deserts that included a toiler one mouse, a pineapple and coconut ice cream and a raspberry pannacotta. All were fabulous - the raspberry flavour was intense and cleared the palate. The mouse was a treat ten the ice cream was beautiful. The portion sizes were well judged as we felt as though we had eaten enough by the end but had not over indulged. We had coffee to finish and this came with some petit fours, again homemade and fabulous.
The service was very attentive and our food came quickly and was cleared away in good time. The only criticism that I could think of is that nobody asked us how our food was until we were presented with our bill. It would also have been nice to have been told what flavour the various bread rolls were, as they were various flavours and we had no idea what we were picking up. However, that is being very picky. Overall, we very much enjoyed our food, the menu was well priced and the service was extremely good.

    • Value
    • Service
    • Food
2  Thank LW_1115
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 June 2015

Quiet, relatively formal restaurant of a very particular type you get in village settings. Nice bar area for pre-dinner drink, the quietly spoken waitress/maitre d'/owner did everything herself which was extraordinary. Everything was beautifully managed and the courses, the amuses bouches, the topping up of water/wine was absolutely spot on.

Food was good. Was it top notch? Possibly not but it tried very hard. Asparagus soup was exquisite, sea bass was fine but dish was too salty. Cheeses were ok, amuses bouches and petit fours were a nice touch but nothing particularly standout.

Overall really nice evening in a really relaxing setting. Good value too for the overall experience.

    • Value
    • Service
    • Food
3  Thank libero7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 May 2015 via mobile

We went here tonight and I have to say I've never tasted food as delicious as I have tonight.
From the moment we stepped in Mary was the perfect host. The ambience of thd place was surreal. I've never eaten in such a relaxing place before.
The choice of food was excellent and what we ate was incrediable. Every dish was presented in a beautiful way and the flavours were just out of this world.
There were so many drinks to choose from too.
To be totally honest I am stuck for words to say because every thing about this restaurant was just so perfect.
I would highly recommend this restaurant and if you only go once in your life it will certainly be the dining experience.

4  Thank Linda G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

Travellers who viewed Sundial also viewed

Hailsham, East Sussex
Herstmonceux, Hailsham
Hailsham, East Sussex
Hailsham, East Sussex
Herstmonceux, Hailsham

Been to Sundial? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing