New management and menus at The White Horse Hotel

Two dishes of food on a table with a class of cider, with a children's climbing frame in the background

The White Horse Hotel in Leiston has a large beer garden with a climbing frame and a boules piste area - Credit: The White Horse Hotel

The team at The White Horse Hotel in Leiston are hoping for runaway success this year, following the recruitment of a new head chef and new general manager, and an extensive refurbishment of the kitchen. 

Troy Johnson, who started working as general manager of The White Horse last November, said: “Having worked in Southwold, Dunwich and Lowestoft, I am familiar with the industry and the Suffolk coast, including all the local produce.” 

He added: “We have also had a new head chef take over the kitchen this month who is very local. Having spent 11 years as a head chef in Orford, he is also familiar with the surrounding areas and high quality produce. 

A restaurant with wooden floor and part exposed brick walls with tables and chairs and a wood-burning stove

The relaxed dining area with wood-burning stove - Credit: The White Horse Hotel

“He has made some brand new menus for us that use all locally sourced ingredients. As we have not long reopened, we are both, along with the owners and all the staff, very excited to be serving such good food.” 

The current owners bought the Station Road hotel in 2018 and have put a lot of work into modernising the building, with some of the bedrooms being updated just recently.  

There are 13 bedrooms, with single, double, twin and family occupancy available. 

The restaurant serves breakfast seven days a week and lunch and dinner five days a week. 

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New food menus are now available, including a brasserie menu, bar menu, children’s menu and Sunday menu.  

The recent refurbishment of the kitchen has led to food service being more efficient. 

There’s a relaxed restaurant area with a wood-burning stove where you can enjoy your food, as well as a smaller area called The Snug.  

At the bar, there's an extensive selection of drinks to choose from.  

A sofa with two union jack cushions

A smaller area of the restaurant called The Snug - Credit: The White Horse Hotel

Outside is a large beer garden where you can drink and dine. The garden includes a children’s climbing frame and a boules piste area. 

During the coronavirus pandemic, the business responded by keeping hotel rooms open for key workers and offered takeaway meals and home delivery. 

Looking to the future, the team at The White Horse are planning to run theme nights at the hotel, such as murder mystery events, smugglers nights, quizzes and comedy nights.  

Troy said: “There will also be competitions to come, with some exciting prizes.” 

Refurbishment work is set to continue on the hotel rooms, and the owners are in the process of seeking planning permission to convert a barn into extra rooms with disabled access. 

The conversion, if permitted, would also increase the size of the kitchen and restaurant areas.  

In addition, an outside wood-fired pizzeria and barbecue kitchen, for dining in and taking away, would be built.

To celebrate the 2022 reopening, The White Horse Hotel would like to offer all customers 40% off food on Wednesdays and Thursdays using code ‘reopening22’. Booking is required. Please quote code at time of booking. Discount given will be up to the value of £10 per person. Offer ends on Thursday February 17.  

On Saturday, February 12, the venue will be holding a Valentine’s Day dinner. There will be a free glass of Prosecco with every main meal from 5.30pm to 9pm. There will also be some lovely Valentine’s specials on offer.  

OAP lunches will be back on, on Friday lunchtimes, costing £10 for two courses.  

Visit The White Horse Hotel on Station Road, Leiston. For more information, call 01728 830694.