4th April 2023

With summer now well underway you might be considering where to stop off for a bite to eat for lunch, well Sam Lawrie from the KMGroup did just that. Below is her review of a cheesy lunch break.

With the beautiful weather we’ve been having, I thought I’d make the most of it and take a walk into town for lunch.

The Cheese Room Botanicals, found just opposite Rochester Castle, seemed like a perfect place to grab a sandwich and take in the views.

I hit a bump in the road, however, when I reached the door and found a ‘closed’ sign hanging in the window.

I should’ve checked online first - who doesn’t Google a restaurant before going out these days?

Luckily for me, its sister spot, the Cheese Room Deli and Cafe, is just a couple of minutes down the High Street, so I headed in that direction instead.

A short, sunny walk later and I was at the cafe which, thank goodness, is open on Mondays and was bustling with customers.

Sadly, I was flying solo this lunchtime - but let’s be honest, doesn’t an hour out in the sunshine, enjoying a lovely lunch in the peace and quiet, actually sound blissful?

Still, I wanted to get a good taste of the place so I ordered a few different things - for review purposes, of course.

The board above the counter listed several cheesy bites, from sandwiches to sharing boards, quesadillas and salads.

I went for two of the toasties, the classic and the triple cheese with sweet chilli, along with a very tempting Biscoff blondie that was staring at me from the glass counter.

The server very kindly and patiently went through all the different coffee-free iced drinks, and helped me eventually settle on a berry iced tea.

After a short wait, I strolled back up to the castle grounds, clutching my goodies, and within five minutes found myself a patch of warm grass with Rochester's historic Norman castle as my backdrop.

I popped my headphones on, pressed play on my favourite podcast (currently Brett Goldstein’s Films to be Buried With, if anyone’s interested) and carefully unpacked my lunch.

I tried the classic toastie first, which is a sourdough bread stuffed with strong Wookey Hole cheddar cheese, fresh tomato, red onion, and basil.

It was, quite frankly, delicious.

It came with a side of tangy, salsa-like ketchup, which was equally tasty. It’s just a shame I’d slopped most of it all over the takeaway box on my walk.

Thanks to my desire to sample a couple of different things, I couldn’t actually manage all of it. I saved half of each sandwich for later, and can confirm they make pretty tasty leftovers too.

It feels good to support a local business, especially in these tough times, but it helps when the food really hits the spot too.

If you want to catch a few hours of nice weather and appreciate some of Rochester’s finest landmarks, I recommend stopping off here for some cheese-filled delights to take with you.

Many thanks to Sam Lawrie and KMGroup for letting us feature this blog.


Food: The classic toastie was perfect, the triple cheese could do with more spice but was still good. Lots of options on the menu, including vegan cheese. ****

Drink: Nice to have an iced drink on a hot day, plus they offer takeaway double G&Ts - what’s not to love? ****

Decor: The exterior could do with a touch up, but inside it’s cosy and welcoming. ****

Staff: Attentive, friendly and happy to talk through the menu. *****

Price: The toasties are large and the blondie was easily shareable, so I didn’t think my bill of £16.25 was too bad. ****