Sportsman or somewhere else?
My brother and his partner are coming over from the States in September. We'd like to go to an excellent restaurant in an attractive area for walking and/or sightseeing within a fairly easy train ride from London. The Sportsman sounds great for food but the immediate surroundings don't very attractive - though I know Whitstable is pretty.
Any other suggestions?
Go to the Sportsman! You can walk, or bike, across Crab and Winkle Way from Whitstable to Canterbury for an activity. Have lunch at The Goods Shed and dinner at The Sportsman. Make sure to reserve far in advance for The Sportsman -- the tasting menu is excellent, and so reasonably priced.
Whitstable is perfectly lovely for a day down by the sea, hopefully you'll get nice weather in September.
The only other obvious choice is to go to see Windsor and stop off at the Waterside Inn in Bray.
Go to the Sportsman!
But only if they have the tasting menu available that day. The blackboard menu is OK but not really anything that special (although it will be seasonal and delicious).
Wheeler's Oyster Bar in Whitstable might be a good choice for lunch. It's small and quirky and you will need to reserve. A little further away is the Petit Poisson at Herne Bay which is also open for lunch. I stumbled across it a couple of years back when trawling the internet for local places to eat. Thought it excellent.