The UK’s 20 best fish and chip shops right now have been crowned

From Ramsgate to Stonehaven, the Observer has unveiled its pick of the finest chippies in the land

Amy Houghton
Written by
Amy Houghton
Contributing writer
Fish and chips on the beach
Photograph: Shutterstock

When it comes to fish and chips, we Brits have high standards: chips tripled cooked to perfection, crispy ASMR-worthy batter and creamy, herby mushy peas are all components of the ideal newspaper-wrapped dinner. It’s not an easy combination to nail. Done badly, you can be lumped with chewy sticks of potato and soggy, flavourless cod. But done well, paired with salty ocean air and seaside views, it’s arguably the chief dish of British cuisine.

At Time Out, we’ve gathered our own list of the best chippies in the UK and within London. But we’re not the only ones. Now, the Observer has released its list of institutions serving the finest battered fish in all the land. 

Featured among the 20 fish and chip shops was The Carron in Stonehaven, Scotland, where legend has it the Scottish delicacy of a deep fried Mars bar was born. Most of the picks were, predictably, by the coast, but despite its reputation for sub-par fish n chips, one London chippie made the cut. Read more about that London chip shop here.  

The list included Cheeky Mahajara, a mobile chippy in the West Midlands dishing up fish in a spiced batter and chips in a paneer and veggie masala gravy, and Caersws Fish Bar in Powys, Wales, which offers its own twists in the form of kombucha-tempura cockles, Welsh rarebit chips or elderflower fritters (as well as the simple classics).

There was also Shakey Shakey Fish Bar in Ramsgate, known for being one of the first chippies to offer a full vegan and gluten-free menu, and Ship Deck in Caerphilly, which was recently crowned the best fish n chip shop in the country at the National Fish and Chips Awards. Read on to find out the rest of the Observer’s favourites.

The 20 best fish and chip shops in the UK, according to the Observer

  • Marlboro, 46 St Thomas Street, Weymouth DT4 8AW
  • Middle Street Fish Bar, 78 Middle Street, Deal CT14 6HL
  • Downstairs at No 1, 1 New Street, Cromer NR27 9HP
  • Lighthouse Fisheries of Flamborough, High Street, Flamborough YO15 1JX
  • Shakey Shakey Fish Bar, 75 High Street, Ramsgate CT11 9RJ
  • Gower Seafood Hut, Southend Gardens, Promenade Terrace, Mumbles SA3 4DS
  • Magpie Café, 14 Pier Road, Whitby YO21 3PU
  • Anstruther Fish Bar, ​​42-44 Shore Street, Anstruther KY10 3AQ
  • Fish Central, 149-155 Central Street, King Square, London EC1V 8AP
  • Chips @ No 8, 6 Clifton Road, Prestwich M25 3HQ
  • The Cod’s Scallops, Nottingham and Birmingham
  • Colmans Fish and Chips, 176-186 Ocean Road, South Shields NE33 2JQ
  • Ship Deck, Newport Road, Trethomas, Caerphilly CF83 8BR
  • Cheeky Maharaja, West Midlands
  • Harbour Lights, Arwenack Street, Falmouth TR11 3LH
  • John Long’s, 39 Athol Street, Belfast BT12 4GX
  • Frankie’s Fish and Chips, Brae, Shetland ZE2 9QJ
  • Maggie’s Café, 8-9 Rock-a-Nore Road, Hastings TN34 3DW
  • The Carron, 1 Allardice Street, Stonehaven AB39 2BN
  • Caersws Fish Bar, Station Road, Caersws, Powys SY17 5EQ

Read more about the choices on the Observer website here. 

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