“There’s a lot more to great fish and chips than Joe Public probably imagines,” says Matt Phillips, owner of Shap Chippy in Shap, Cumbria. “The ratio of water to batter, what temperature you fry it at, how long you cook your fish for, the process of cooking the chips. You can go into five shops which use the same batter but they could produce a very different product.”
If anyone would know, it’s Phillips, reports Jack Rear for The Telegraph. In April, Shap Chippy was named among the 50 best fish and chip shops (technically 60, due to some shops’ scores being tied) in the country, and one of the ten best mobile fish and chip vans, by trade magazine, Fry. This year’s success comes hot on the heels of the business winning second place at The National Fish And Chip Awards 2020.
As it stands, there are around 10,500 fish and chip shops operating in the UK and for many of them the pandemic has proved fruitful. According to data from delivery platform Foodhub released last May, fish and chip orders shot up by 208 per cent since the start of lockdown.
But at a booming time for the trade, what does it take to be the very best of them all?
Fry Magazine’s annual top 50 list is open to all to enter, but the selection process is “in-depth”, according to Reece Head, Fry’s events director. Head explains that the entrants, of which he had several thousand, “did particularly well this year under the working circumstances of the pandemic. With safety for staff and customers paramount, many introduced click and collect ordering through apps and technology, for example.”
One thing that Head is keen to highlight, however, is that the top 50 winners are not ranked; each has its own unique charms.
Source: The Telegraph. Read the full story here
Photo: Matt and Ashley Phillips bought Shap Chippy in 2018 and found great success. Credit: Chris Watt Photography