During my stay in London, the must have on my list was Fish & Chips. Not Mrs. Paul’s or the Gorton Fisherman fish sticks of my childhood. Proper Fish & Chips. Obviously there are many options around town, but we wanted something good and of course cheap. With a little help from my concierge, I found the perfect spot. The Rock & Sole Plaice.
The Rock & Sole Plaice is located on Endell Street in Covent Gardens. Just a quick walk from my hotel and right off the main shopping drag – High Street. Gleaming with anticipation, this short walk seemed like an eternity. Are we there yet? Are we there yet?
I see a corner store front with huge windows and a small line out front. This must be the place. I peak in and see happy diners feasting, but no available seats. Darn, it’s tiny. I’ll never get a seat. Before I know it, a waiter sees me and waives me in. “We have more tables downstairs.” Aaaahhhhh!!!!
Downstairs is full of tourists with an empty table waiting for me. JACKPOT. Now I warn you, this isn’t a fancy restaurant. It’s elbows on the tables, just the way I wanted it. The decor is….let’s say kitchy nautic with a twist of tacky. The walls are painted acqua blue with murals of fish, dolphins and other sea creatures. The piece de resistance, a giant boat coming out of the wall. You read right….A GIANT BOAT.
Just in a nick of time, the waiter appears. The fish & chips options are very simple… large or small….haddock or cod. Small order with cod is my choice. I open my napkin on my lap. Have my fork and knife in hand, and am ready to dig in.
In a blink of an eye, a plate is set down in front of me. This is the small order? Glad I didn’t order the large. The condiments are typical English. Ketchup, tartar sauce and malt vinegar. Now their tartar sauce isn’t the thick goop you find in the states. You know, Hellman’s mayonnaise with relish. This is almost like a sauce full of chopped dill, salt, pepper, lemon, vinegar, capers and relish. I’m not a mayo person, but this, I loved!
I spoon some of this sauce on my plate, squeeze a wedge of lemon over my fish and dig in. The fish was light, moist and airy, with a crunchy coating that wasn’t greasy at all. Absolutely delicious. I LOVE fries and these chips were thick cut, just the way I like them. Dipped in the malt vinegar….H E A V E N.
This SMALL order was so filling, I couldn’t finish. How I wish I could have taken a doggy bag. Sad news. So I step away from my plate and head upstairs to pay the bill – £11.00 ($17.40 US). Mission accomplished!!!!
Happiness, $25 and under.