The Chip Shop
Alex and I studied abroad in London in 2010. In my opinion, it was the best semester of my entire academic career (wistful moment of nostalgia...). British food is infamous for being pretty terrible, but I found it to actually be quite diverse, particularly if you are interested in trying new things like Indian and Portuguese-style peri-peri. Then, of course, there are the characteristic favorites of traditional British cuisine: fish and chips, bangers and mash, tea and scones....
We found a place in Park Slope, Brooklyn, that promises to serve up the best British traditional food west of the Atlantic. The Chip Shop is a small restaurant completely decked out from window to kitchen, floor to ceiling, with posters and photographs and framed newspaper clippings of British...things. Everything! Posters of the Beatles, photos of Her Majesty, Tube signs, currency.... The menu also promises all sorts of British things. Speaking of the menu, they have some good "recession" special pricing, so even if you don't have a Groupon (like we did), the food is surprisingly affordable!
I had a small plate of fish and chips and Alex had a shepherd's pie. I wasn't a big fan of the chips (french fries, to you), which were quite plain and flavorless. I added the traditional malt vinegar, but still they weren't very substantial or tasty. On the other hand, I definitely loved the fish! I'm not sure what fish it was (normally fish and chips dishes use cod or haddock, but sometimes they are different prices) but it was tender with a capital T! The fish meat was clean, white, flaky, juicy, and amazing. This was better than the fish and chips I've had in London!
I think if the trains from my house to Park Slope weren't slightly complicated/multi-transfer, I'd find myself hanging out in The Chip Shop a lot. They pride themselves on being able to fry anything...CHALLENGE ACCEPTED. Next time, I'm coming with things to throw in their fryer!