Proper fish & chips from award-winning Brit chip shop
worth flying 4000 miles for
What’s the first thing us ex-pat Brits do as soon as we get “home”? Eat proper fish and chips, of course.
And so, the minute we arrived back in lovely Luton, hubby and I headed straight to The Wigmore Fish & Chips Restaurant in Stopsley.
We had vague memories of the takeaway chippy here from our days of living in Luton, and first heard about the new restaurant when it was recommended on Facebook (thanks Pauline). We later learned from our friends Paula and Del that it had won several awards for its fish and chips, which made us even more determined to check out the plaice (sorry, place!)
The restaurant is located in the former Wigmore library building, and the decor tastefully reflects this history with old leather-bound books neatly stacked on tall shelves. The bar is well stocked and the modern kitchen is open, with a traditional chip shop style counter, so you can even watch your fish being fried if you wish.
We ordered our food and drinks at the bar, then grabbed a table while everything was being freshly cooked. We'd looked forward to this moment for so long, having been bitterly disappointed by "British-style fish & chips" in the States - no, they're really not! Luckily, the wait wasn’t long and definitely worth it, as we were soon served two plates loaded with proper cod and chips, hot from the fryer. The portions, even my “small” serving, were very generous, almost American size. Our cod was coated in the most amazing batter - so light, not hard but still crunchy. Wow - these were the best fish and chips we’d ever tasted!
I indulged myself even further by making a chip butty (sandwich to our American readers) with thickly sliced bread, and enjoyed a lovely cup of tea poured from a rather cute Denby-style stoneware teapot.
Just then, the owner Barbara stopped by our table to say hello. She explained that The Wigmore is a family affair; her husband still runs the takeaway chippy, just a few doors away, while Barbara and her sons manage the restaurant, which opened last year. “We are here 7 days a week," she told us, “It’s hard work but we enjoy doing it.”
The fabulous fish and chips filled me up quite nicely, but hubby still had room for dessert. Barbara presented her homemade cherry cheesecake with ice cream. I sampled a spoonful before hubby polished it off, and agreed it was absolutely delicious.
Apart from their award-winning fish and chips, The Wigmore also serves Sunday roasts, afternoon tea and all-day brunch. The menu features gluten-free items, as well as a selection of traditional Greek dishes. With such a variety of choices, this is not your typical chippy at all. The owners are environmentally responsible too, ensuring all their fish comes from sustainable sources, composting their packaging, and using LED bulbs to reduce the carbon footprint. The whole space is modern, light and airy, with chic finishes, and a very nice ladies’ loo (I firmly believe you can tell a lot about a restaurant by the quality of the toilets!).
With friendly staff, great service and fantastic food, it’s easy to see (and taste) why this fish restaurant has been voted one of the best in Britain. And yes, I’d certainly fly 4000 miles for another chip butty here.