Ask anyone to name their top classic British dishes, and fish and chips will likely feature as one of the options. It’s said that the very first fish and chips shop in England was founded by a Jewish immigrant named Joseph Malin, who opened a London stall in the 1860s. The delicacy subsequently spread in popularity throughout the United Kingdom, and to Commonwealth nations such as Australia and New Zealand. In Singapore, you’ll find many eateries offering their take on traditional fish and chips – from outdoor chippies to posh restaurants to casual pubs where you can enjoy it with a few pints of ice-cold beer. Here are some of our top recommendations.
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Once a humble hawker stall at Maxwell Food Centre, Lad & Dad now operates out of a full-service restaurant on the ground floor of Tanjong Pagar Plaza. Expect plentifully sized portions of ASMR-worthy, beer-battered Atlantic haddock with straight-cut chips, a dollop of mushy peas and gherkin tartar sauce, plus plenty of malt vinegar on the side. You can also visit their sister outlet – Lad & Co. – along Tanglin Road, which has a calming ambience courtesy of a lush and breezy patio.
7 Tanjong Pagar Plaza, #01-108, Singapore 081007, +65 9247 7385
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The perennially popular Greenwood Fish Market – which has locations at Bukit Timah and Sentosa – is a go-to spot for many to get their fix of fresh seafood. One of their standout dishes is the fish and chips. Here, you can choose your desired fish from options including barramundi, snapper and black cod. The slab of tender fish is dipped in a special batter before frying, and is plated with shoestring fries and a lemon wedge.
34 & 38 Greenwood Avenue, Singapore 289236, +65 6467 4950
31 Ocean Way, #01-04/05, Singapore 098375, +65 6262 0450
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If you’re in the mood for fish and chips and feel like splurging a little, then why not pay a visit to The English House by Marco Pierre White – one of the city-state’s best restaurants specialising in classic British nosh. The dish here consists of fresh and flaky beer-battered wild cod that’s been fried to golden-brown perfection. You’ll also get thick and crunchy triple-cooked chips and some creamy tartar sauce for good measure.
28 Mohamed Sultan Road, Singapore 238972, +65 6545 4055
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Picky about the type of fish that goes into your dish? Fret not, for Big Fish Small Fish has you covered. The casual concept offers up to six different varieties to choose from – such as halibut, Alaskan pollock and cod, plus more unconventional options including salmon – which is fried upon order in a light batter. Instead of the standard chips or fries, they offer freshly cooked potato crisps that are great for dipping in the unique selection of sauces: think curry, salted egg and cheese.
Multiple outlets in Singapore.
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For delicious fish and chips in the east, make your way to Pig N Whistle – a British pub that does a great rendition of the dish. It’s made with wild-caught hoki fish from New Zealand – which is dunked in a batter made using their secret recipe – and served with medium-cut fries, a slice of lemon and house-made tartar sauce. The batter is wonderfully crispy, and the fish is moist and flaky with a satisfying bite. Accompany your main with a side of the signature pigs in a blanket.
160 Changi Road, #01-08, Singapore 419728, +65 6969 9811
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This authentic fish and chips eatery, which is located at Balmoral Plaza, has been keeping hungry fans of the dish well-fed since 2010. Sustainably sourced cod and haddock – they also offer halibut and dory – are lightly battered and cooked in a traditional British fryer. The thick-cut chips made from locally grown British potatoes are perfectly fluffy on the inside and crunchy on the outside, and round out the meal perfectly.
271 Bukit Timah Road, #01-02, Singapore 259708, +65 6737 9313
For fish and chips that’s a bit out of the ordinary – visually, at least – make a beeline for SPRMRKT in the Dempsey Hill enclave. The restaurant is known for its special blackened fish and chips: succulent Pacific halibut coated in a jet-black squid ink batter with thin and crispy shoestring fries, a side salad, tartar sauce, tangy kimchi slaw and a lemon wedge. It may not be for the purists, but we reckon it’s just as scrumptious as the traditional version.
8 Dempsey Road, #01-15A, Singapore 247696, +65 8129 8166
Sure, this may be an Irish establishment. But Molly Malone’s – which opened its doors in 1995 and claims to be Singapore’s very first Irish pub – does a perfectly respectable fish and chips. Fresh fillets of white fish come coated in a crackly batter, and are served with thick-cut chips, tartar sauce and a lemon wedge. You can add-on some mushy peas with bacon, and don’t forget to wash everything down the Irish way – that is, with some cold and creamy Guinness.
56 Circular Road, Singapore 049411, +65 6536 2029
Fronted by celebrity chef Gordon Ramsay, Bread Street Kitchen is where you can treat yourself to a high-quality portion of fish and chips. Each helping consists of a thick slab of fish that’s been battered and deep-fried until golden brown, and comes with classic thick-cut chips, mushy peas, tartar sauce and a slice of lemon. The coating shatters as you bite into it, revealing a tender interior that’s sure to leave you wanting more.
10 Bayfront Avenue, #01-81, Singapore 018956, +65 6688 5665
Visit Fish & Chicks – which has outlets across the island – to enjoy a solid and wallet-friendly meal. The joint specialises in giving Western dishes an Asian twist, so you can opt for your battered fish fillet to be generously slathered in the likes of salted egg sauce, chilli crab sauce or mentaiko sauce. The fries here are of the shoestring variety, and you’ll also receive a small mound of coleslaw and some tartar sauce.
Multiple outlets in Singapore.
This article was first published in The Singapore Women’s Weekly.