A plateful at Poppies
A plateful at Poppies

Masters Super Fish, Waterloo

London’s best fish and chips – in the most unprepossessing place you could imagine. Masters looks like it hasn’t been refurbished since rationing ended – you either sit in an utterly soulless room or get takeaway from a sickly green corridor. But this is glorious British food – shattering batter, chips thick as thumbs, fish flaking like strips of pearl. Don’t miss out on the mushy peas or the homemade tartare sauce.

191 Waterloo Rd SE1 8UX, 020 7928 6924; no website

Poppies, Spitalfields

A successful hipster compromise between East End chip shop and 1950s American diner. The girls are on the floor and the boys are at the fryers. The fish was excellent quality (if imperfectly cooked) and the batter is thick and crunchy; chips are pale and fluffy. Jellied eels, from Micks Eel Supply of Billingsgate, are sloppy, meaty and exquisite. Avoid the deep-fried cod’s roe: a fishy hockey puck.

6-8 Hanbury Street E1 6QR, 020 7247 0892; www.poppiesfishandchips.co.uk

Kerbisher & Malt, Brook Green

Kerbisher & Malt retains the easy-going atmosphere of a chippie while raising the standard of the food. There are no soft furnishings – just tiled walls, a hard, slippery floor and clattery metal stools. This was a slightly greasier batter than others on this list but the fish was well-cooked and the extras were superb, especially the pickled onion rings and calamari. A second branch opened recently in Ealing.

164 Shepherds Bush Road W6 7PB, 020 3556 0228; www.kerbisher.co.uk

Olley’s Fish Experience, Herne Hill

Olley’s looks like a 1980s Greek taverna dropped into a Scottish baronial hall: you sit bolt upright on high-backed chairs, fake foliage hangs from the ceiling and dusty spider plants finger the staircase. But the product is considerably better than the average: batter of medium thickness, fish fresh and nicely timed. Shredded iceberg lettuce and woolly tomatoes, which accompany almost everything, have an appealing honesty.

65-69 Norwood Road SE24 9AA, 020 8671 8259; www.olleys.info

Fisher’s, Parsons Green

Reopened after a fire in late 2011, tiny Fisher’s barely seems to have broken its stroke. Fulham High Street has seen several shop closures since the start of the recession, but Fisher’s still packs them in, helped by its proximity to Fulham FC’s football ground. Fish is perfectly cooked and comes with greaseless batter; extras such as butterflied prawns provide a bit of interest. Portions are huge and tend to come in at just under a tenner.

19 Fulham High St SW6 3JH, 020 7371 5555; www.fishersfishandchips.com

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