Former Caprice Holdings CEO returns to London for The Fish & Chip Shop restaurant

By Luke Nicholls

- Last updated on GMT

The best place: The Fish & Chip shop will serve ine and hook-caught cod, plaice, haddock and pollock
The best place: The Fish & Chip shop will serve ine and hook-caught cod, plaice, haddock and pollock
Des McDonald, former chief executive of Caprice Holdings, is coming back to the London restaurant scene with his first solo venture The Fish & Chip Shop opening in Islington next month.

Situated on Upper Street, the 60-cover restaurant will serve fresh, sustainable fish from the British Isles with prices starting at £14.00 for cod, chips and mushy peas.

McDonald, who left Caprice Holdings in 2012 after 18 years with the company, has recruited a team which includes Lee Bull - former head chef of Le Caprice - in the role of executive chef, and Tower Isho - the ex-general manager of J Sheekey - as operations manager.

“In January last year I made the decision to set up my own business, to create and develop my own restaurants,” said McDonald. “The Fish & Chip Shop is the first of these, and I am excited to be working with a first class team to produce the finest sustainable Fish and Chips in London, with a posh twist.”

MCS-approved

The Fish & Chip Shop will serve fresh fish from sources that are approved by the Marine Conservation Society.​ A selection of line and hook-caught cod, plaice, haddock and pollock arrive daily from Brixham, to be grilled, or fried in The Fish & Chip Shop’s own recipe batter, made with local Camden beer.

Diners can sample a range of seafood from the cold bar, including Dorset rock oysters and scallops in the half shell with chilli and garlic to start; followed by main dishes including The Fish & Chip Shop ‘Fish Pie’, baked Portland cock crab and fish curry with rice.  

A signature ‘Butties’ menu is also available, ranging from childhood favourites such as fish fingers with pea puree and chips with curry sauce, through to the more grownup duck egg, asparagus and HP, Lobster bridge roll and shrimp burger with spicy tartar sauce.

Desserts include burnt chocolate cream, rhubarb tart and Irish cider jelly, topped with a choice of Devonshire cream, custard or ice cream.  

Nostalgic feel

Operations manager Isho has devised the wine list, which features five red and five white, including The Fish & Chip Shop’s own Languedoc blend wines, as well as a Rose and two sparkling options. There is also a wide range of bottle and draft beer available including local Camden Hells lager, as well as a selection of soft drinks and classic milkshakes.

Designed by Box 9 Design, The Fish & Chip Shop’s interior pays homage to the traditional British café, with accents of salvaged timber, antique Georgian glass, duck egg blue panelling and burgundy-glazed tiles. Finer details such as the retro brown paper menus and 50’s Ska music playing in the background, further enhance the restaurant’s nostalgic feel.

There are a variety of seating options including vintage leather booths, market-style seating and high stools in front of the fishmonger’s table and hot and cold bars. Diners will be able to watch the action in the kitchen through a glass panel, styled to look like a vintage fish and chip shop window.

A takeaway menu is also on offer at the counter, with prices starting at £10.50 for cod and chips. Both the takeaway service and restaurant will be open daily from 12pm to 11pm. McDonald also revealed future plans for fish and chip master classes, BYOB nights and live music at the restaurant.

Related topics: Business, Venues, People, Restaurants

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