We are very lucky to have the very best fish and chip shop in the UK right here in Cheltenham and that’s not just my opinion, Simpsons were actually awarded this title recently at The National Fish & Chip Awards 2016.
In fact, they’ve had a rather busy and exciting start to 2016 because their restaurant has also had a refurb, so they threw a party to celebrate their relaunch; and thanks to good-timing, it also turned into one almighty celebration of their new spandangly - and well served - title.
The party was a 6-9pm affair, and being the keen eaters and drinkers that we are, we arrived at 6pm on the dot and they almost had to turf us out at closing time! I like to call it loyal support, although they might call us greedy buggers!
The restaurant, I must say, looks absolutely fantastic. It’s been done up with a Union Jack theme - seeing as fish and chips are such a British tradition. It was also lovely to see the restaurant has been extended so they can fit in more people – which is very much needed because this is a bloody popular place!
After interacting on social media lots, it was great to meet James and Bonny, the pair behind Simpsons and to congratulate them on their success. They believe the key to good fish and chips is using quality ingredients, and it’s clear from tasting a few things off their menu – they’ve got it so right. They also work with a number of local producers such as Cotswold Gold for their oil and Bottle Green for soft drinks.
So what did we eat? Well, obviously fish (in various forms – cakes and cod bites) and chips, which were so in demand the servers couldn’t get more than a couple of steps away from the kitchen hatch before their trays were empty! We stood strategically near the kitchen so that we got to try everything. Asides from the fish and chips, I absolutely loved their battered halloumi. I didn’t think you could get much better than grilled halloumi, but it turns out, if you batter it, and then deep-fry it – it really does get even better! I wasn’t a fan of the battered gherkin (but I don’t like gherkins anyhow), so Kingsley obliged and finished mine off as well as his. They even thought of dessert and we all got a pot of Winstones Ice Cream to bring a fabulous evening to a close.
I would highly recommend booking in for a meal at Simpsons, not least because it means you get to skip the queues in the take-away, but also you’ll get to try out the best fish and chips in the UK, in fantastic surroundings. Enjoy!