This “chippy” review is coming from someone who doesn’t actually like our national dish all that much. I found this little gem following my mothers request to try some “proper northern fish and chips” when she last visited me in Manchester. For someone who usually avoids the greasy delights of battered fish, I didn’t hate it… dare I admit that I would actually god back for more!
If I was going to have fish and chips at all, then I was going to have the best that Manchester had to offer. I couldn’t let my lovely mother down now could I. So I went on an internet hunt and stumbled across Fish Bait, a humble eatery nestled amongst the brightly lit restaurant scene along Burton Road in West Didsbury. You can eat in or take away, and there is more than you’re standard fish and chips on the menu. You can nibble on crispy whitebait or battered soft shell crab, get your nashers round their Posh Fish Barm or wrap, go lights with a smoked mackerel salad or grilled haddock with luscious lemon aioli, stick with tradition and a choice between battered cod, haddock, plaice of scampi, opt for meat free and a Grecian influence of battered halloumi with tzatziki or even go gourmet and try their lightly battered oysters or butterflies king prawns. Everything is made to order using fresh ingredients and you’ll also find seasonal specials so you can try something new.
But lets get down to business; did Fish Bait really serve the best fish and chips in the north? It’s two thumbs up from mum and a clean plate from me. The fish was not glistening with grease, but was coated in a crisp, light and golden batter that protected the gloriously silky fish within that flaked with ease under the slightest touch of my fork. Likewise, the chips had a crisp coat and fluffy potato within—great dipped in their sweet spiced curry sauce. Yum, yum, yum. A squeeze of lemon and dollop of house-made tangy tartar sauce were the perfect accompaniments to the fish, not forgetting the vibrant mushy peas that were coarsely mashed for a lovely texture rather than pureed to an unrecognisable mush. Washed down with a nice cold beer, or sparkling water for me, it makes for a tasty evening bite.
178 Burton Road
T: 0161 448 0128
Open 16:00-21:30 (Mon-Wed), 11:30-13:45 & 16:00-21:30 (Thurs), 11:30-13:45 & 16:00-22:00 (Fri), 15:30-21:30 (Sat) & 15:30-21:00 (Sun)
fish & chips with mushy peas & tartar sauce £7.25