Let’s be real, it wouldn’t have been a proper trip to London if I didn’t have at least ONE meal dedicated to English food fare — fish & chips!
As one can imagine, there is a sea of fish & chip places to pick from in London and it took me some digging to find one joint that I thought was worth a go.
I sifted out a couple of fish & chips places according to four main categories:
- The fish, of course!
- The chips (the potato-ier, the better, not frozen or packaged fries)
- Homemade tartare sauce (ESSENTIAL, no packet shizz, puh-lease!)
- Location (centrally located, not on the far ends of London due to time restrictions)
In the end, Golden Union seemed to fit the bill. They toot about offering the “freshest fish from sustainable British waters” delivered daily, cooked with their special homemade batter in oil that has been changed up to no less than 8 times a week, fresh cut fries from potatoes in the Fenlands of East Anglia (in plain terms, Eastern England 😋) AND homemade tartare sauce. Golden Union sounded like a sure winner to me!
Located on a small street in Soho, my friend and I headed over to Golden Union after running a couple of errands (i.e posting myself packets and packets of Marks & Spencer Prawn Cocktail shell chips and other English food snacks! Sure beats paying for an extra bag on Ryanair 😜).
We arrived at about 2pm and had just beat the busy lunch crowd. As you walk past the takeout counter, you’re visually welcomed by the assortment of fried fish, jumbo sausages, and homemade pies. Those homemade pies sure looked tempting, but I had my eyes on the prize!
Lucky for us, we were seated right away without having to wait. My friend and I were surprised by how busy the place was despite our arrival being after peak lunch hours. The hungry just kept on coming…
Golden Union rocks a cool, retro diner vibe that is unpretentious thanks to the variant of clientele and warm service. Cool without the hipstery ‘tude aka good in my books. You can even find a digital jukebox that’s free for everyone to enjoy, double points!
You have the option of choosing a small or large portion of each fish which I foolishly mistook for the size of the tartar sauce serving. And of course, I wanted a LARGE serving of their homemade tartar sauce. Instead, I was presented with a large plate of cod and hand cut fries which was no problem at all… I mean, girl was hungry!
The fish batter was light without being overly crunchy, it didn’t taste too greasy in any way and the cod was simply delicious. Fresh and satisfying!
The fries were so-so to me as I found that the outer skin was a tad dry, I love a good fry that’s potato-ey and soft (gotta soak em’ potatoes in water to get that perfect texture before frying. Okay, okay, I digress!). I definitely added a good couple of shakes of vinegar to the “chips” and it made for a tasty booster. My friend and I found that the mushy peas were quite tasteless and so it was sadly abandoned.
The tartare sauce was AMAZEBALLS! Dill, oh wonderful dill. I finished my first small serving of tartare sauce mid-way and asked the server for another serving, which he kindly offered at no charge. That’s the way to a girl’s heart!
For about 15 pounds per person, we both left the table with our bellies a little rounder and content!
Verdict: I can’t say that this is the best fish & chips joint in London as I haven’t tried them all, BUT I can vouch for how tasty their fish and homemade tartare sauce is. Next time, imma cop one of their pies and a milkshake!
Location: 38 Poland Street, London W1F 7LY, United Kingdom
Hours: Monday – Sunday : 11:30 am – 10 pm