HOME > Chowhound > San Francisco Bay Area >
What's your latest food quest? Share your adventure
TELL US

Craving fish and chips.

a
Adamsimpson Mar 5, 2009 10:38 AM

I live in San Mateo, but willing to travel when I get the craving, and I spend lots of time in the city. I have yet to be impressed outside of England. Yes, Ive searched around, no I didnt find much.

  1. wolfe Mar 5, 2009 11:38 AM

    Could you give a hint what and where you didn't like besides H. Salt.

    1. Pei Mar 5, 2009 11:40 AM

      I like Picadilly's, Old Chelsea, and O'Reilly's, but wolfe is right that some idea of what you've hated and thought passable would be helpful.

      1. h
        hankstramm Mar 5, 2009 11:47 AM

        In San Francisco, the Pig and Whistle makes a respectable F&C. Their cornish pasties are decent too as are the Bangers& mash.

        1. d
          DavidT Mar 5, 2009 12:22 PM

          The Irish Bank in downtown SF does a good job with their F&C.

          10 Mark Lane (off Bush St., between Grant & Kearny)

          1. k
            kresge86 Mar 5, 2009 12:52 PM

            My absolute favorite (at least of late) has been the New Zealander in Alameda. Great beer batter type coating with wonderfully, light, fresh fish.

            -----
            New Zealander
            1400 Webster St, Alameda, CA 94501

            1. a
              annabana Mar 5, 2009 12:54 PM

              I really like the f&c at Fish in Sausalito and on a nice day, you can't beat the right on the water view. Thin, crunchy batter, really fresh fish, superior fries and great homemade tarter sauce. It may seem a little pricey but tax is included and the tip jar at the order counter is optional (they bring your food to the table, but everything else is pretty much self-service, tho I always leave a buck or two in the jar cause everyone is so nice.) Bring cash, they don't take cards.

              1 Reply
              1. re: annabana
                steve h. Mar 6, 2009 04:31 PM

                yeah, the fish and chips at fish is pretty good. bonus points for eating outside and watching folk try to pull up to the fuel dock.

              2. Cynsa Mar 6, 2009 09:04 AM

                Pacific Catch has fish and chips; I especially like the Tokyo Salmon fish and chips!
                Rock cod is often the catch of the day for fish and chips here.
                Fish & Chips
                Lightly battered & fried in 100% canola oil with sweet potato fries, sesame slaw & house-made sauces.

                Pacific Catch of the Day
                jalapeño tartar and Thai sweet-chili sauce
                3 pieces - $10.95
                4 pieces - $12.95
                5 pieces - $14.95

                Mixed Catch Basket - $13.95
                2 pieces of fish, 4 coconut shrimp & 3 crispy oysters with jalapeño tartar

                Tokyo Salmon - $12.95
                4 pieces of salmon with ginger-wasabi aioli & lemon ponzu

                Thai Coconut Shrimp - $11.95
                dipped in coconut milk batter, coconut flakes & five spice with Thai sweet-chili sauce

                Crispy Oyster Basket - $13.95
                Pacific Coast oysters with jalapeño tartar

                My go to spot is Edinburgh Castle and Old Chelsea's fish & chips; although I would like to try San Francisco Fish Company at the Ferry Building for their F&C.

                -----
                Pacific Catch
                1200 9th Avenue, San Francisco, CA 94122

                Pacific Catch
                2027 Chestnut St, San Francisco, CA 94123

                2 Replies
                1. re: Cynsa
                  w
                  walker Mar 6, 2009 01:44 PM

                  One thing I noticed driving by the one on Lincoln/9th Ave -- there's a free parking lot for Pacific Catch right next to it on Lincoln, a big advantage in that popular area.

                  1. re: walker
                    wolfe Mar 6, 2009 02:25 PM

                    There is one and it is a little "big advantage". The last space is a bear to get out of when there is someone waiting to get into it.

                2. Chuckles the Clone Mar 6, 2009 09:59 AM

                  Even in England it can be hard to avoid f'n'c dumped from the big white plastic bag of
                  frozen Sysco-equivalent into old oil. Three local places I'm pretty sure aren't doing that
                  are:

                  1. Barclays. Oakland. Great fish, fabulous beer menu, terrible environment.
                  2. Sea Salt. Berkeley. Precious, expensive, very tasty.
                  3. Fish. Sausalito. Very expensive. My judgement has possibly been impaired by only
                  eating there when -extremely- hungry, but I like it a lot.

                  1. m
                    ML8000 Mar 6, 2009 03:31 PM

                    Kensington Circus in Kensington serves some pretty decent F&C. Owned by Brits if that helps. I think you have to ask for crunchy.

                    When I lived in the 'hood I use to go Buffalo Burger Restaurant for F&C a lot. I went a couple of times with some ex-pat Brits and kids of Brits and they thought it rocked. Since I moved away they remodeled and I stopped by once...it wasn't as good however that could have been an off day.

                    People always mention Woodhouse...haven't been, seems a bit too fancy to dine and just get that, well not living in the area.

                    Also heard there's an H Salt in Richmond but never been. As a kid H. Salt in SoCal was very good and started by Brits. Any reports on H Salt?

                    -----
                    Woodhouse Fish Company
                    2073 Market St, San Francisco, CA 94114

                    Kensington Circus
                    389 Colusa Ave, Kensington, CA 94707

                    Buffalo Burger Restaurant
                    5317 Geary Blvd, San Francisco, CA 94121

                    H Salt Fish & Chips
                    12951 San Pablo Ave, Richmond, CA 94805

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: ML8000
                      BernalKC Mar 6, 2009 03:53 PM

                      I like the Woodhouse F&C, and I order it most of the times I've gone there. But I don't think someone craving F&C they remember from England would find satisfaction there.

                      I think the rendition at Tower Burger is actually closer, but still not something I'd really recommend in this case. The fish is good with a good batter, but the chips are basic fries and not proper chips.

                      Not that I'm such an expert on English Fish and Chips. Both Woodhouse and Tower are tasty and I've order each many times.

                      -----
                      Tower Burger
                      729 Portola Dr, San Francisco, CA 94127

                    2. n
                      Nancy Berry Mar 6, 2009 04:27 PM

                      I like the fish and chips at Boulevard Cafe in Daly City.

                      -----
                      Boulevard Cafe
                      2 Poncetta Dr, Daly City, CA 94015

                      1. anyhow Mar 6, 2009 04:29 PM

                        Have you tried Cook's Seafood in Menlo Park? It has been popular with our British friends and is my favorite on the Peninsula.

                        -----
                        Cook's Seafood Restaurant & Market
                        751 El Camino Real, Menlo Park, CA 94025

                        4 Replies
                        1. re: anyhow
                          bbulkow Mar 7, 2009 09:10 AM

                          If you live in San Mateo, Cook's is certainly worth a try. It's British style, and much closer than Berkeley. Not expensive either - formica tables and such.

                          Another good spot is Peninsula Creamery in PA. They're a little upscale, so I think they clean their oil frequently and supply decent fish. Seem to have the knack for it.

                          Yes, I've had a few good F&C in england. One very old-school place north of bradford, had no obvious name.

                          The easiest path to Cook's takes you past Jonathan's on Willow. However, they do Southern style not British style.

                          1. re: anyhow
                            y
                            yerioy Apr 7, 2009 04:38 PM

                            We have tried F&C all around the Bay Area and still prefer Cook's as well. We also favor their Clam Chowder.

                            1. re: anyhow
                              Melanie Wong Apr 13, 2009 12:00 AM

                              Would you believe that dinner on Friday was my first time at Cook's? We took our mom there for a quick meal and were in and out in less than 30 minutes even though the place was packed. Is it always like that or busier during Lent?

                              Wish the white clam chowder wasn't thickened, but it was tasty and had lots of chopped clams. Wm's usual order is the sandab f&c, $7.99, and I was pretty impressed with it. Perfectly cooked, and though the batter looks a bit heavy, it's not. Wm said it's the most reliable order. We also had Alaskan cod, $7.99 with 2 pieces. These were thick hunks. But sadly, overdone and too firm, also the batter tasted a bit burnt as well as being tough.

                              Great deal on the sandabs.

                              Sandabs f&c
                              http://www.flickr.com/photos/melaniew...

                              1. re: Melanie Wong
                                anyhow Apr 14, 2009 08:36 AM

                                Gee, Melanie, I'm sorry you had bad luck here. Cook's has been reliable and I've recommended it -- in part for that reason.

                            2. p
                              peterme Mar 7, 2009 08:14 AM

                              Weird Fish on Mission has *excellent* fish and chips. Perhaps the best I've had in SF. They're not traditional, but they're damn tasty.

                              -----
                              Weird Fish
                              2193 Mission St, San Francisco, CA 94110

                              3 Replies
                              1. re: peterme
                                Civil Bear Mar 13, 2009 10:17 AM

                                Put me down as a respectful "no" vote for Weird Fish. Anyway, I doesn't sound like fried tilapia and sweet potato fries are what the OP is craving.

                                1. re: Civil Bear
                                  Chuckles the Clone Mar 13, 2009 02:44 PM

                                  I -really- liked the fish part of the fish and chips. But the chips part, six months ago or so, was regular, not sweet, potatoes, and unfortunately they were fried with the skin on. Which I do not like at all.

                                  1. re: Chuckles the Clone
                                    Civil Bear Mar 14, 2009 12:51 PM

                                    I'm just not a fan of tilapia in general and especially not as part of fish & chips. The pieces are always too thin and too mushy.

                                    As an aside, I tried Pacific Catch last night after reading this thread, and low & behold the fish & chips were fried tilapia and sweet potato fries!

                              2. SFguy Mar 7, 2009 01:36 PM

                                Johnny Foleys Irish pub off Union Square does a great job of F&C using fresh cod and a lager beer batter. Its accompanied with some tasty green (english?) peas as well.

                                -----
                                Johnny Foley's Irish House
                                243 Ofarrell St, San Francisco, CA 94102

                                1 Reply
                                1. re: SFguy
                                  m
                                  monkeytime Apr 10, 2009 02:22 PM

                                  I second Johnny Foley's. Was just there yesterday to cure my F&C craving. Batter is crispy and not soggy. The mushy peas make you feel better that you're eating fried food. Wash it all down with one of their many beers on tap.

                                2. s
                                  saffrongold Mar 13, 2009 12:39 PM

                                  Taylor's Refresher in Ferry Plaza has great fish & chips.

                                  2 Replies
                                  1. re: saffrongold
                                    c
                                    ceekskat Mar 13, 2009 01:37 PM

                                    I was there last November w/ parents & dad ordered the f&c. Greasy, just 3 or 4 pieces a little bigger than chicken nuggets & lots of fries seemed like a rip off at $14.00 (better items/value on the menu). I do enjoy their ahi burger (bun was soggy on a previous visit & perfect this time). Much prefer their version to The Counter.

                                    1. re: ceekskat
                                      s
                                      saffrongold Mar 13, 2009 03:43 PM

                                      wow that's too bad that Taylors has gone downhill. I admit it has been a year since I had f & c there. Thanks for the update.

                                  2. m
                                    madoka Mar 13, 2009 06:23 PM

                                    I highly recommend the Duke of Edinburgh in Cupertino. The fish and chips are great there (I would even say better than Cook's in Menlo Park) - available in duke's (4 pieces) and duchess' (3 pieces) portions. The pub atmosphere is very nice too (all the decor was imported from Britain by the original owners).

                                    -----
                                    Duke of Edinburgh
                                    10801 N Wolfe Rd, Cupertino, CA 95014

                                    1. little big al Mar 14, 2009 01:23 PM

                                      "Results may vary" but sometimes I have had terrific fish and chips at Red's Java House. I think that and the corned beef hash are really all that's worth the calories there, and recently the fish has been over battered, but even when it's just okay, you can't beat Red's for being the real thing. $7.00 bucks a pop and $5.00 bloody marys. See you there.

                                      1. l
                                        luckytomato Apr 7, 2009 03:53 PM

                                        If you're ever in Half Moon Bay, my Scottish friend is a big fan of Barbara's Fish Trap. We tend to get the fish & chips and their scallops and chips.

                                        5 Replies
                                        1. re: luckytomato
                                          BernalKC Apr 7, 2009 04:30 PM

                                          Adding to the link collection:

                                          -----
                                          Barbara's Fish Trap
                                          281 Capistrano Rd, Half Moon Bay, CA 94019

                                          1. re: BernalKC
                                            b
                                            Brisbane Apr 7, 2009 08:58 PM

                                            Yes, I like Barbara's Fish Trap as well.

                                            1. re: Brisbane
                                              r
                                              rln Apr 25, 2009 06:49 PM

                                              Mmmm, thank you for this. Went to try Barbara's Fish Trap today.
                                              Liked the fish and chips a lot.
                                              Liked the Rings and Dings -- calamari appetizer. not chewy at all and the batter had a spice... i know strange, but a little like cinammon.

                                              1. re: rln
                                                Robert Lauriston Apr 26, 2009 11:35 AM

                                                I think they put a little mace in their batter.

                                          2. re: luckytomato
                                            Steve Green Apr 8, 2009 06:49 PM

                                            For the Half Moon Bay area, we always go to Ketch Joanne in Princeton harbor-- greaseless F&C and FAR superior to Barbara's. We think Barbara's F&C is quite greasy. Ketch Joanne also has salmon & chips as well as halibut & chips -- our favorite.

                                            -----
                                            Ketch Joanne
                                            Princeton CA, Princeton, CA

                                          3. m
                                            mrs bacon Apr 9, 2009 08:12 AM

                                            Just got back from England, and I would second the Pig and Whistle in SF for the most authentic F&C I've had in the Bay Area. While some of the other suggestions are nice (Fish, Cooks) they don't really remind me of the English version.

                                            2 Replies
                                            1. re: mrs bacon
                                              wolfe Apr 9, 2009 08:38 AM

                                              Link

                                              -----
                                              Pig and Whistle
                                              2801 Geary Blvd, San Francisco, CA 94118

                                              1. re: mrs bacon
                                                Civil Bear Apr 10, 2009 02:04 PM

                                                Thank you for the rec mrs. bacon. I tried the fish & chips at Pig & Whistle for lunch today and got exactly what I was hoping for. Two large piping-hot fillets of cod (might as well have been a whole fish), with a (relatively) thin & crispy batter, and a large serving well-done fries. Served with a decent tarter sauce, and and malt-vinegar already at the table. $9. Very nice.

                                                Oh, and they have some nice lagers on tap too...

                                              2. Robert Lauriston Apr 13, 2009 08:56 AM

                                                Sea Salt's are my favorite. Barbara's Fish Trap is very good. I like ordering Old Chelsea's at Edinburgh Castle but they're not particularly good.

                                                Kensington Circus gets the texture right but the fish is absurdly undersalted.

                                                -----
                                                Sea Salt
                                                2512 San Pablo Avenue, Berkeley, CA 94702

                                                Barbara's Fish Trap
                                                281 Capistrano Rd, Half Moon Bay, CA 94019

                                                1. scarmoza Apr 13, 2009 10:41 AM

                                                  Jay n' Bee's is now serving pub grub. Though it saddens me that Marta's Kitchen is no longer there, I will say that the fish and chips now served are pretty good.

                                                  1. c
                                                    chesterg Apr 13, 2009 11:47 AM

                                                    Anybody like Anchor & Hope, Woodhouse or Nettie's? Of those, I think Nettie's is my favorite - tasty batter, light. Great to sit outside, too, on a nice day. Also Town Hall's is quite good, though probably the most expensive on the list. Woodhouse is cheaper but greasier. I thought Weird Fish was way too greasy, but it might have been a bad day.

                                                    -----
                                                    Woodhouse Fish Company
                                                    2073 Market St, San Francisco, CA 94114

                                                    Anchor & Hope
                                                    83 Minna Street, San Francisco, CA 94105

                                                    Nettie's Crab Shack
                                                    2032 Union Street, San Francisco, CA 94123

                                                    1. j
                                                      Jack Apr 26, 2009 11:48 AM

                                                      Camelot Fish and Chips, 70 West Manor Drive in Pacifica, is good and inexpensive. The only downside is that they close early, at 8:00 p.m.

                                                      Show Hidden Posts