November 09, 2008

Goodbye, Waistline!

Something I've lamented about North America ever since I first moved here is the impossibility of finding good, real fish and chips. By "real" fish and chips I mean: fish that is cooked in batter that stays slightly slimy on the inside (sounds delicious, I know), and chips that are hand-cut and softer than they are crunchy. Anyone who has ever eaten fish and chips in Britain will know exactly what I mean, and they'll also agree, I'm sure, that North American attempts are usually a big disappointment: the chips are just big french fries, and the fish may as well have come from the freezer section of the supermarket.

I've actually always found it surprising, especially given that I've tended to live in places in North America with significant populations of Anglo immigrants (however many generations removed), that the market for real fish and chips has not been able to sustain at least one or two good chip shops when the alternative is so poor. But there you go: I've never come across the real thing on this continent.


Two weeks ago, The Battery opened in Brighton Centre, just a hop, skip, and a jump from Boston's public transportation. It purports to be an "authentic Irish chipper" and, I can very happily say after going there for lunch today, it lives up to the title. They have fish suppers (with real fish and real chips!), battered sausages, a variety of British beverages (Lucozade, Ribena, Lilt, etc.), and even, if the tattle on Yelp is to be believed, deep-fried Mars bars — though I didn't see the latter on the menu. They even have curry sauce for your chips, a culinary invention so ludicrous that only true Brits and Irish folk can appreciate or even really understand it.

Now, of course, "real" fish and chips is kind of a ideological construct rather than an accurate reflection of reality, because there's a lot of regional variation even within Great Britain: Edinburgh fish and chips are different from Glasgow fish and chips are different from London fish and chips — and Irish fish and chips are a different creature altogether. But while my lunch at the Battery was not exactly what I retain fond memories of from home, it is without a doubt the closest thing I've had to Edinburgh fish and chips in the years that I've been searching for them on this side of the Atlantic. And it was freakin' delicious.

So I encourage all my readers, in the interest of developing the market enough to sustain this fantastic new addition to Boston dining, to make their way to Brighton Centre and dig in. Just don't forget your heart medication.


In other news, CWG is now the first hit when you Google "Conversations With Greatness"! This is quite a coup after years of languishing in second place behind some half-baked motivational radio show, which has now, it seems, gone under. So my condolences to them, but hurrah for me!

This blog, on the other hand, continues to attract such august search terms as "sodomy in concert" and "artificial vagina" — but I think that's par for the course.

1 comment:

Patrick said...

hooray for search terms! I was incredibly delighted to learn just last week that someone found my blog by searching "reoccuring dreams about dinosaurs."

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