Sutton & Sons, London
I absolutely love a good old fish and chips. Sutton & Sons is one of the best I have ever had and let me tell you why.
They have three branches: Stoke Newington, Islington and Hackney. I visited their Islington branch, which has a casual and laid-back vibe to the restaurant.
To start, I tried their 1/2 Dozen Irish Rock Oysters (£8.95) upon recommendation by the wonderful hostess, Arianna. They were salty and sweet with a light and tangy after taste. They were extremely fresh (and I wouldn't expect anything less as Sutton and Sons are also fishmongers). These oysters were the right thickness - not too paper thin and not too thick. They were perfectly chilled and the vinaigrette topped it off spectacularly.
Just look at how fresh that looks!
To drink, I had their Hackney Pale Ale (£4.50). I'm never one to pass up a good craft pale ale! It went well with all the seafood.
Naturally, I had to have their Traditional Cod Fish and Chips (£10.50). For sides I had the Red Onion Rings (£2.50), Mushy Peas (£1.95) and an array of homemade sauces. Weird enough, I will talk about their sides first. Their red onion rings were the best onion rings that I have ever had. I kid you not. I'm a massive fan of onion rings and when you use red onions instead of white onions, you get extremely sweet onion rings. It was so crunchy and there was none of that "more-batter-than-onion" situation going on.
The mushy peas were not my favourite as I normally prefer some mint in them to cut through the neutral taste of peas. But I did enjoy the type of peas they used, which made a very starchy and thick dish.
The cod is the traditional fish to be used for this dish and it was superbly fresh. As you can see from the picture above, the flesh was layered and separated from other layers nicely.
The batter was light, thin, not too oily and had a nice crisp. This fish and chips really was exquisite.
The chips are homemade in Sutton & Sons -- none of that processed stuff here! It was nicely fried and the potatoes had a good starchy bite to it.
To prove it, their weekly potato delivery arrived with at least 25 bags of potatoes weighing 25kg each!
Mrs. Sutton's Homemade Sticky Toffee Pudding (£4.50) was absolutely divine. (Mrs. Sutton is real by the way -- the wife of the proprietor! Boy, do I love family run businesses!) I perhaps could have done with a little more toffee but the pudding had strong enough hints of cinnamon and was moist.
All in all, I definitely would come back here alone and have all the dishes again (perhaps sans the peas). Nom nom nom.
Sutton & Sons
356 Essex Road,
London N1 3PD
Tel: 020 7359 1210
Monday to Thursday 12 to 10pm
Friday to Saturday 12 to 10:30pm
Sunday 12:30 to 10pm