Poringland – The Fish Inn

The Fish Inn in Poringland, one of our destinations for the day. As can be seen, there was no shortage of customers waiting to get in.

The chip shop is attached to the Royal Oak pub (which for reasons unknown has recently decided to rebrand as the Poringland Oak, but will no doubt confuse many people). This is extension is relatively new (1980s perhaps) and there are some interesting old photos of the pub at http://www.poringlandarchive.co.uk/poringland/the-royal-oak.

I was pleased that the chip shop was open when we went, as there was no information on-line and we thought we’d just take a chance. The opening times are quite limited, but this is a temporary arrangement given current events. The lack of card payment always slightly annoys me (although I was prepared for that here as they’ve picked up some negative reviews already for this decision), but is harder to justify given the current health situation. I haven’t seen anyone paying by cheque for some time, I was moderately surprised to see that.

Lack of contactless payments aside, the operation seemed very safe inside with only one customer allowed in at a time and large protective screens. The service was efficient and friendly, it all seemed well managed.

The battered sausage and chips was £2.50, which is pretty reasonable. The chips were excellent and had a sufficient depth of flavour without being greasy, with the battered sausage being generic but still entirely acceptable. Sauces are extra, but salt and vinegar is available and is added by the staff member.

The reviews for this chip shop aren’t that positive at all, but that seems a little unfair. The limited opening hours probably make this easier to run at the moment as they don’t need to have food sitting around drying up, but I had no complaints about the service or food. I probably won’t go back (although since I’d have to walk over 5 miles to get there and then 5 miles back, I was never going to be their biggest customer) as cash only places are becoming ever more rare, but perhaps they’ll change that in due course. At the moment they just have to have numerous signs up saying they don’t accept cards, no doubt because it’s such a common request.