For once or maybe twice in a month, I would treat myself to a fine meal of fish and chips. Over the past few years, with some consideration for good health by not making this a regular weekly, my treasured trips to the chip shop had unintentionally sent me on a quest in finding the prefect fish and chips available.
Around town, there are a staggering amount of fish and chip restaurants and takeaways to choose from and having tried over thirty places offering great and some not so great fish and chips available, I refined my selection criteria by asking myself what I was looking for in my perfect fish and chips. To put it simply, I discovered that I wholly driven by nostalgia and in particular, finding that distinctive taste of old school fish and chips that I never forgot from childhood. From spending sunny days at the seaside with my parents as a boy to cold nights outside in a break from the pub as a student, the unforgettable taste of great fish and chips stands unchallenged with any other comfort food possible.
Getting a mediocre standard of fish and chips has become quite common nowadays in always trying out new places for fish and chips. To redeem myself from the disappointing visits, I find myself systematically returning to the place where I last had really good quality fish and chips and for over the past few years, Argus Fish Bar has undoubtedly been my most frequently visited chip shop.
Located on a residential heavy section of West Street in Bedminster, Argus Fish Bar has long been rated as one of the top fish and chips shops in Bristol with numerous positive reviews found online. On any given day, you would always find a few regular customers waiting for their order and chatting with Jim the owner and as a first time visitor; you would also be greeted like a regular by their polite and friendly staff.
The wall menu offers all the traditional fish and chips favourites and each deep fried item is cooked just as you order it. The fish is consistently fresh and if you like to test their skills in frying, I highly recommend you start eating your fish and chips the moment you step outside the shop; just to experience their crispy batter proportionately balanced over the flavoursome and succulent fish. The chips are really the crown jewels of the place as they stand apart from most chips available anywhere. Whether the secret to its amazing taste is in the oil and choice of potatoes, there is no fancy packaging or modern decor, just that tasty old school style of fish and chips that has become so hard to find nowadays. If you are looking for the same thing, you will probably rate the goods here as highly as like many Bristolians who visited here before. In my search for fish and chips heaven so far, this is still the closest to what I remembered as the good fish and chips I had in my childhood.
It is difficult to fault a place like this where it is evident that they have spent much effort in delivering such a fine showcase of fish and chips. Occasionally there are slight quality inconsistencies on busier weekend nights when the hordes of regulars arrive to get their fix. For this reason, I would rarely visit on a Saturday night to avoid the possibility of that disappointment. Feasting on fish and chips outside the shop might not be everyone’s idea of eating out but all good batter depreciates by the minute whilst it is under wraps; which makes me think that it is such a shame why there has been no restaurant seating here after all these years! My quest for the perfect fish and chips still continues but until I find that (probably never?), Argus Fish Bar remains as the next best thing.
Argus Fish Bar
114 West St, Bristol, Avon BS3 3LR
Tel. 0117 966 4850