A fish and chip shop in South London claims to have the most extensive English wine list of any chippy in Britain after adding a nine-strong line up to the menu.
Drawn from five counties, Kent, Hampshire, Sussex, Surrey and Dorset, the wines have been carefully chosen by owner Harry Niazi to pair with nine of his fish suppers. They include Ridgeview Fitzrovia Sparkling Rosé N/V, Chapel Down Brut N/V and Jenkyn Place Brut 2013.
Harry comments: “We re-worked our beer list last year to bring in five British gluten free beers to pair with our gluten free fish batter. I then tasted Winbirri Bacchus from Norfolk and Jenkyn Place sparkling wine from Hampshire, and thought now that our British beer list is flying, why not give a big bold hug to England’s burgeoning wine scene as well? English wines seem to have an amazing floral acidity to them, like a squeeze of exotic lemon with our fish! And they add a new element to the toasty butteriness of our batters.”
Encouraging more businesses to add English produce to the menu, Harry says: “As an industry we should be looking at great British products to serve with our fish and chips if we can. And the great thing about English wine is that only a limited amount of bottles are produced, which means small businesses like us have the opportunity to embrace something that is really quite unique.”
As well as matching white wines, Harry has taken the unusual step of pairing a red wine (Bolney Pinot Noir) with his gluten free battered hake and a white Pinot Noir, made from red grapes, with battered salmon.
The menu received the thumbs up from wine connoisseur Rupert Ponsonby, who attended the launch night of Olley’s new English wine list. He comments: “If restaurants are to survive these days it’s important to keep on refreshing your offering. Harry’s done that with his gluten free days and now he’s doing it by adding English wines to the menu. Yes, you have to give customers what they like, but also you have to give people a dream and Harry has chosen a range of wines with different exuberant effervescent flavours which work well with the whole dish - the fish, batter, tartare sauce and mushy peas.”
The full wine list includes:
• Ridgeview Fitzrovia Sparkling Rosé n/v (Sussex)
• Chapel Down Brut N/V (Kent)
• Jenkyn Place Blanc de Noirs 2010 (Hampshire)
• Bolney Pinot Noir 2016 (Sussex)
• Lyme Bay Shoreline - Bacchus, Pinot Noir, Reichensteiner, Seyval Blanc 2015 (Dorset)
• Chapel Down Bacchus 2016 (Kent)
• Litmus Bacchus/Chardonnay Element 2013 (Surrey)
• Jenkyn Place Brut 2013 (Hampshire)
• Litmus White Pinot Noir 2015 (Surrey)