I spotted the Scallop Shell as I approached the New Inn but it looked too nice for the likes of me. The New Inn landlord assured me it was spectacular and without airs and for the most part he was right. The little spice cup buckets and the speciality sauce jars on the tables caught my attention, but the place is very nice without making a damp, sweaty tramp uncomfortable so long as he has the wherewithal to afford a meal.
That price is quite reasonable, too, with nothing outside the price you might expect from a chippy but the variety and quality far surpassing most of these and, indeed, many proper seafood restaurants (although, to be fair, this IS a proper seafood restaurant but just reasonable).
I had another of the Midford ciders I first sampled at the Hope and Anchor earlier in the day and started with a plate of delicious calamari (delicious but chewy…tsk: with squid even the slightest overcooking turns the tube into a tyre tube).
The fish and chips were especially satisfying and I even tasted the homemade tartar sauce. Tasted, but I swore off the stuff years ago due to an incident; this batch made me momentarily rethink the embargo, though.
I could have done without the little cutesy treasure chest presentation of the bill, but I am a sour old bastard.
Maybe ten minutes stroll from the rail station, this is my new favourite restaurant in the city.