Dining

Eat Cheap... GB Fish and Chips

The best fish and chips this side of London.

February 2010

While studying abroad in Scotland, I picked up an appreciation of good whisky (no "e"), cozy pubs, hot tea, and the local chippy. A chippy, for the uninitiated, is a fish and chips joint—a small, neighborhood spot that specializes in fried food for lunch, dinner, post-bar, and post-hangover. In the United Kingdom, they outnumber McDonald's by about seven to one.

Stateside, it's easy to find good whisky and pubs and tea. But locating a good basket of fish and chips—let alone a proper chippy—is nearly impossible. Denverites should consider themselves lucky to have GB Fish and Chips on South Broadway.

Alex Stokeld, a Denver kid with an English dad, opened GB's in 2007, filling the small restaurant with a few big picnic tables, a couple of stools, and British soccer jerseys and flags. TVs are always cued to soccer games—Manchester United was playing Aston Villa the last time I was there—and the big, deep fryers in back are always bubbling. The place is full from 11 a.m. on, and with good reason: GB makes real, British-style fish and chips, and most items cost less than a ten-spot.

You can order the (slightly) more exotic fried fare, like the squid or the tilapia, and it'll be good, but the smart money is on the classic cod. The batter is perfectly golden, and the fish tastes the way it should: mild, salty, and crispy. The chips are authentic: fat, thick-cut potatoes that transcend mundane french fries. Salt and malt vinegar are all you need—tartar sauce need not apply.

There's nothing fancy about GB's (which recently opened a second location across from Sloan's Lake): You'll share a picnic table with friendly strangers, your hands will get greasy, and you'll watch soccer. But beers are affordable—$3.75 for European classics like Kronenbourg 1664 and Boddingtons—and the food is spot-on. If it weren't for the American accents, you might think you'd escaped to the U.K. 1311 S. Broadway, 720-570-5103, and 2175 Sheridan Blvd., 303-232-2128; www.gbfishandchips.com