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5 Must-Try Fish 'n' Chips in the DC Area

By Rina Rapuano
June 12, 2014
Photo by: Rina Rapuano

For many, fish 'n' chips is the ultimate comfort food. Fried and starchy, stick to your ribs — it's the perfect pick-me-up when you're feeling blue (or hungover). Best of all? In this era of hyper-local food sourcing, it never goes out of season. Here are a handful of places where you can relive that backpacking trip to the U.K. or the fish-fry Fridays of your youth: 

Where: The Codmother  
Dips: Ketchup and tartar sauce
Sides: Mushy peas ($3), coleslaw ($3), chips ($4)
Cost: $8
Good to Know: This irreverent U Street spot is open till 1:30 AM weekdays and 3 AM on weekends. It’s a dive bar that serves fish 'n' chips, so don’t expect the posh, chefy situation over at Eamonn’s — but do expect great deals on beer and whiskey shots. Oh, and they do have fried Snickers and Oreos.
1334 U St. NW; 202-265-0709

Where: District Fishwife  
Dips: Housemade tartar or Aussie ketchup
Sides: Chips
Cost: $12.65
Good to Know: For her fish 'n' chips, owner Fiona Lewis beer-batters two large fillets of blue catfish, an invasive species from the Chesapeake. Her Union Market stall also sells raw seafood out of a glass case.
1309 Fifth St. NE; 202-543-2592

Where: Eamonn’s A Dublin Chipper  
Dips: Marie Rose (housemade mayo, ketchup, Tabasco, lemon juice); Chesapeake (mayo, Old Bay); Fronch (mayo, mustard); hot chili (mayo, roasted red peppers); hot Madras curry; Kitty O’Shea (mayo, olives, capers, sun-dried tomatoes); tartar (mayo, cornichons, red onions, lemon juice)
Sides: Coleslaw ($2.50); baked beans ($3); mushy peas ($3)
Cost: Cod comes in small ($6) or regular ($9); chips come separately in small ($3) and large ($4.50)
Good to Know: For Anglophiles and British expats, this Old Town spot also sells British favorites like Jaffa Cakes, Cadbury candy bars and Lilt soda.
728 King St., Alexandria; 703-299-8384

Where: Fishnet 
Dips: None that come with it, but each of the four sandwich sauces — Turkish tartar, cucumber tarragon, spicy aïoli and horseradish rémoulade — can be purchased for 75 cents.
Sides: None
Cost: $11
Good to Know: Owner Ferhat Yalcin uses cold soda water instead of beer to batter his local wild blue catfish from Virginia. He makes it to order, so it takes about 10 minutes.
1819 Seventh St. NW, 202-350-4350; 5010 Berwyn Rd., College Park, 301-220-1070

Where: Ri Ra  
Dips: Tartar sauce
Sides: Mushy peas ($2), mac 'n' cheese ($6-$8), onion rings ($4-$6)
Cost: $14
Good to Know: If you’re feeling guilty about ordering all the fried food, go with a friend and split it — along with a large, creative salad.
3123-3125 M St. NW; 202-751-2111

Places Mentioned

Eamonn's A Dublin Chipper

Irish • Alexandria

Food23 Decor16 Service18 Cost$18
 
 
 
Fishnet

Seafood • College Park

Food24 Decor16 Service20 Cost$17
 
 
 
Fishnet

Seafood • Shaw

Food24 Decor16 Service20 CostI
 
 
 
 
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