Fish and Chips at Van Looy’s

It happened a few days back I was on an errand in Southend High Street and it was approaching midday; I was returning to my car and I was hungry. As I was passing, I made the spur of the moment decision to call in at Van Looy’s fish and chips restaurant, just opposite the main entrance to Southend Central railway station.

Funnily enough, both this and Grumpy’s diner where I had breakfast only a few days prior were set up by my local councilor, Paul Van Looy, now retired from both businesses. I decided right away what I wanted – the OAP special (cod, rock or plaice – I opted for a change the latter) as pictured above, and a drink, plus the chance to sit down. I went for a bigger table so I could stretch out  but was politely asked to move to a smaller one. The restaurant was already beginning to fill up and I understand it can get fairly busy. I was served not long after that and enjoyed the nicely done fish, chips and peas that was served up, which nicely satisfied by appetite.

I paid £6 in total, and given how nice it was this represented very good value. If I had a gripe, while the service was prompt and efficient, I did feel a lack of being fussed over that I often get elsewhere – not that it should matter, especially if part of group, but I docked a mark, meaning I scored it 8.5 out of 10 rather than 9.5. Even so, I was pleased I made this on the spur decision and will no doubt return again, especially if with company, expecting good honest grub at a low cost, even if not the bedside manner.

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