Matt and Cat\'s Isle of Wight Eating Out Guide
Fish and chips, unlike revenge, is not a dish best served cold. In fact, cold chips, unlike cold pizza, is a meal fit only...

Fish and chips, unlike revenge, is not a dish best served cold. In fact, cold chips, unlike cold pizza, is a meal fit only for seagulls. For this reason, Matt rarely gets to sample fish and chip takeaways unless they are quite close to his home town of Ryde, and he can take the food home to eat before it congeals.

Ocean View fish and chip shop, Ventnor

So die-hard Matt and Cat aficionados will be interested to note that this time he’s ventured beyond the Island’s north-east quarter, as far as southerly Ventnor. And if you think that’s surprising enough, you haven’t heard the half of it. This time, his trusty fish-and-chip-eating companions Bill and Jack were not accompanying him, nor was he alone. Yes, friends, it’s finally happened, Cat has been into a fish and chip shop.

M & C were staying in Ventnor and, in need of a quick meal, decided to make for the nearest takeaway. When this turned out to be the popular and highly-recommended Ocean View, perched high above the town on the edge of Lowtherville, Cat – normally reluctant to consider chip shops as a source of food – showed no sign of wavering in her determination to get a hot dinner, and so into the bright little shop the duo went.

Ocean View fish and chip shop, Ventnor

It’s not hard to see how Ocean View Fish and Chip Shop gets its name. The broad sweep of the English Channel is laid out far below, and the few vessels on the horizon serve only to emphasise just what a great view of the sea can be had from Ventnor. Ocean View’s customers can gaze at the eponymous scene as they wait for their orders, but M & C were not swayed from their purpose. Ocean View is a typical chippy, serving standard chip-shop fare. Like most of Ventnor, it’s got a good few steps to get up to the front door, but unlike most of Ventnor it does have convenient parking on the road behind it. Matt and Cat hardly looked at the menu, having already decided what they were after. Haddock and chips for Matt, and chicken pie and chips with curry sauce for Cat. Service was brusque, but efficient: it wasn’t long before the diners were back outside clutching their precious supper. Soon it was home and dispensed to the waiting plates.

Ocean View serves up its meals not in paper parcels, in the traditional style, but in little cardboard boxes. This is certainly a convenient means of transport for the food, but lacks something in the unboxing. You just can’t beat the smell of a hot paper bundle of fish and chips. Still, in this case the boxes were only a very temporary resting-place for their meals, and Matt and Cat were soon paying overdue attention to their contents.

Cat’s pie was a traditional Pukka Pie, still in its wrapper and piping hot. When she dug her fork into it it exploded in what she described as a ‘cloud of pie dandruff’. Underneath the enjoyably crispy fluff was the chicken and mushroom; a good sticky filling with identifiable components. The pie was tasty and moist. Cat enjoyed the nostalgic waft of generic curry sauce as she poured it liberally over her chips. It was like being a student again but without the state sponsorship.

Matt and Cat’s bill
Chicken and mushroom pie: £2.20
Medium haddock: £3.50
Large chips: £2.20
Medium chips: £1.50
Curry sauce: £0.80
Lemon and tartare: free
Total: £10.20

Matt was delighted to find on opening the box that he had been treated to a complimentary helping of lemon and tartare sauce. Three thick sections of fresh lemon sat properly on top of the haddock fillet, and nearby two sachets of tartare were on offer. He was impressed: this is usually the sort of thing a chip shop will charge extra for. Top marks to Ocean View for generosity. The haddock itself was a modest portion with an average coating of batter, but inside it was fresh and tasty. Both Matt and Cat enjoyed the chips that accompanied their meals – they were plentiful, and clearly made from fresh spuds.

So both Matt and Cat found themselves with just a few chips left on their plates – very much satisfied by their foray into Ventnor’s fish-and-chip offerings. Ocean View is recommended.

  • Lizzy says:

    We go in OVFC most weeks and get free lemon and tartae sauce (you have to ask Doh!) . The food is cooked to order comes in boxes and NOT at all greasy. The place is great now (under the new owners).

  • John F says:

    Very nice fish and chips!

    Much better than some of the rubbish served on the mainland.

    Love the boxes too!

  • Keith says:

    This place has seen the highs and lows. go back 20 years and the food on offer was dire. Several years ago a lovely couple who used to run the chippy in Bembridge (iirc) took over the Ocean View and transformed the place – food was now cooked to order, came in boxes, was of excellent quality, and generous portion sizes too. The range of products was extended too. Easilly the best chippy for miles around. Being that your review lists the free lemon and tartare I will guess that this was the era that your review was based upon as this is no longer the case.

    This couple have now departed (to a cafe in Newport I believe) and standards are not what they were. Portion sizes have reduced noticeably, the quality of cooking has dropped too – as other recent reviews have stated there seems to be a lot of dark greasy residue about and the food is generally overcooked. Disappointing. Several people have told me that the Ventnor Fish Bar is now the better option.

    If you’re ever down Bognor Regis way, chack out Fish Kingdom in Aldwick Road – Monster portions cooked properly!

  • Ady Piper says:

    I live in ventnor and OVFC is without doubt the best chippy takeaway , Besty and spinky for allday breakies and the deli for a quick coffee.

    The VFB is Ok in emergency and as the folly Inn? At a tenner for frozen and chips do me a favour LOL

  • PAUL MULLERY says:

    I have discussed the standard of fish and chip shops on the Island many times with friends and we all have reached the same conclusion. The standard is not high at best and downright pathetic at worst. For an Island location, one would think that fish and chips would be second-to-none. Those proprietors who consider their product to be of high quality would do well to visit some outlets on the mainland for a comparison.

    Proper battered fish has a fairly even, light,crispy batter covering.

    The main concern is the fish with respect to portion size and batter. What some proprietors call large fish would discover their portion is only 1/2 the size of mainland outlets.
    If a customer orders a large fish and none is available, then 2 tail portions are offered on the basis that for the same length, a tail end by definition, cannot contain the same meat weight as a front piece. This policy is not seen on the Island.

    I have seen and tasted some strange batter mixes. Proper battered fish has a fairly even, light,crispy batter covering. Some batter I have encountered is rock hard with sticks of solid matter jutting out at all angles like twiglets. I wonder if this is done to increase the apparent length to mask the absence of fish?

    I and others have now given up on them and only eat fish and chips as a formal meal in a pub. If you would like a foot long, solid fish meal, then go to the Folly Inn. Amazing value.

  • debbie says:

    Just had uncooked fish, returned to shop given short shrift and a refund for the fish. One of the staff claimed to have never had any complaints before!!!! Expected a genuine apology and maybe a discount on the other meal we bought at the same time for the inconvenience and disappointment. Their reply was that I had been refunded for the fish and I had eaten some!!! There would be nothing other than the refund for the uncooked fish. I only live a few doors away and use them regualarly although the quality of the meals varies. Have had to return uncooked fish before and also fish that was so off it smelt the house out as soon has my husband walked in with it!! The reaction when we returned that was the same as tonight. Have stuck with them as I like to support local businesses and I know they have had a lot of changes in the last few years. However now I will not buy from them again because of their attitude to their customers.

  • minny says:

    Used to go to Ocean View years ago and it was always very good.
    Have recently moved back to the Island so thought i,d give it a try, what a mistake, waited 35 minutes for the most disgusting Cod and Chips i,ve ever had.
    The Cod, (not even sure it was Cod) was so burnt it was unbelieveable and swimming in very dark coloured grease, the chips looked very over cooked but were actually raw inside.
    I telephoned Ocean View and was told, “well we haven,t received any complaints from anybody else and we are very busy so perhaps you would like to discuss it the next time you are in”
    As if i would ever have gone and ordered from there again!
    I now use the Fish and Chip shop in the High St and i find the Cod, Chips and Mushy Peas very good and also excellent value and before anybody asks, no i am not anything to do with the place in the High Street.

  • WOW says:

    Wow amazed at some of the comments… Heres mine.
    We retired to the Island about 18 months ago and during that time have eaten at most chippys (on a pension you know!) Were in winford and we were told about ocean view by neighbours not long after arriving… Since then we go about twice a week and really love the place..The food is cooked Only to order, I love Haddock and IMO it is the best on the Island and my wife loves the cod (and codbites when available) so to avoid any long wait we telephone order and we give them a time and they give us a number ( we try a avoid Friday as its gets really really busy in the summer)Why an earth people are complaining about waiting for fresh cooked food?? Richard and His staff are great and accomodating. We like a light batter and free lemon with my Haddock. I have been there when the potato man has delivered a mountain of sacks of yes Island potatos making there lovely bendy chips under the shop. We have had one bad chips which were replaced FOC next visit in nearly 2 yrs. I think they employ locals and train the youngsters up which is great to see. I have tried the one in Ventnor town and its not for us. I have tried the Haven in Ventnor harbour and given pollack by mistake and frozen chips again not for us….. Keep up the good work

  • ghostmoth says:

    Bought fish and chips here for the first time since last year but it wasn’t as good so I don’t know if the shop has changed hands. The fish was still lovely but I couldn’t see the sign declaring the use of local potatoes and the chips were soggy and undercooked. It seems to have fallen foul of the Isle of Wight fish and chip shop problem – either the fish or chips are good but rarely both.

  • Brian Smith says:

    Just the best fish and chips on the Island. The location is just a bonus while you wait for fresh hot food. Can’t wait for my next visit.

  • josieowl says:

    we have curtailed our use of ocean view as the portions seam to have got smaller and the chips not cooked properly. also opening times changed to only 4 hours an eve. we went a few weeks ago and it was 8.35. we asked for chips only to be told ‘sorry no chips left, what we have is for pre orders only as due to close and wont be cooking anymore’??!!
    we now dont bother much with them. we used to use them quite a bit but hey at least it helps with the new years resalution not too eat many take aways>

  • michelle says:

    Well must say it was the worst Fish & Chips I have every had!!! Chips full of grease, hard & small portions, fish burnt!!! Never again

  • Michael Times says:

    I visit ventnor about 6 times a year as my folks live there.

    Discovered this site as Ocean View has the sticker on the door!

    We always eat fish n chips from ocean view and have never had a problem, infact i have tried the chippy down the road in the town centre and its more like a kebab shop than a proper chip shop; with greasy food, frozen chips and nothing cooked fresh its all frozen, you only have to look at the number of customers who go to ocean view to appreciate that the Quality simply speaks for itself.

    I cant beleive how much the new owners have changed ocean view, its fab! very clean and tidy now, much nicer than other establishments i must add.

    Ventnor boy!, i think its pretty obvious your the competition down the road isnt it?

    I will always eat my fish n chips at ocean view as they always have my order ready when i phone up, (no waiting 30 minutes)

    Best fish n chips i have ever eaten, even better than chippy’s up north, lovely fresh fish, clean, crispy batter and tasty chips cooked to perfection.

    I cant really comment on other’s experiences but for me and my parents, Ocean View has always been the best chippy in ventnor, keep it up guys and gals!

  • Lou says:

    I agree with ventnorboy…even if just ordering chips and fishcake, you can see it’s all there in the heated bit ready to go but they insist on taking more orders and you can end up waiting ages when all they need to do is just put it in a box! Also seems to be a bit of a habit lately that the chips are JUST cooked. They could do with a bit longer and I’ve had a couple of portions that are still pale and creamy looking where they are barely cooked through. As you can guess, we don’t go there anymore! Too unreliable as to what the quality will be like!

  • ventnor boy says:

    sorry to say this but im a local to the chippy since it was taken over ive been there 4 times manly just for chips and curry sauce….. but every time i go i seem to wait for over 30mins and all i order is 2 chips and a curry sauce…. never offerd salt or vinger. witch im a fan off as never taste the same when i add it my self… very disapointed and not likley to use any more. will travel the exra 5mins to the town center

  • yeaaaah says:

    by far the best chippy on the island always served the best food! Good enuf service, should open an eat in place 2 YUM

  • razzledazzle34 says:

    Just one word – awful

  • nigel tribe says:

    whilst on the iow recently we had fish&chips from ocean view on 2 occasions.The cod we had was lovely &chunky fish skinless,with lovely batter,the chips were delicious new potatoes,both myself&family would say this is the best fish& chips we have had,and i have been in many all around Britain.It speaks for itself as on both occasions we went their we had to wait half an hour for our food,however it was well worth the wait.

  • Have to agree with the other reviewers, this Fish and Chip shop is by far the best on the island. We had fish and chips last night from there and it was lovely – island potatoes used and no “bits” in the chips. It met our high standard of “nice thick cod and bendy chips”!!

  • ghostmoth says:

    The fish is fresh and cooked to order, the batter is light and not greasy, the chips are amazing and made from local IW potatoes and serving them in boxes means nothing goes soggy and the food stays hot for longer. Ocean View serve the best fish and chips on the Island!

  • Hungry Fool says:

    Went there 2 nights in a row earlier in the week. Great service and quality of food. There were always 1 or 2 other customers there when I went.

    The cod for me was amazing, really fresh. On the first visit the chips were a little bit old (in terms of freshness) but were good enough for me, not at all greasy. Second visit offered fresher chips!

    Important to note that they only open for 4 hours a day, Mon-Sat only!

  • John Sharp says:

    I am never dissapointed with the product from your outlet. The place is reasuringly clean and the staff professional.

    This page should have a phone number and address on it as your only presence for fish and chips in ventnor is google maps which puts you in Godshill.

  • Ocean View says:

    Thanks for your Kind comments, as for the Island visitors ” we know who you are!” We have never ever run out of fish or chips. We do occassionally run out of different popular sizes as we offer FIVE sizes but theres Always most available. Are deliveries are made very early most days and the food is local and prepared fresh every day unlike our competitors(island visitor!) we don`t sell frozen chips Only fresh hand cut chips from locally sourced suppliers……
    Once again thanks to everyone for there kind words and Matt & Cat for the great work promoting hard work and keeping up standards

  • Daz says:

    Being a regular visitor to ventnor and also a die-hard fish and chip fan, I have eaten at Ocean View Fish and Chips for a number of Years Now.

    The first thing i noticed on my most recent visit (Febuary 2010) was how clean and fresh the new owners have made the place, it really is quite a change from the previous owners, with new signs, lighting, paintwork, It all looks very nice and much brighter than last year, so top marks on your presentation Ocean View.

    I also noticed that they have been awarded a 5 star food Hygeine award, something im told is quite difficult to get hold of and clearly this not only shows visually, but as they say the proof is definatly in the pudding!

    I have always received excellent service from the staff and as always the food was exquisite, especially the fish which i have to say was cooked to perfection and had a great taste to it.

    I do agree with matts comments above too, the boxes are much better than paper as the chips are always much fresher, they also make carrying them easier and are great if you want to sit outside and eat!

    Overall im very impressed with the new Owners efforts with regard to the building and its appearance as well as there apparent very high level of quality and cleanliness.But most of all im glad they have not changed the food too much and it remains better than any other chippy in the surrounding area, if not the IOW.


  • Richy says:

    Great little chippy must be one of best on the Wight. They do run out of stuff occasionally, but thats a Good thing? They must be selling loads and its always fresh and great! Best views on the Island by far and its great to sit out in the summer and enjoy them in the fresh air as it should be!

  • island visitor says:

    I was quite surprised to visit a ‘fish’ and chip shop, order my portions of fish and chips only to be told that there wasn’t any fish of the menu as the delivery hadn’t yet made it! On deciding to leave and to go else where I was greeted by the delivery of oodles of the frozen delight. Thankfully I was able to get paper wrapped (you get a bigger, better portion this way)and very tasty fish and chips down the road and able to feed my hungry brood promptly! A very disappointing first and only visit.

  • James says:

    Recent change of ownership, but still very good quality, and MUCH better than most fish and chips shops…. and if there were awards for best view from a chippy it’d surely win?!

  • FinchyVentnor says:

    Ocean View does the best fish and chips this side of the IOW. I’ve always enjoyed their food. The fish is always good, firm and flakes off in nice chunks (unlike some other godawful frozen slushy grey mini-fillets you get from other nearby establishments) and the chips always taste like proper chips. Great place.

  • Matt in Ventnor says:

    The paper might be traditional, but the box allows some air to circulate and stops the steaming hot chips turning the batter soggy! Science in action!

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