Matt and Cat\'s Isle of Wight Eating Out Guide
Ozze’s Plaice, Pan Ozze’s Plaice, Pan
Ozze’s Plaice, Pan

Although we are spoiled for chip shop choice in Ryde, with Chipmunks, The Cod Father, the new Esplanade Fish Bar and the ever-reliable Wight’s, sometimes it’s worth venturing further afield for your fried fish Friday. And, should the desire to become a takeaway tourist strike you, we heartily recommend that you take a trip to Pan, to Ozze’s Plaice.

Before we go into the details of the meal, we must strike a note of caution. Unless you are in training for some kind of world record eat-a-thon, you would be best to recruit a friend to share your fish and chip supper. Perhaps even two – or possibly even more.

Are the portions really that big? When we made enquiries at the counter, speculating if maybe a ‘large’ would be appropriate for the two of us, the server said, after an appraising glance, “Small will be absolutely fine for you two.”

We added to that one medium cod and one large haddock, and you can’t have a chippy supper without peas. Mushy ones are not to everyone’s liking but, then chasing regular spherical peas around your plate, before watching them roll off your fork isn’t to everyone’s liking either. So we included a ramekin of roll-resistant mushies, curry sauce and two cans of orange Fanta to the order.

Even though our fish was cooked specifically for us, we did not have to wait long for our meal to be ready. Responding to our number being called out, we handed over our bag-for-life, and it was returned to us laden with hot parcels.

Thanking Ozze in our tourist Turkish with a “Teşekkürler!” we headed out into the autumn night; car gently steaming up with the heat from the dinner.

Back at home, we unfurled the parcels. Even compared to the size of the large haddock, the small portion of chips was absolutely ginormous. So much so, with only a fraction of the chips served up, our biggest plates could not contain all the food. The fish extended well beyond the crockeries’ circumferences, sprawled like a lanky teenager with their legs thrown over the arm of a chair.

Before tucking in to our meals, we blended the mushy peas with a little water to make them more spreadable for the chip butty, though with that astonishing amount of chips more carbs were probably not really what this dinner needed.

Heston Blumenthal-style triple-cooked chips have been created especially to give what is described as a glassy exterior. Is a glass crust desirable? This is a matter of preference, but for us a soft bronzed chip is where it’s at for a classic chippy chip. Happily, Ozze’s were yielding and attractively browned, which also gave them a desirable hint of sweetness. The texture and quality of their innards was nice and fluffy too; not dry or oily. A proper chip.

Matt and Cat’s bill
Cod £6.50
Haddock £8
Small chips £2.30
Mushy peas £1.20
Curry sauce £1.20
Total £19.20

The fishes’ golden batter was traditional and crispy, with a decent texture and flavour. Inside the fillets’ insulating golden jackets, we discovered a well-cooked meaty interior of white flesh which flaked agreeably, imparting succulence with every mouthful.

Alongside the impressive portions, great value for money and deliciousness of the fish suppers, a special commendation must also go to the curry sauce. Maybe not everyone’s preferred chip lubricant – debates about vinegar, ketchup, mayonnaise abound – but for us it’s a firm favourite. Ozze’s had the prerequisite currants; tempering the mild spiciness with a sweeter note. Aside from that it’s hard to put a finger on what was different from the standard yellow paste of other chippies, but this was probably the best-tasting chip shop curry sauce we’ve had.

Maybe it’s because it’s the season for hunkering down with hearty and hot fish supper, perhaps it was the really pleasant, helpful and speedy service – especially considering that our fish was cooked freshly for us – but we enjoyed the process of buying our fish and chips as well as eating the results. Absolutely delicious and very good value.

This is the full-length version of the review first published in the Isle of Wight County Press

01983 241400

  • Vast portions
  • Classic chippy chips

4 of 5

4 of 5

4 of 5

3 of 5

4 of 5

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