Fish and Chips (Tórshavn, Faroe Islands)

After we got back from Mykines, we did some more exploring around Streymoy and ended up back in Tórshavn for dinner. From 1940 to 1948 the Faroe Islands were under British rule, since the British pre-emptively “invaded” after Denmark fell to the Germans to protect the islands from also falling into German hands. While that occupation was shorter than the American occupation (and later post-war NATO presence), the British occupation did leave a lot of little bits of evidence all around the Faroes. Old foundations of observations posts in the mountains. Artillery pieces on the hill over Tórshavn’s harbor. The airport itself was originally built by the British (with its locations chosen since it was well-protected from naval bombardment). And, on a cultural front, a love for fish and chips. One of the better places in the Faroe Islands to get “Fiskur v. Kipsi” is called “Fish and Chips” (again, the Faroese tendency towards relatively simple names for places).

Located in a simple storefront right next to Tórshavn’s town hall, Fish and Chips is basically a copy of your standard British-style “chippy”. The menu is relatively simple: combinations of fried fish or chicken with chips, as well as hot dogs (I would have ordered a hot dog, actually, since Faroese hot dogs are actually pretty cool. But they were out of hot dogs, so that’ll wait for another post). And, like a British chippy, this one also was full of Brits (apparently, while the ferry had departed, a cruise ship had arrived, and the Brits all gravitated towards the chippy). But after a short wait, we retired to the nearby picnic table with our haul: two bundles of newspaper-wrapped fish along with some bottles of Sisu.

I’ll have to say, on one hand, the fish was pretty much your standard, well-executed British-style fish and chips with no surprises. But there was actually one surprise: I’m used to my fish and chips being haddock (my usual preference), cod (my fallback), or some other random fish. Here is was… salmon. Not that surprising, actually, since salmon is pretty much the most significant export. But I’ll have to say, a good 3/4″ slab of salmon is unusual, but makes for some pretty tasty fish and chips.

So yeah, we enjoyed Fish and Chips, and it showed that even something pretty straightforward can hold some interesting surprises when you are in a foreign land.

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