That's such a shame! Either you had an unlucky day there or we had a lucky one as I've never had nicer fish and chips, before or since.
New Quay Road, Whitby, North Yorkshire YO21 1DX
Take away, restaurant, parties, catering, fish and chips, licensed
15 reviews of The Magpie Cafe in English
I was lucky enough last year (2011) to be able to get a seat at The Magpie three days in a row.
The service was excellent, especially as they were run off their feet with three large parties already in situ.
The food was excellent and, although there are quite often long queues to get in, it is a small place after all, it is worth it in the end.
There are nice views out across the harbour as well, and the Abbey and church on the other side, are well worth a visit if you have time, and the energy to climb the 199 steps as a pedestrian; there is a route by car as well though, so don't worry.
Well over hyped ,they do good fish and chips but at a price and usually a huge queue.
I also find that the oil they fry the fish and chips in has a strange aftertaste (only noticed during 2nd visit)
There is a much better fish and chip shop in Whutby that all the locals use ,its a bit out of the way but much better value and alot nicer in my honest opinion.
Silver street fisheries is the best chippy in Whitby.
This Chippy is meant to be the Best in the Country,
all I can say is that it’s good, well presented,
but the queues are huge and to be quite honest
once we got our food it wasn’t that special,
It is good don’t get me wrong, but as others have said,
a lot of Hype.
If you really want a good Chippy,
go to Brixham in Devon, Looe in Cornwall,
or Mr Chips in Newark..
If you are in Whitby.. go to the Magpie.. it’s still worth a visit..
Went to the Magpie takeaway today and it was horrible.I ordered haddock and it was very wet and flaky(not firm as haddock usually is).The batter was not crispy and the chips were not hot.We shall never return.
Comment 1 comment on this review
pinkystan, 21 June 2011:
Best fish and chips ever? I think so! When people heard we were coming to Whitby for the day they all said 'go to the Magpie Cafe!'. Our plan was to go for a massive walk first, then head there for some well earned noms, but instead we nipped to the takeaway bit as soon as it opened because we'd heard the queues get massive - by the time we'd walked all over Whitby and came past again, there was a queue halfway down the street so we did well : )
Light, crispy batter, tasty chunky chips and fresh fluffy fish - deeelish.
Loved it. But then I enjoyed my whole holiday to Whitby. Myself and my good lady went on a 4 day break to Whitby last September and really enjoyed it. Having family that had been on holiday there helped as they advised us to try The Magpie on the waterfront. To be honest, the first couple of days we were there we walked past each evening laughing at those hungry pedestrians who were queuing up like cattle, or indeed Apple fans waiting for the next iPhone which is made of chocolate, or gold.....or garden fairies carrying good vibes.
Basically we knew we would probably try it on our last night there and we were glad we did. I`m not a huge fan of fish and chips as I find them normally fatty and too filling, with the feeling almost like you`ve just gorged on a large fish, perhaps a whale and then someone comes along ringing a bell offering ice cream. However, I enjoyed the meal thoroughly although, initially I was disappointed with the size of the meal. As we both ordered the smaller fish thinking that it was going to be a monster but of course we were wrong. It did leave us wanting more though. What I would say is don`t expect a nice relaxing evening meal where you can swoon over your partner (or yourself if so inclined) as the service is hurried and frantic at times and once you have actually gotten in to be seated (after an hours wait) you are then ordering straight away and not expected to hang about. Obviously this is because they are popular and want to seat as many people as possible but this does spoil the feel of the plaice....(sorry, someone was going to do it if I didn`t!) and makes it feel like a rush. So after waiting for this wonderful meal, the best fish and chips this side of the atlantic, you are then given 20 minutes to get it down you and be on your way. It`s a shame as the food was great and the waiting actually gives it a feeling of anticipation, almost building it up more than it deserves but overall it`s definitely worth the wait and making the effort to go. Not the cheapest, not the most relaxed but the best fish and chips and you can`t fault the speed of service!
I’m not a massive fish and chips fan but you’ve got to have them when you go to the seaside! I’d heard loads about this place (seemed like everyone I’d told I was going to Whitby recommended it) so I thought I’d go see what all the hype was about.
The restaurant does look nice from the outside, but there was a very long queue and we wanted some time to explore Whitby in the afternoon, so we decided to go for the takeaway. The queue for that wasn’t too bad - it was about half two so maybe we’d missed the rush, but we had our meals within fifteen minutes. We ate it sitting on the beach and I was so impressed - you could taste the freshness of the fish (as you should be able to in a fishing village) and it was cooked to perfection - not at all greasy, and still really hot. Although it had seemed quite expensive (I think it was about £8 for two portions) the fantastic quality and the size of the portions made it good value - we could have shared one and still been full. I’m sure the food in the restaurant’s just as good, but I’d recommend getting a takeaway and eating it on the beach to save time and get the real seaside experience!
I’m not sure if the Magpie Cafe is the most famous fish and chip place in Whitby, but by recommendation from quite a number of friends and colleagues it is the best. Going by my experience I wouldn’t argue: it seems entirely possible. The haddock was huge (my companion had cod) and the chips were much more flavourful than any other chippie I have frequented. I wonder what type of potatoes they use? The teacakes were unremarkable but good, but it was the quality of the fish and potatoes that made the experience: unsurprisingly for a fishing port, the fish tastes fresh enough to have just that moment jumped out of the water. Mouthwateringly delicious, even in memory - I’m hungry right now - and not unreasonably expensive at takeaway prices.
The Magpie is a legendary fish restaurant and always attracts large queues waiting for tables. The menu is quite varied from the normal fish and chips to a selection of fresh fish and some seafood, with veggie choices and some meat options for those who don’t like fish. We had to try this and went out of season so got in relatively easily, it’s a nice place with plenty of table spread over a couple of floors. We both had the small fish and chips and that was plenty large enough. It was all cooked fresh and brought to the table. While I really enjoyed it, I wasn’t keen on the fact that it’s cooked in lard, as I’m used to vegetable oil and found the taste took some getting used to. They also do a selection of desserts but we were so full after the main that we reluctantly had to pass! The Magpie opened a takeaway chip shop next door so you can now experience the taste without the long queues, well there can be a queue but it’s much quicker to get served than to get in!
Time and time again we return to the Magpie even though we live 100 miles away, and we have yet to be disappointed.
As we like to sit on our own we sometimes have to wait longer in the queue than necessary, but if you lke to share you will be seated faster.
Last time we went we only queued for 5 minutes and this was at 3.30 so maybe go later rather than sooner and your wait will not be as long.
Situated over four floors this is not great for anyone with a problem with stairs! The tables are close together but not intrusive.
The menu is so comprehensive that for a fish lover, well,it can take a while to make a choice.
I personally think that it is great value for money, we have always found the staff to be helpful and friendly, also very patient when I cannot make my mind up!
We like to try different things there, if you want a feast try a salad, I would not say that these are slimming though! Loads of different fishy treats, my special contained, lobster,crab,smoked salmon, poached salmon,tuna, mussels, cockles, prawns, langoustines, and other delights I have fogotten, plus a myriad of leaves,tomatoes,spring onions,coleslaw etc etc etc.
Also please try the fish pie it is to die for!
The mega fish and chips do literally hang off the plate and are more akin to a small whale than a fish. As everything is fried in lard they have that deep rich yet crisp taste ( I am now starting to drool!) Great proper chips light and fluffy but with a crisp outside.
Alcohol is served and is not overpriced, tea, coffee and minerals, bear in mind the Tea is proper tea, leaves not bags.
The staff do not rush you out even if they have a queue and you can linger and just enjoy.
When eating here I have always felt that everyone seems very happy and pleasant, (customers and staff alike) Maybe it is the good old fashioned, English with full tums syndrome.
An ecclectic mix of nationalities though, who all seem to say the same thing, Great!
The Magpie also now have a take away so you can enjoy on the move!
This is a place that always gets rave reviews and I can’t understand why! After waiting for half an hour in a queue down the small street packed with tourists, you get in there and the staff are too busy to smile. Because of its reputation, the prices are hiked up and the tables have been crammed in so it’s like a traditional tea room except your bumping knees with your neighbour. The food is nice but not out of this world and I ve tasted far superior fish elsewhere
Believe the hype! Absolute magic on a plate. The best fish and chips ever (not just coming from me, but from 5 others as well who have had way more experience!). Just for funsies we did a cod vs haddock taste test. Personally, I’m a haddock fan, but that’s neither here nor there. Making a reservation is key - especially for a larger group. They also give you a nice little victoria sandwich cupcake complete with candle if it’s your birthday. Tons of options for any diet or taste. Highly recommended if you are visiting the wonderful town of Whitby!
Fantastic, queues always seem to be out of the door but well worth it when you get in. Very child friendly, great portions (too much in fact) and very reasonable prices. The restaurant is set on at least 3 levels, could be considered four but it is a bit of a maze of a place and easy to get confused. Staff very attendant, pleasant and nothing was too much trouble.
Kids portions were just a big for the money and my lot really enjoyed them. Was a bit worried that a sit down meal in what seemed a more upmarket place than we would normally inflict the public with them would be dreadful, but no they rose to the expectations!
If I was not vegetarian thn 5 stars but there are veggie options.
There are a few great fish and chips shops here..some have won awards…obviously fresh fish comes in with the fleet.
The Magpie Cafe in Whitby is one of the most famous restaurants in England. Unlike other famous restaurants however the Magpie does noes deliver haute cuisine, instead it is famous for its fish and chips.
Do not be put off at the length of the queues outside. Even if it is pouring down with rain, and it does quite frequently in Whitby, you can still guarantee that that there will be anything up to a hundred people that will have formed a queue outside waiting for the doors to open.
Having quickly won over the locals and regular visitors to the town with its quality fish and chips, the final surge in popularity came when the famous food critic, Rick Stein announced that this place served the best fish and chips in Britain.
People began flocking here from all over the country and indeed from other parts of the World too, and this placed the Magpie, within the market of fish and chips at least, into a league of its own.
In many ways the Magpie has become a victim of its own success and other local traders are now complaining that the daily queues outside are obstructing their shop entrances and their trade is suffering. It is one of the town’s most popular tourist attraction and serves as a magnet for visitors.
It opens at 11.30. There will already a very long queue outside. It is like the TARDIS deceptively large inside.
It is painted black and white, the colours of a magpie bird, from where I assume this place derived its name. The location is right on the edge of the harbour. It is not however apparent just how wonderful this location is, until you are inside the building, since the water is not visible from the front of the building. There are also views of St Mary’s Church and the Abbey on the hillside above.
The history of this building dates back to 1750 when it was originally a merchant’s house. It became the Magpie Cafe in 1939. In between this time a prominent member of the Scoresby whaling family owned it for many years and it was also used a shipping office and a pilot’s office. There is a ghost here, called Albert that puts in regular appearances. (From Harrowing’s shipping office times).
The menu is very seaside orientated and you will find little else other than fish and seafood.Haddock, Cod and Plaice available. It is also possible to request that the fish be poached or grilled rather than fried and served with or without batter.
The magpie makes no secret in the fact that it uses lard to cook its products in and this is without doubt one of the main contributing factors to the rich taste. It is however possible to request that your food not be fried in lard and the menu does contain a small selection of dishes that would be suitable for vegetarians, but for non fish or seafood eaters this is somewhat limited. Kippers are here..
Lindisfarne Oysters….Seafood Chowder…Clams, Crevettes, Mussels, Crab,Anchovies, Salmon, Smoked Salmon,
Scallop, Mop Herring and Prawns. Every possible kind of fish from 10 inch cod to crab and lobster thermidor. For veggies there is shepards pie, pasta dishes, mushroom stroganoff and dishes of the day plus olive and chiabatta starter.
Locally sourced food is a strong theme here and the majority of the seafood that is served has been caught here in Whitby. The bread is also locally baked.
The Magpie Cafe is licensed to sell alcohol and there is quite an extensive wine list.Tea arrives in a large pot that actually contains real tea leaves as opposed to teabags.
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