Thursday 25 July 2019

Dublin's Vegan Chipper: Vish Shop, Dublin 7


I remember my scepticism at reading Catherine Cleary's glowing review of Veginity when it used to be on Richmond Place South a few years ago. Being a bit too French and raised on a rather meaty diet I used to think that vegan food couldn't possibly be tasty. With the rise of decent vegan offerings in Dublin, I have definitely changed my mind over the last year or two.

Vish Shop is a vegan chipper located on Blessington Street, ran by Mark Fenn from Veginity. It offers vegan adaptations of all the popular takeaway classics you're likely to crave when hungover but leaving your ethics intact. Vish Shop doesn't smell like a chipper that's been using the same old frying for ages and nor does it look grubby, so it's actually nice to eat on-site if stools happen to be available by the large windows.


I've tried a few of their dishes over the last couple of months and I'm happy to report that I'm officially a big fan. The signature dish is the vish (€6), a vegan version of battered fish which is made from cassava (a root vegetable originally from South America) and wild Irish seaweed. It looks surprisingly like a regular fish and chips when you order it, served along with their excellent triple cooked chips (€3.50). While it will never get the flaky texture or the taste of fish, the cassava is soft in contrast to the crispy batter and the seaweed brings a hint of the flavour of the sea. The vish is served with a dill pickle aioli sauce and topped with pickled samphire, it's definitely worth a try for something a little different.

What you must absolutely eat in Vish Shop is their cauliflower wings (€6). Give me those over chicken wings any day. These chunky florets are coated in a rich BBQ sauce and cooked to perfection, the 'meatiness' of the cauliflower works wonders and tearing the 'wings' apart almost has the bluffing effect of pulling apart a chicken wing. The sauce is packed full of flavour and the wings are served with a big blob of pickled aioli, pineapple salsa and sriracha sauce.

The carrot dog (€6, not pictured) was also a good surprise, a smoked carrot is soft, battered and encased in a bun with beetroot kimchi, lettuce and tomato. The same pickled aioli and sriracha sauce is used in the dog too so it may be a little repetitive if you order a few items that come with that same sauce. The Korean kimchi and smokey tofu chips feel dirty (good dirty), fully loaded with pungent kimchi but the tofu had a bit of a rubbery texture which didn't quite work for me.

The only chipper I used to frequent was SMS (Super Miss Sue) which sadly closed a few years ago but with Vish Shop I found an interesting substitute which keeps me going back for more. Their chips and cauliflower wings are well worth the trip to Blessington Street but if you happen to be on the southside, they also have a stall at Eatyard. If Vish Shop manages to satisfy meat-eaters like me and Mr FFID with their vegan fare you know they're definitely doing something right.

Vish Shop
1 Blessington St
Dublin, D07 XD37
Vish Shop's Facebook page

Disclaimer: this is an independent review, I paid for my food and drinks on every single visit.