27 | Nov | 13

Richard Johnson

The Codfather Of Sole

I once had breakfast with Pocahontas. I was at Walt Disney World in Florida, but – even allowing for the hallucinogens of jetlag – it was a truly surreal experience. There was I, a fully grown man, talking to a cartoon character. Words failed me. All I could think of to say was ‘Nice ponytail’. The daughter of the Powhatan chief made um heap big excuse and left.

I tell you this because, later that same day, I found myself in the Rose & Crown Pub in “England” – well, the Walt Disney version of England. It felt authentic until I met the staff. They had been pixie-dusted by the corporation until they remembered that “everybody understands a smile”, and insisted that we all have a nice day. When would you get that treatment in a British pub?

But British pubs are changing – slowly – and so is the food. Instrumental in that change is Tom Kerridge (above left), head chef at the Michelin-starred pub the Hand and Flowers. Tom is a passionate defender of British food, and British ingredients. So we were delighted to see him travel to Southwold to meet street food legend Nick Attfield (above right) in his new BBC series Tom Kerridge’s Proper Pub Food.

Nick — and his beloved Fish Hut — always wins something at the British Street Food Awards. I’ll tell you why. There’s fish shop fish.  Frozen. And then over-fried so that it dries out. Then there’s the wonderful fresh white flakes of Fish Hut fish. It’s all served from a Southwold beach hut, and comes with it’s own seagulls and sand pit. Plus a Kiss Me Quick hat. I trust Tom felt the journey was worth it….