Chinese visitors flock to chippy near York to taste a traditional ‘English’

Scotts Fish and Chips manager Roxana Vasai (right) and Chinese tour group leader, Linda Lin in front of her tour group
23 Aug 2018 @ 9.22 pm
| Business, Food & drink

Our most traditional dish is trending in China.

Scotts Fish and Chips – located on the A46 at Bilbrough, near York – now serves 100 Chinese visitors a week after the country developed a taste for this unique English dish.

It began when Chinese premier Xi Jinping was shown enjoying fish and chips with former Prime Minister David Cameron in 2015.

And now tourists flock to Scotts after it launched on Weibo and WeChat, China’s answer to Twitter and WhatsApp.

“This week alone we served more than 100 Chinese tourists in three separate groups,” said restaurant owner Tony Webster.

“And once here in addition to tucking into fish and chips, they insist on taking photos both inside and outside the restaurant with the staff.”

15-fold increase

A popular spot – Scotts on the A64
To make it easier for its foreign guests, the award-winning restaurant has translated its menu into Mandarin and Cantonese, which can be downloaded on smartphones and tablets via a QR code.

Scotts is also benefitting from Visit York’s dedicated Chinese tourism strategy, which last year printed a Mandarin version of its York Visitor Guide.

And Will Zhuang and his wife Jean, who manage Chinese social media for Visit York, have also chipped in. Tony said:

  • Thanks to David Cameron and Xi Jinping, fish and chips are a must have meal for Chinese tourists visiting the UK.

    Over the last two years we have seen a huge increase in the number of bookings being made Chinese tour guides. And to tap into this growing market we are actively promoting Scotts to travel companies based throughout China.

    Our own marketing is paying dividends and this year we have seen a 15-fold increase in the number of Chinese coach parties paying Scotts Fish and Chips a visit.

Additionally, for those tourists suffering from coeliac disease and a wheat intolerance or, through to religious practices do not eat batter made from traditional dripping, Scotts serves a gluten free version.

It is also one of a small number of fish and chip shops that has won recognition from Coeliac UK, the national charity for people with coeliac disease and dermatitis herpitiformus.