This week focuses on Mr Cod, 130 Victoria Road, Swindon. Tel: 01793 435666

UNTIL this visit, I don’t think I’d ever been in Mr Cod entirely sober.

It’s the kind of place that looks and smells so enticing on the walk home from Old Town’s pubs and clubs, and where the food tastes heavenly after a glass of wine or three.

So I was sad to note than it doesn’t look quite so appealing in broad daylight, when the strongest drink you’ve had all day is your morning cup of builders’ tea.

The place could do with a lick of paint, frankly. And a bit of a tidy-up wouldn’t go amiss either; boxes were stacked behind the counter in a way that made the shop look cluttered and dusty. If I hadn’t been reviewing it for Takeaway of the Week, I might have been tempted to hop in my car and drive to a different chip shop for my lunch.

Fussiness aside, however, the food itself wasn’t too bad.

In a shop of this name, I thought it best to go for the fish and chips (although they do seem to specialise in fried chicken, oddly).

My piece of cod (£3.80) was large, with a crispy batter, and the chips (from £1.65 to £2.60 depending on portion size) were sizzling hot and chunky. Haddock, plaice and masala fish are also on the menu.

My one grumble was that the fish was very oily and oozed grease when pressed with the fork, which was slightly offputting, but I still manged to eat the majority.

My partner chose a fishcake (85p) and chips... and then added a sausage in batter (£1.50) and curry sauce (85p) for good measure. He too finished most of it, but said afterwards he’d had better chip shop takeaways elsewhere.

The best bit was that our meals came in a Styrofoam container, meaning we didn’t need plates and therefore escaped the washing up.

Chicken seems to be the dish of choice at Mr Cod, with various meal deals and bargain buckets featuring pieces of coated chicken or chicken wings, ranging from £1.50 to £16.99.

There are also eight different types of burger, from £1.99 for a chicken steak burger to £3.60 for a mega fillet.

I’ll almost certainly eat here again, as Mr Cod is right on my doorstep, but it will be on my way back home from the pub when I do.

As far as I’m concerned, this place is best viewed through beer goggles.