The three brothers behind Mario’s in Loanhead and Fryer’s Delight in Gracemount, two of the Lothians most popular fish and chip shops, have revealed how they are preparing their businesses for the future by ensuring that their take outs meet the high standards that today’s customers expect.
“Mario’s was opened in 1974 by our father, aptly named Mario,” said Michael Crolla. “In the past forty four years, it, and our sister shop, Fryer’s Delight, have become a leading name in quality fish and chips. Whilst this product is still the mainstay of the business, over the past few years many other types of food from kitchens of the world has been introduced to the menus, to present customers with an exciting eating experience. This has included freshly prepared pasta, pizza, and a range of marinated chicken skewers.
“We also have our American Menu offering 100% Beefburgers, Nachos, and Poutines, which are skin-on skinny fries with a selection of different toppings and sauces available, extremely popular in the Canadian market,” said younger brother, Giancarlo Crolla.
All three brothers are actively involved in the business, bringing different specialities to the table.
The brothers are looking to bring in new fish options such as a Fish Submarine Sandwich and homemade premium Fish Cakes. Sea salt is now available, instead of standard salt. Additionally, a new Panko breadcrumb option, which gives a really crispy coating on a fish fillet, is another choice to opt for.
“As a 21st century ‘chip shop’, we have to go beyond the realms of the conventional and reflect many kitchens of the world, as well as be aware of changing tastes and fashions in food,” said Giancarlo Crolla. “We have our own signature batter which is very much one of our USPs.”
“Customer expectations are far greater now and we like to think that we not only meet them, but make a point of being innovative in bringing new recipes to our menus. Poutines are a case in point as this is a staple fast food in many regions of Canada and some parts of the USA,” said Marco Crolla.
Across the businesses, M Crolla & Sons is using Bruce Davidson from Ocean Gold Fillets, based in Peterhead, as its new fish supplier. The fish is caught one day and in its shops the next.
“It’s a fresher, higher quality product which means we can pass savings direct onto our customers,” said Marco Crolla. “We have always been happy to invest in new technology for our industry, but the quality of the ingredients we use is paramount too.”
Commented Bruce Davidson: “We are proud to be M Crolla & Sons fish suppliers of choice and have come up with a very bespoke service for them which suits their needs, as this is our unique business model. We are not a huge scale supplier and work with selected businesses.”
“Together we can improve and maintain the high standards their customers expect, supplying the freshest, highest quality fish on a regular basis.”
The business is planning to enter the Fish and Chip Shop of the Year Awards for 2018/19.
“The award organisers are looking for a complete approach in excellence which we believe we can now more than demonstrate. It’s a very exciting time for us all,” finished Michael Crolla.
M Crolla & Sons run Mario’s in Loanhead and Fryer’s Delight in Gracemount