The Fake Vinegar In British Fish and Chip Shops

The Fake Vinegar In British Fish and Chip Shops


This is non-brewed condiment. It’s water, ethanoic acid, plus a few colourings
and flavourings. And in almost the all the chip shops
up and down Britain, this is the “vinegar” you’ll get on the counter. And in the modern world, it has some advantages. It can be made from a concentrate, which is fine provided the owner of the chip shop actually remembers to dilute it. That went wrong a couple of times. It’s also halal, because there isn’t
the tiny amount of alcohol in it that brewing regular vinegar causes. And some brands of it are actually gluten-free, which regular malt vinegar
most definitely isn’t. I’ve seen this sold at a premium
as “gluten-free vinegar”. But none of those are the reason that it’s
caught on. There are claims that it started in
the temperance movement, the people who were against alcohol in the
late 19th and early 20th centuries, but I can’t find a reliable source for that — ha, “sauce” — I can’t find a reliable authority for that. The reason is,
chucking some chemicals together is significantly cheaper than
actually brewing vinegar. This stuff has been around for a long time, there’s a reference to it in a 100-year-old
report from Her Majesty’s Inspector of Foods. Now legally, it can’t be described as vinegar. Trading Standards, the local government agencies
that enforce food laws, are really clear on that. It cannot be put in the traditional little
bottles that people associate with vinegar. Except: every chip shop, up and down the country,
doesn’t care. And Trading Standards… they could go into every chip shop in the
country and get an easy prosecution — but they don’t. They’ve got better things to do, like tracking down food that will actually
injure or harm you, and it’s not like they’d see any of the money
from fines anyway, that’s not how it works. And most people don’t know this isn’t vinegar. And those of us who do know…
actually don’t care. It’s not like margarine and butter, where the chemical make-up and health effects
are actually different, it’s just a slightly different taste and a
slightly different make up. But no one cares. No one minds.
Up and down the country, everyone agrees: it’s fine.
This is vinegar. So here’s my question: does it matter? [Translating these subtitles? Add your name here!]

100 thoughts on “The Fake Vinegar In British Fish and Chip Shops

  1. Good grief, don't you learn English these days in England! It's not "except every fish and chip shop doesn't care", it's "except NO fish and chip shop cares". Good grief!

  2. Even better, "except NOT a single fish and chip shop cares" – but NOT "except every fish and chip shop doesn't care"! Good grief, that is such poor English!

  3. Didn't Brittain have a law that said you couldn't sell pints of beer? You could sell the metric equivalent, but you couldn't call it a pint. At least that's what I heard.

  4. Ethanoic Acid, (a.k.a. Acetic Acid, a.k.a. Vinegar). If it comes from organic carbohydrate sources, then they are still brewing vinegar. Just not a craft vinegar. If it comes from petroleum, that is another matter. A craft vinegar may have a more complex mix of flavors and aromas due to a broader range of possible ingredients.

  5. We went to the UK a few years ago, and as people who came from SEA, we noticed immediately that this weird concoction isn’t vinegar and v confused as to wtf is happening hahahahaha

  6. I care, I use only Real Malt Vinegar. Went to Madeley College, Stoke on Trent, and ate off the wagon every Thursday night. We called the guy "greasy vic" but his fish and chips were grand and with real malt vinegar.

  7. Did anyone ever find an english/british Restaurant, that is not in england/Great Britain? I have travelled all over europe, i have yet to find one. But than again, they are not really known for the cuisine..they are like Sparta in ancient greece by comparison. Vinegar on Fries, sounds like something a spartan would do.

  8. Ok you were in my recommended feed multiple times ,and i'm gonna subscribe now. I just love knowing/learning random facts no one really needs .

  9. Anyone who puts vinegar on chips/fries actually hate the food they eat. Anyone who does that and actually like it, well, their taste buds don't function right. It's just outright horrible.

  10. I associate the weird vinegar-ish taste with British fish and chips and brought a bottle home and sometimes I'll flavor my fries with it and it reminds me of my trips to the UK.

  11. It’s not used due to it being cheaper it is the taste consumers expect in many regions in the UK. The cost of vinegar or NBC doesn’t even register with chip shop owners compared to other supplies! Andrew President – National Federation of Fish Friers

  12. It's acid and water. I need glutton free vinegar. I can go into a chip shop and ask for Gluten free chips and then they'll offer me malt vinegar!! Arses. I ask for plain spirit vinegar (non-brewed) and they look at me as if I've got 2 heads. Really? You work in a food shop and don't understand about food allergies?

  13. The useless cnts at the s*n decided in September 2019 to write an article based on this video. A timely reminder to kids – never look directly at the s*n

  14. The people smart enough to know this are smart enough not buy fast junk ( sorry won't call it food because its not)
    i make my own chips from my own grown spuds like a pro human

  15. It really does matter. The vinegar (from apple cidder or wine) has real health benefiths, especially if it comes unfiltered and unpasteurised. I strongly recommend "Bragg", not the cheaper ones also full of chemicals.

  16. What I wonder is why people put something wet on something that's supposed to be crispy. Or are the chips supposed to be mushy? Then shouldn't they be called fish and mush?

  17. In many other countries, acetic acid vinegar is perfectly legal. It's just what makes vinegar vinegar without other flavors (which I admit make a difference, apple or balsamic vinegar is tasty). But it ferments and softens meat or salads all the same, give the needed tang, and cleans spots as well too. You can buy it as a 70% concentrate and it's called food vinegar essence. Its benefit is that it's extremely cheap (like 20 cents a bottle).

  18. Of course not! Everything else Brits eat is gross why not ruin fries too.

    Btw best condiment for fries: Whataburger ketchup.

  19. One advantage to non-brewed condiment being a by-product is that it’s Gluten Free, which makes it a big deal for some that suffer.

  20. One advantage to non-brewed condiment being a by-product is that it’s Gluten Free, which makes it a big deal for some that suffer.

  21. I care and now i don't eat fish snd chips. Plus a substance called drywite is used with soking potatoes before being deepfriend no one knows that either.

  22. Luckily we don't have that stuff in Canada. Somebody has taken you Limey's for a ride. If you go on Amazon you can buy real malt vinegar cheaper than your imitation stuff even when buying by the litre.

  23. I accidentally brewed real malt vinegar when I forgot to bottle a batch of beer following fermentation, I had forgot about the full brew bin and when I came back to it I had 5 gallons of perfect malt vinegar. It tasted perfect and smelled perfect.

  24. It’s called Maltflaven chip shops use it because it costs less to buy than vinegar and…… it tastes better. I know because I owned a chip shop.

  25. So its water, Acetic acid and colour. Real Vinegar is water, Acetic acid and natural flavorings. Not much different.

  26. Yes it does matter if I ask for something and pay for it I want to get what I paid for if They are scammers and should be fined

  27. One thing I learned from this video is that Brits put vinegar on their chips like its not a weird thing at all.
    One thing I learned from the comments is that they call the fish and chips shops a "chippy" giving off a slight Australian vibe.

  28. Of course it bloody matters! What next? Non tomato tomato sauce. I expect real vinegar with my fish and chips! Not some made up chemical concoction.

  29. Count yourselves lucky you get this “condiment”, went to a place here in Sweden last week. Fish and chips… but no vinegar. Ketchup. Barbaric I tell you!

  30. It’s not chemically “Very Similar” It’s chemically identical. What’s different are the choices of selected colourings and flavourings, vs left-over organic waste from the brewing process.

  31. Yes. It matters. This is why we have words. Communication. You dont call an apple an orange just because they have similar shapes and have sugar in them. One is not vinegar, it is vinegar substitute. The fact that people dont mind the substitute is inconsequential to the fact it is a substitute. Understand that it matters becuse people forget, and people will slowly degrade things because the natural order of nature is evolve to give the least effort for the greatest gain. For consumers, you need to care or you will get abused.

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