Fish and chips: The United Kingdom's best-known food is no stranger to Tokyo. You can find it at almost every Irish, Scottish and English pub in the city. Many versions are worthy. Some are good. But very few do it right. Not like they do it at Malins.

It's only a bit over two months since this upstart, pint-sized eatery opened in Roppongi, right across from Tokyo Midtown. But that's quite long enough to establish that it's the real deal, and it is setting a new benchmark for this classic British fare.

Bright, friendly and spotlessly clean, Malins is little bigger than a hole-in-the-wall. You head to the hatch at the back, order and pay, then wait for your food to arrive. Although there is some simple seating on high stools out front, this is certainly not destination dining.