The Company Shed is primarily a fishmonger, but the cafe side of the operation is an increasingly popular sideline for owners Richard and Heather Hayward, who also have an oyster farm. Located among the salt marshes and boatyards of West Mersea island, most of the fish is bought from local fishermen, who dock just 200m along the shore. There's no kitchen and no frills; instead, plain tables are squeezed among benches and you bring your own bread and wine. So, why bother visiting? Because never before will you have tasted such fresh-from-the-sea fish: order a seafood platter and tuck into a whole crab, prawns, mackerel, smoked salmon, cockles (when in season) and giant, juicy crevettes - all for only £8.50. Lobster is often available too (£10.50 per lb) and, well, whatever else the tide has brought in.