For someone who claims as not being a fan of chain restaurants, I’ve been eating in a lot of them lately. What can I do? London’s dining scene is so diverse and so competitive that even chain restaurants need to make sure that they’re on top of their game so they won’t be overshadowed by other establishments. I used to runaway from chain restaurants like a plague (specially when I’m traveling) but I keep seeing myself in one for the past few days.
The latest addition to my growing list of chain restaurants worth a visit is Franco Manca, a name equivalent to sourdough pizza here in London which is what their business is all about.
Have I mentioned that I also hate hipster restaurants? No? Well I do and the funny thing is, Franco Manca screams hipster faster than you can say avocado as soon as you step in their industrial restaurant design. We went to their branch in Richmond by the way, I’m not sure if this hipster aesthetic is the same in all of its branches.
So basically, Franco Manca combines the two things that I hate about restaurants and I was so sure about myself that I am going to hate it but dammit, their pizza’s oh so good! The flavorful slow-rise sourdough crust made me forget the fact that I rolled my eyes when they served a No Logo lager in a true hipster style.
They had a very short menu which I actually liked, no frills and no fuss. Each of their pizza comes with simple and fresh UK-sourced ingredients which will make you think that it’s probably going to be bland. The burst of flavors as soon as you take the first bite will surprise you.
Price is also very reasonable (a rarity in the hipster world), one of their business missions is that its most expensive pizza will always be 50p cheaper than a margherita at Pizza Express. I think Franco Manca just converted me into a chain restaurant-loving hipster. And yes, I’m going back there for sure.
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