/Brixton's Franco Manca

Brixton's Franco Manca

Taking a page from the London Eater‘s guide to dining in London, I took the short trip to Brixton from my London abode on Saturday afternoon. My culinary destination of the day was Franco Manca, a hole-in-the-wall pizza joint serving Neapolitan style pies in a no-frills setting. Apparently famous for its queues, we got there at 4pm and were seated immediately inside beside the pizza counter. Our order was taken before we even sat down. A master of turning tables, Franco’s servers have you in and out in less than 30 minutes. It’s one of the reasons the place manages to stay in business while open only five hours a day (from noon to 5pm). The main reason, however, is that Franco Manca serves a fairly impressive substitute for la vera pizza napoletana some 2000km from Naples. The dough is that same thick rim with a flat, doughy center found in Naples and the consistency is nearly identical. Only the toppings fall a bit short. The cheese is alright, but lacks some of the natural elasticity of melted mozzarella and the pinkish-brown ham does not resemble anything you would find on a pizza in Italy. Then again, I am spoiled by (at least) monthly visits to Di Matteo, Sorbillo, and I Decumani where Neapolitan pizza reaches its full potential. While not quite the same as the real thing, Franco Manca scores pretty high points in my book.

2016-01-13T10:34:45+00:00 January 4th, 2010|Categories: Carbs, Food & Wine, London, Naples & Campania, Pizza, Restaurants|10 Comments


  1. youngandfoodish January 7, 2010 at 9:53 am - Reply

    Terrific and informed post. You’re right about the mozza.

  2. Barrafina, London January 23, 2010 at 5:59 pm - Reply

    […] I’ve spent in London, I’ve eaten an insane amount of great food, some British, some Italian, and at Barrafina in Soho, quite a bit of Spanish. This 23-seat restaurant on Frith Street is a […]

  3. luke February 25, 2010 at 11:10 pm - Reply

    so as an expert in italian food, where would you find the best pizza in london?

    • Katie February 25, 2010 at 11:15 pm - Reply

      Well, I’ve only tried a few places in London and Franco Manca has been the best so far. But Princi on Wardour Street has pizza al taglio that is half decent.

  4. luke February 25, 2010 at 11:32 pm - Reply

    i have tried princi and it was good for pizza slices to go but i didn’t enjoy the dining experience there. I’m looking for a place that i can go for dinner and have a bottle of wine, which isn’t self service. Do you have any suggestions?

    • Katie February 25, 2010 at 11:38 pm - Reply

      Well, short of hopping a flight to Rome or Naples, I’m not really sure where to direct you in London. Franco Manca closes at 5pm and, from what i hear has some really crap wine, so that’s out. I went to La Smorfia in West Hampstead on Saturday and the pizza was awful but the calzone was ok. They definitely have wine. Aside from that, I dont know what to tell you, luke. Perhaps it is time that I turn my research focus from London’s best burger to London’s best pizza…

  5. London Food Wrap-Up March 5, 2010 at 1:27 am - Reply

    […] Franco Manca: Neapolitan Pizza in the Brixton Market. Yeah, it’s not Naples, but I’ll take it. […]

  6. […] Franco Manca: A Neapolitan pizzeria serving pretty close to the real thing in the Brixton Market. […]

  7. […] to an adjacent neighborhoods was all it took to improve matters. Such journeys have brought me to Franco Manca in Brixton, Wuli Wuli in Camberwell, Ganapathi in Peckham, The Greenwich Union in Greenwich, and, […]

  8. […] Franco Manca: A Neapolitan pizzeria serving pretty close to the real thing in the Brixton Market. Inexpensive. […]

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