Franco Manca

Restaurants , Italian Brixton
Critics' choice
  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • 4 out of 5 stars
(66 user reviews)
118 Love It
Save it
1/5
Jonathan Perugia / Time Out
2/5
Jonathan Perugia / Time Out
3/5
David Axelbank / Time Out
4/5
David Axelbank / Time Out
5/5
David Axelbank / Time Out

With its top-notch, UK-sourced (when possible) ingredients, speedy and friendly service, and rapid turnover, the original Brixton branch of Franco Manca remains, for our money, the best pizza joint in London. Both indoor and outdoor seating overlooks the bustling market arcade. Here you can sate a craving for genuine, Neapolitan-style pizza, with a flavourful slow-rise sourdough crust and a variety of traditional and innovative toppings. Purists will prefer either the tomato, garlic and oregano or the tomato, mozzarella and basil, in season. The tasty chorizo pizza comes in two versions (thick-cut and thin-cut, dried) of the rich, oily Spanish sausage; it’s reminiscent of New York’s ubiquitous pepperoni pizza. Other menu choices and daily specials include a variety of seasonal vegetable and cured meat-laden pizzas that, while of top-quality, we find a little busy. Side salads and the restaurant’s unusual lemonade (murky brown and slightly like an Arnold Palmer, thanks to a tannic under-taste) are highly recommended, being thoughtful additions to the carb-heavy pizza. Wine and beer are also available. The other branches we've visited are fine, but haven’t equalled the original branch’s perfection.

 

Venue name: Franco Manca
Contact:
Address: 4 Market Row
Electric Lane
London
SW9 8LD
Opening hours: Meals served noon-5pm Mon; noon-10.30pm Tue-Sat; noon-10pm Sun
Transport: Tube: Brixton tube/rail
Price: Main courses £5-£7.50
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Average User Rating

4.2 / 5

Rating Breakdown

  • 5 star:42
  • 4 star:10
  • 3 star:2
  • 2 star:8
  • 1 star:4
LiveReviews|66
2 people listening
Ed. T
1 of 1 found helpful
Tastemaker

I'd heard a lot about Franco Mancas from pretty much every source possible, so finally got the chance to pop in this weekend. It's got a short but simple menu, with a good variety in toppings, some cracking starters and even better prices to match! 


All the pizzas are under £7/£8, and the famed sour dough base goes really well with the flavours they use to match. Is it the best pizza in London though? Not quite. Definitely memorable and tasty, but I'd pick Homeslice or Pizza Pilgrim over Franco Manca! 

Emily W
tastemaker

The only bad thing I have to say about Franco Manca is the inevitable queues, especially at their central London branches. I would advise going to Ealing Broadway or Chiswick High Road to avoid this! I personally think the pizzas are one of the best in London, if you like your pizzas heavy on the dough with thick and soft crusts then this is the place for you! The menu is small but exquisitely executed, with only six options to choose from but all using the freshest ingredients possible. A must try! 

Katie N
tastemaker

A delicious and exceptionally popular pizza restaurant that offers consistent quality time and time again. It's a quick meal (unless you have to queue) so unless you're a speedy drinker stick with a glass rather than a bottle of wine as you've often got your pizza before the drink.

Carlos M

Went there a week ago with some friends and was really pleased with the food and service! Definitely worth going

Lizzie W
Tastemaker

This review isn't for the food - because for me, Franco Manca is one of the best priced & tastiest pizza places in London. However the 2* for this place was the service and the place itself. It was grotty, the service was rude and we were sat outside on a bench when it was BLOODY FREEZING!

For food - we shared a burrata (their burrata is amazing - you gotta try!), a cheesy garlic bread and their No.6 (pepperoni pizza - which had plenty of pepperoni this time). My bf went for a No Logo beer and I went for a white wine (both fine). The food came reasonably quickly which was ideal as I was starving and freeeeezing. However actually getting a waitress to take our order took forever as did getting seated even though the table was free and he said he was seating us right away. We had the same issue getting someone to bring the bill, then the card machine but eventually paid up and made a run for the tube station to warm up.

Louise H
Tastemaker

I love Franco Manca's- soft, chewy sourdough, a good variety of toppings, the creamy burrata starters, and very importantly, the price! It's always nice to go somewhere good for dinner and come away with change from a tenner. This branch is located in Brixton Market, which adds to the buzzy atmosphere. There is usually a queue at the weekends as it gets very busy, but staff are efficient and quick at moving people on- not really a place to linger, but there are plenty of places to go nearby for a drink. Is it the best pizza in London? No, but it's still very tasty!

Kai M
moderator

One of the best Pizzas you can have in London, and that too in such a less price..  Taste and quality of the pizza are the best you can expect.... Be ready to expect a long queue to get in the evenings......

Lauren P

I really do not get what all the hype is about, I've heard so many positive reviews and been told to go here a number of times.  I've tried the restaurant twice (to give it a chance) and feel that is it highly overrated. The dough was paper-thin, soggy and under-cooked leading to holes in the pizza and it sticking to the box. The toppings were sparse and the combinations not really particularly appetising or original. The price is fairly decent if the pizza lived up to a basic standard. 

Bulut B

If you're up for soggy pizza, go for it!


I was there on 10/2/2016. The middle of my pizza was so soggy you could actually take the dough, shape it as you like and bake something else. When I protested this to the waiter he said "this is the way we make it, if you order another one it will come excactly the same way but if you don't like it you don't have to pay". 

I still give it 2* because the prices are very competitive. You could go there and eat two soggy pizzas and a have couple of bottles of beer and come out around £20. 

jeaniekarl
Tastemaker

The fact the Franco Manca are due to open their 19th branch within London and still expanding just has to say something. The concept is so simple and the sourdough base makes the pizzas much lighter than normal. There are a variety of toppings and different pizzas you can choose from, the sizes are generous too. Prices are great and they also offer convenient take out. Only thing is that is no booking policy so it’s a case trying your luck and first come, first served. The only disappointment is that they don’t really offer much of a dessert menu but the pizza definitely makes up for that.

 

Elisa R
Tastemaker

The first time I went to Franco Manca was with my Sardinian best friend who demanded I'd try one of these pizzas. Oh loveliness! Taste bud orgasm, enough said. The dough is thin and crispy, the ingredients all more delectable than the other. Last time I went, I tried one of the puddings and I must say it was delicious as well. The only negative thing I'd want to add about the Brixton branch in particular is the fact that you have to queue for ages in the cold of the market so now I always go to the Belsize Park one, which is 5 mins walk away from my house.

Alexander v

Good Toppings - but sparsely thrown onto a very burnt pizza - I probably should give them 1 star but I'm feeling generous by giving them 2 stars 

Sarah V
Tastemaker

Though none of the other great pizza places can beat Franco Manca on price, some of them can actually beat it on taste. In my experience the quality of Franco Manca pizza's may vary depending on which branch of the franchise you are visiting. Luckily, the Brixton original is by far still the best of them all! So if you have never been to a Franco Manca before, make sure your first visit is to the Brixton restaurant, and while you're over there make sure to pop into nearby cocktail bar Seven for great pre- or postdinner cocktails. 

Jorge A.
Staff Writer

I heard a lot about it, so I had to try. Quality/price is a good choice. However, it is not even close to be the best pizza in London

Sarah L

The best pizzas of all London venues! Go and have a try or return once again there, always a pleasure

Hayley P

Best pizza in London. Fact. Many a carb slump has been had due to these yummy sour dough bad boys.

Simona S

Absolutely the best pizza in London and the best place to have fun and enjoy your night or day! Love you guys

TaraD
Tastemaker

I can't get enough of this pizza. It's all about the sourdough base. Everything else placed on top is of the freshest ingredients. The tomato sauce is incredible, so much so I would happily have a pizza with just this sauce. I've been to all the branches across London and they are all consistently great and always have a  buzzing atmosphere. 

South Carolina
Tastemaker

Pizza of the gods! Seriously, this stuff is good. They offer take away so would definitely recommend scoring yourself a box and heading to a sunny spot nearby. Sadly there's no gluten free crust but if you're not bothered about feeding the gluten monster then it's totally worth a try.

Danny H

How this place doesn't have 5 stars across the board is beyond me. It has two things going for it:


1. It is the best pizza I have ever tasted. The sourdough charred crust is honestly a game changer when it comes to pizza crust. And the toppings are fresh, tasty and cooked to perfection.


2. It is so cheap. I mean, not just London cheap, but cheap cheap. Between £5 and £10 for a range of excellently topped pizzas. It's incredible value for money.


The worst thing is, there's a Pizza Express across the road from the one in Balham, and some people still choose to go there instead of Franco Manca. FOOLS!

Eleanor F
Staff Writer

Amazing to see this brilliant pizza place grow - authentic pizza in a beautiful environment. Always lively, personable, fast service, and great for kids. A regular treat that suits most occasions. 

Joshua S

Great place, best pizza in London - with a great atmosphere at this location! 

Diana B

Good pizza - not the best but still good and very affordable. I'd recommend it.

Eugenio

Born and bred in Naples, I can only think that the 5 stars given to Franco Manca are the result of a Time Out critic who has never actually tasted a real Neapolitan pizza (and I'm talking Sorbillo - http://www.sorbillo.it; Starita a Materdei - http://www.pizzeriastarita.it and Cafasso, to give a few illustrious examples). There is no doubt that Franco Manca's pizze are aesthetically very pleasing. And I can almost forgive the clammy Somerset mozzarella on the pizza itself (but not the freezer-cold mozzarella and burrata starters), but the soul of any pizza is in the dough - and Franco Manca's dough is chewy and gummy. Each to his own, of course, but any self-respecting Neapolitan would steer clear. Surprisingly, the best pizza I've had in London is at Rosso Pomodoro in Camden. No contest.

wht

If you fancy the idea of eating pizza toppings on a naan bread this is the place for you. Its tasty, just soggy.

antonio

the best pizza in london? the best pizza in britain? then, do not eat any pizza in the UK! After all those positive reviews, what a disappointment!!!! To be fair, ingredients were good, but my pizza barely saw the oven and was undercooked. Big queue as a reason for it? Do not queue then.

Emad

Hiaaa You didnt try Pizza Franco Manca yet !!!!! Go what r u waiting for?

Dina

The best Neapolitan pizza ever You MUST try it , if you want to discover london & Italy together Make sure when you are in Brixton eat Pizza Franco Manco .. oh no sorry I meant make sure when you are in London ;)

Amy

After reading so many positiv reviews I decided to visit the FM branch on Northcote road. There are 6 different pizza choices. The staff was attentive and quick and the place was vibrant but the Pizza was nowhere near as good as the other people say it is. Taste is of course subjective and everybody has a different taste but overall I wouldn't give it a 5 star rating. But then again where do you get a Pizza for under £7 in a restaurant and they even don't charge service. I would say Value for Money 4 Stars. Pizza taste 2 stars.

Anne

Love the place, love the food, love the atmosphere. Definitely the best pizzas in London (and the best Lemonade!)

Nicola

These Pizzas are incredible - They beat the best pizza i've ever had which was in Tuscany in 1978 - i was 6 so remembering THAT Pizza speaks volumes - and beating it speaks even more, maybe the whole book. YAMMY.

Dan

I have dedicated my life to eating Pizza in London and dispite Pizza Metro Pizza running it close, this is my favourite pizza place in the whole of London. Long may it continue!

Nick

The best pizza outside of Italy my Italian friend and I ever had. By a long way.

Sabrina

Very nice place to go in Brixton, pizzas are really delicious, simple and original and service is always good. Yes, sometimes you need to queue, but hey, it is always nice to discover things around in Brixton village, I simply love to queue for restaurants there!

Mal

Sadly our food didn't look anywhere near as good as in the picture here. The pizza was hard and overcooked, with little by way of topping. I had mushroom and rocket, really expected some tomato passata as a base but it was hard to find and probably not as much as two mushrooms. The rocket was just dropped on top. My partner said his pizza was tasty but a bit too cold when it was finally delivered. Really disappointed as we had heard great reviews about this place. It was crowded, but it looks like people are here for the social ambiance rather than the food in front of them. Sad disappointment.

Salomé

Pizza was undercooked, hardly any toppings (3 miserable pieces of aubergine hidden under 9 rocket leaves)... nothing special really! A disappointing lunch!

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