So I finally made it over to Franco Manca yesterday, despite living less than 2 miles away (but such is the life of someone w/ a 4-month old baby). Anyhow, on to my initial thoughts...
It wasn't difficult to find, although it's definitely in a unique spot. As has been mentioned before, it is extremely convenient if you need to satisfy your wig-purchasing requirements at the same time. We arrived a little after 2, and most tables were occupied. We ordered -- one Margherita, one Chorizo, a salad and 500ml homemade lemonade.
The lemonade and salad appeared almost instantly. The salad was organic, and while it was fresh and fairly tasty, it consisted of lettuce, radishes and far too much fennel. It was more of a fennel salad in fact. I appreciate that using sourced organic produce, you can't be too choosy with all of the veg, but just a bit more lettuce and less fennel would have been a touch better. The lemonade was made on the premises, cloudy, sharp and delicious.
On to the pizza -- the sauce has been discussed before, and the flavour was a great balance of the acidity of the tomatoes with the right amount of salt. The cheese wasn't bad at all; I've bought some delicious mozz. di bufala from Borough Market, but this cheese certainly wasn't amiss on the pizza. At the very least, it took nothing away from it.
And the main event, the crust -- well, I wasn't that impressed. Let me rephrase that: I was blown away. It was absolutely amazing, by far the best crust I've had in the 4 years I've lived in London. Lovely charred bits, soft middle, with a very earthy/yeasty flavour that wan't overwhelming at all.
It was just a great experience from start to finish. Our pizzas arrived less than 5 minutes after we ordered, and I still can't believe the prices -- £4.60 for the Margherita, £5.60 for the Chorizo, £1.50 for the salad and £2.00 for the lemonade.
I can't wait to go back next week.
[And as an aside, I went to culinary school this year, and when we had our teaching demonstration on starters, the instructor brought in the Metro article that she had cut out to point out how old they could be and that there are people out there who are *experts*!]