Friska is an establishment in Bristol where the first branch was opened back in 2009. Since then they have slowly expanded and they are moving north! Their Manchester concession is located inside Bright Building at Manchester Science Park, a stone’s through from the University of Manchester South Campus and not too far from the hospitals. I was invited to the building launch so here I will tell you about Friska’s food!*
Bright Building is home to collaborative workspaces with some interesting technology and unique spaces. If you are here for Friska, though, don’t be swayed by the large entrance! Entering through the rotating doors, Friska is located inside and on the left.
Friska has a fairly small counter area within Bright Building. There is nearby seating for you to consume your food, or if you’re like me, you’ll retreat to the outside world with your goodies. Friska specialises in making fast food that’s healthy and with the cold weather coming in, it’s nice that they have hot food options too! Their online menu clearly lists allergens and they cater to all sorts of dietary requirements.
Friska sells a wide variety of drinks that are equal to a lot of chain store, both hot and cold. At the moment, their coffee beans are sourced from their base in Bristol, but I’m hoping they will adopt local roasters such as Ancoats Coffee Co. Their pyramid tea bags are from Canton Tea Co, a company that’s based in London; I tried their Mango Noir and it has a very subtle mango flavour within the body of a nice black tea. Having said that, I would welcome Friska supporting Northern tea company, Brew Tea Co. There is soy milk for those who do not take cow’s milk. The only thing missing from their repertoire is a matcha latte!
I had the pleasure of trying their butternut and black bean dopiaza hot box and two burritos. They were all cooked well with the dopiaza being my favourite of the three, a good flavour and not oily. The burritos were decently sized with fresh ingredients, a good option if you want a healthier burrito compared to the ones served at the University of Manchester’s Eats Restaurant nearby. At Friska, these burritos are priced at £5.25, more than the Universities. The hot boxes are £5.50 and probably my go-to meal from Friska with seasonal rotating menus; at the moment as well as the dopiaza they have Lebanese meatballs and gumbo. The hot pots are smaller portions of these and are smaller to the point I don’t think they are worth getting unless you really want something light.
Friska sells a selection of sweet treats for around £2, but I’m unsure if the selection rotates. For the launch, they had some honey themed cakes specially made to celebrate Manchester’s work bee theme. The honey rocky road was gorgeous but I especially loved the honey and bergamot cake! If they sold these regularly, I’d be visiting more often!
Overall rating and comments
6/10: -1 for the size of the hot pots. I think there’s just not enough food in these to merit the £4.50 price tag. -1 for not having local coffee or tea, -2 for not having the honey themed cakes in as standard. This is a personal deduction, I admit, as I adored these cakes so much and am severely disappointed I can’t get these again. The building is open only on weekdays 8am – 4pm, so it’s only worth coming to if you work nearby or happen to be in the area on your day off. As it’s located within the Manchester Science Park, you could come here after a visit to the Manchester Museum or Whitworth Art Gallery.
Would visit again?
I think I would if I was trying to avoid the students on Oxford Road!
Address: The Bright Building, Lloyd St South, Manchester M15 6SX
Have you heard of Friska? Do you like honey cakes?
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*I was invited to the launch of Friska and food was provided for free at the event.