FRESCA: Exciting venture

FRESCA: Exciting venture from Fresca Italian Restaurant

By: Fresca Italian Restaurant  20/11/2011
Keywords: The Best Italian Restaurant near Manchester

THE location of restaurants has, like our shopping habits, changed over the years. There was a time when if you had said you were heading for a meal on an industrial estate you would have been laughed at. Well there are good examples in the borough that, while such an address is hardly glitzy, what it offers is easy access and lots of parking. And the latest venture to try such a location is Fresca. You have to go over the crossroads from Delph towards Uppermill and then turn left into the newly-developed Gatehead Business Park. Smart if ordinary green and stone buildings but a quick look around the car park at the up-market vehicles and personalised plates and it is obvious the Saddleworth set have had no problem finding it. Red-carpet style roping guides you to the entrance to what is the ground floor of a two-storey unit and red is certainly the colour when you get inside. Theres a bar to your left, the open-plan kitchens straight ahead of you and bright red high-stool and sofa seating in a waiting area with sparkly black tops.Wow factor. First impressions were very encouraging and it was not long before one of the smiling young staff members was on hand to take us through to our table. There's more of the red in the dining area with four large eight-seater bays down the right and over 100 more covers where light wood is the order of the day in tables, chairs and flooring. Above you, silver ducting is made a feature along with wire-strung lights on a fairly low ceiling though even at my 6ft-plus I did not find this restrictive. The restaurant was filling up nicely by the time we got around to ordering and there was a buzz about the place and a real mix of ages, from young families all the way through to an elderly couple being talked carefully through the delights of an antipasti starter for two by another of the smart waiters. A look at the menu and with pastas and pizzas aplenty, the appealing draw for the families was obvious. But that was for another day for us. We had come to see what Fresca had to offer and the answer to that was well-prepared creations, beautifully presented. What was impressive was that each serving came in and on different shaped dishes and plates, as though each an artistic creation and that thought had been given to each detail. Full marks. I went for a spinach and watercress risotto with broad beans and poached duck egg (5.50, though it could have been a main for 8.95). It came a striking green and I loved the contrast of the rice and the egg. It was not to Mrs Ws liking, though I think that was more to do with the fact that she adored her choice of buffalo mozzarella with roasted Mediterranean vegetables and pesto (5.95) and was not for swapping halfway. It was a similar story on the mains. Roast chicken supreme, polenta, pancetta and tarragon sauce (14.95) for Mrs W and she swiftly declared mine too salty. Chicken just to her liking more like. However, no complaints from my side as I had gone for the Hake (15.50) which was served with cockles and capers (hence the salty) and I devoured it. We added a couple of side dishes in hand-cut chips and a scrumptious tomato and onion salad. The portions were such that we were well fed without being overfed and after a short break ventured into the desserts. I went for fig and almond tart that came with a very tasty milk ice cream while Mrs W finished off with a rhubarb compote with granita ice cream. The waiter politely informed us this was a cold dish before we ordered. Again small details but important to avoid disappointments. We polished off with two latte coffees. With a drink on arrival the bill came to just over £70, which is on the expensive side but we are in Saddleworth here. Time will tell, but this is an excellent start for the new enterprise.

Keywords: The Best Italian Restaurant near Manchester

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