Foundation Coffee – Manchester (UK)

A large mixed-use coffee house in downtown Manchester artfully blends great coffee with light meals and excellent work space.

  • opening times:
    Mon - Fri: 7:30 - 20, Sat: 10 - 17, Sun: 12 - 18
  • wifi:
  • urls:
  • price check:
    Espresso: £2 / Flat White: £2.50
  • machine:
    La Marzocco Strada
  • coffees on offer:
    various espresso and filter roasts by Origin Coffee
  • milk:
    Brake Bros
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Manchester, in the north of England, can certainly be described as a kind of urban phoenix. Its meteoric rise during the industrial revolution was followed by a depressing decline after the Second World War, but despite some tumultuous years here and there, the city always found a way to pick itself back up.

Made famous by the likes of Manchester United, Oasis and Karl Marx, Manchester has always had its very unique character. As a student, I used to visit the city regularly, coming down from more provincial Lancaster up north to enjoy the treats of a bigger city.

Outside view

Outside view

With regards to its specialty coffee scene, Manchester has certainly got a lot to catch up on. While London is largely reaching full saturation, the city on the river Irwell still has heaps of room to grow. It’s not even as chain-infested as you may think.

One great place that has recently moved into an abandoned city center building is Foundation Coffee House. This incredibly spacious coffee bar and eatery has a very minimalistic look and feel, created by No Chintz Design, and offers a mix of booths, single tables, bench-seating and even a small, mobile meeting room.

Bar, windows and tables

Bar, windows and tables

The set up of the bar is no less impressive, featuring a Strada and few rather rare balance syphons. Barista Kyle Spalding offered me a variety of drinks that ranged from a single espresso to a flat white, using both the Resolute blend and the Nicaragua, Finca Los Altos, roasted by Origin Coffee Roasters.

Non-coffee drinkers will be delighted by a healthy selection of loose-leaf teas from Suki and hot chocolates from Kokoa Collection. They even have something called ‘rawnola’. My salmon and lentil salad was decently priced and tasted really good too.

Spacious inside with mobile meeting room at the back

Spacious inside with mobile meeting room at the back

Although Foundation Coffee House doesn’t feel particularly cozy due to its massive size, it still offers a great place to have a coffee break while rolling around the awesome Northern Quarter.


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