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The Black Friar, Salford: ‘An ambitious pub that’s evolving quickly’ – restaurant review

Don’t be put off by the uncompromising location or lofty pricing, the cooking here is big, bullish and beautifulThe Black Friar, 41-43 Blackfriars Road, Salford M3 7DB (0161 667 9555). Starters and small plates £5–£15; mains £15–£38; desserts £8–£9; wines from £25 a bottleViewed from the air, the Black Friar in Salford could look a little like Charlie Bucket’s rackety family home in the original movie of Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory. It’s a humble old redbrick Victorian building of just two storeys, hemmed in by towering grey stone and steel apartment blocks. It seems to be an afterthought – the corner site that no one thought to develop. And indeed, it was empty and derelict, staring blank-eyed out over the dual carriageway for 15 years. Twice, fires ripped through it. Then the building was refurbished and pressed into service as the marketing suite for the handsome newbuilds going up around it. Continue reading…