• Roxii Hoare-Smith

Cocktails, Cidre & Crêpes at L’Ami Malo

A short walk from bustling Liverpool Street station is Artillery Passage, a small alleyway filled with a wonderful selection of bars and restaurants. It is said that this passage was used one of the settings for Diagon Alley in the Harry Potter films – and you’ll totally see why when visiting.

I visited L’Ami Malo which is tucked away on Artillery Passage and offers a unique taste of Brittany. As L’Ami Malo is all about crêpes and cidre. French owners, Emilien Lesourd and Vincent Couvreur, have taken inspiration from the coastal town of St Malo in Brittany – famous for its delicious galettes – and their childhood memories of visits to local crêperies, to create a distinctly modern (with just a hint of nostalgia) version of a classic crêperie.

L’Ami Malo also serves a delightful range of craft ciders to match with crêpes and galettes. Exquisite cocktails are inspired by speakeasy sensations and of course, the wine list is exclusively French with a carefully created selection of blanc, rouge and rosé bins sitting alongside champagnes.

It was a tough decision choosing a drink with such impressive cidre and cocktail lists, but I decided to get the best of both and opt for a cidre cocktail. I ordered the refreshing Pommeau Spritz, a blend of Pommeau de Normandie, Calvados, apple and cidre.

L’Ami Malo is well known for it’s maki rolls so we had to try these to start. The buckwheat maki rolls combine Japanese aesthetics with French traditions. We shared the smoke salmon maki rolls – smoked salmon and creme fraiche wrapped in a crepe and topped with Keta Caviar and dill.

A delicious starter which was perfect for sharing…but almost too good to share!!

We also ordered the Buckwheat goats cheese croquettes which were absolutely incredible. I could have eaten plates upon plates of these. The dish came served with thin slices of beetroot which complemented the goats cheese which just melted in your mouth. A dish you must try when visiting L’Ami Malo, I would order this again in a heartbeat.

For mains my guest opted for the confit duck leg which came served with braised red cabbage, a caramelised pear, and tenderstem broccoli on a crêpe.

I decided to order the Slow Cooked Ox Cheek in Red Wine crêpe with confit baby onion, heritage carrot and buckwheat polenta. It made up in flavour what in lacked in being photogenic…The ox cheek was so flavoursome and so tender. With such a large selection of savoury crêpes to choose from, I was happy that I had made a good choice.

It is interesting how L’Ami Malo have created so many different but so very delicious crêpe dishes showing just how versatile crêpes are.

We had a fantastic seat next to the open plan kitchen so we could see our dishes being freshly made.

Another diner on the table next to us heard us contemplating dessert and being French he recommended we try the chocolate and pear crêpe, so we decided to share it washed down with Kir Normande – a twist on your usual Kir Royale however instead mixed with cidre.

L’Ami Malo has a delicious selection of sweet crêpes including a Lemon and blueberry souffle crêpe, and eton mess maki rolls. The pear crêpes came served sprinkled with almonds and a scoop of smooth and creamy vanilla ice cream and smothered in chocolate sauce. Absolutely delicious however I thought the pear lacked flavour not making it a top choice for me.

L’Ami Malo serves undeniably good food with friendly, flawless service. It’s a hidden gem in the heart of the city just waiting to be discovered.

L’Ami Malo 14 Artillery Passage London E1 7LJ

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