Amoul has hit on a winning formula by finding a homely space on a villagey street amid the lavish white-stuccoed palaces of W9; filling it with flowers, candles and artistic black and white family photos; and serving above-average home-style cooking at prices the area’s residents can afford. It’s a charming spot, with engaging waitresses and Amoul herself – of Lebanese origin, with a self-published cookbook to her name – moving solicitously between tables and the kitchen. The food is predominantly Middle Eastern (including the breakfast menu at weekends, which contains the likes of eggs with yoghurt and cinnamon), though there’s also a strong French presence (steak, poussin), the execution of which influences the Levantine dishes. Samkeh harra came as a piquant fillet of sea bass with a side of spinach and a pot of tahina, rather than a heavy bowl of rice and sauce mixed in; and the flavour of loubieh bi zeit (green beans and tomatoes) owed more to Bordeaux than Beirut. But the food is none the worse for that – everything is freshly made, and around here, people don’t blink at the premium price tags for what are essentially café dishes.
14 Formosa Street
|Opening hours:||Lunch served 9am-4pm Sat; 10am-1.15pm Sun. Dinner served 6-10pm Tue-Sat|
|Transport:||Tube: Warwick Avenue tube|
|Price:||Main courses £13.20-£22.50|
|Do you own this business?|
Average User Rating
4 / 5
- 5 star:3
- 4 star:0
- 3 star:0
- 2 star:0
- 1 star:1
One of the only places in London that I feel at home. The food captures memories of my childhood and you can sense that the dishes are made with love and passion. Definitely more than just a restaurant.
Amoul and her restaurant are the Jewel of Maida Vale. But don't just ask me. Check out Jay Rayners review in the Guardian.
Absolutely horrible experience here! The owner is a nightmare, the food really is sub par on every level. I was abused by the owner for simply politely pointing out that I did not ask the extra hummus that they for some reason decided to give me, when querying my bill and why this had been added twice. Instead of being gracious about it, the owner took the rudest approach possible with me and actually went back and added additional service charge to the bill (even though you go up to the till to order) for even daring to ask such a question and insisted that I never come back again. I couldn't believe it and was shocked. One of the most bizarre encounters I've ever had and what an insane over reaction!
Aside from that, I think the food portions are small and the food very average to say the least. I think it is catered towards people who aren't that well versed in what proper middle eastern food should taste like and cost and takes advantage of this by vastly over charging them for average, simply prepared unremarkable food and modest portions.
Needless to say, I will never go back there again and urge everyone else to steer well clear of this place!
The food at Amoul's is fantastic, the menu changes based on what is available and in season while maintaining a home-style Lebanese cuisine. And one must keep in mind that this is traditional and above all, regional, Lebanese cooking, so it won't have the taste of your corner Kebab shop or Edgware Road diner. These dishes, made from scratch, are not 'cafe-fare' and are quite labour intensive. The prices really are not that expensive in comparison to other places in the area, and the quality is so much better than most of the other restaurants in Maida Vale.