What a lovely evening at Papilles, a cafe by day and a wine and ‘frapas’ bar by night – the staff were so friendly and knowledgeable and it has a real neighbourhood bar feel to it.
So what is Frapas I hear you ask! Well, it is French tapas….! Papilles focuses it entire wine and food menu on organic local produce and wines from France (or French winemakers) and offers a number of Frapas dishes.
The wine list is extensive with over 50 wines being served by the glass, with others being offered by carafe or bottle. Anne, who served us for the evening, is so knowledgeable when it came to the wine, it felt like I was actually on a wine tasting course! The ‘Wine Flight’ excited me – choose 3 50ml glasses of wine from the menu (you can mix and match) for only £7.50 – a brilliant way to try new wines without breaking the bank. I opted for a white, rose and red and asked Anne to choose for us. We had the Canon du Marechal Muscat-Viognier, IGP Côtes Catalanes (white) Château Beaulieu Côtes de Provence (rose) and Château Val Joanis, Côtes du Lubéron (red). Rather surprisingly for a non red wine drinker, I actually liked the choice of red (I must be growing up!).
Frapas wise we chose the Charcuterie Board with Rosette Saucisson , Coeur de Jambon (heart of the ham), Wild boar Saucisson and Coppa Française, which is served with a fresh bread basket. The meat was so tasty and fresh and came beautifully presented with a small knife and fork attached to a magnet on the board (I want one!)
We also tried the Crêpe Picarde (originally from Picardy in France) which is a pancake filled with Ham, Mushrooms, Béchamel and Cheese and cooked in the oven – melts in your mouth! For the first time, I also had Mini Raclette – layers of Raclette cheese, potatoes and Auvergne Ham, cooked in the oven, which was also tasty!
Given the level of service, Papilles sees a lot of repeat customers, which makes it feel more like a friendly local bar. The atmosphere is chilled and is great for a quieter catch up with friends or a date night and is perfectly located just two minutes from Old Street, slightly away from the hustle and bustle.
Papilles is also open in the day for breakfast and lunch, so looking forward to visiting then too!