Camberwell is spoilt for good eateries, but the relatively new Maloko offers something different: it is a vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free haven.
Set in what used to be Paul's Continental — a landmark (albeit slightly shambolic) Greek Cypriot deli — this creperie has an odd layout, but its nooks and crannies only add to the appeal. It boasts charmingly mismatched furniture, art-bedecked walls and a sackcloth-coated ceiling — a combo that would not be out of place in Totnes. Its perma-smiley Cameroonian owner Evagle is anxious to mix with the local art community, and encourages visitors to express themselves on his blackboard-painted chimney breast.
A delightfully informal system means that customers are invariably drawn into the little kitchen at the back to place their orders, which is a treat in itself as it enables the curious to observe the not-as-easy-as-it-looks art of crepe cookery. The menu comprises sweet crepes and savoury galettes: the latter are made from buckwheat, which is not wheat at all but rather a cousin of the rhubarb (but y'all knew that, yes?), rendering them eminently snackable for those with food intolerances.
We ordered a sweet potato, quinoa, spinach, mushroom and cheese (vegan cheese is available) galette: it was large, perfectly crispy on the outside, beautifully garnished and drizzled with a grape must sauce. It was, frankly, utterly awesome: we'll be going back for sure. The only thing lacking was perhaps a freshly squeezed juice, but we hear that these are in the pipeline.
Our lunch, including coffee, came to just £6.50.
Maloko is at 65, Camberwell Church Street, SE5 8QZ; tel: 020 3305 8913. It is open from 8.30am ish through 'til 10pm ish 7 days a week.
Disclaimer: We review anonymously and pay for all our meals/drinks.