Laminated Baguettes are in your future.
ALF opens today in Chelsea Market.
Good morning my friends!
I know it’s Passover (Chag Sameach to all who observe and hope you had a lovely seder or two), and it seems this is the second bread post I have written this week. Admittedly, this is probably not the best way to commemorate the Jews’ Exodus from Egypt, but it is what it is. I could not let the opening of ALF Bakery from industry veteran Amadou Ly pass us by unnoticed.
Have you heard of Amadou? He’s got a pretty impressive pedigree. He’s cooked at some of the most respected and innovative fine dining kitchens in NYC as a pastry chef and chocolatier —Jean-Georges, Insieme, and All Good Things, to name a few. Then he started tinkering with natural fermenting and artisanal baking at the iconic Arcade Bakery where was mentored by bread guru Roger Gural for five years before it closed in 2019.
Are you already craving brioche and babka? Good! Now before you go to ALF, be sure and subscribe if you haevn’t already!
Now comes his own place, ALF Bakery, which opens today in Chelsea Market and offers freshly baked breads, viennoiserie, pastries, and sandwiches. He’s a lamination man, and offers croissants with almonds and chocolate, pain au chocolat, laminated brioche, and more—pastries that thrive from their many layers of flour and butter, becoming light, crispy, flaky, buttery and fantastic. Also, he makes a chocolate babka that will give Breads a fair fight for the top babka prize.
He’s also fascinated by the fermentation process and has his own take on how to get a loaf to become its best self. Amadou strongly believes in minimal interaction during the bread making process: le pain vivant (living bread), so he lets it do its thing and intervenes only when necessary to keep things on track.
Inspired by the traditional boulangeries of France, he bakes at staggered times during the day to continually offer the freshest products possible — that means you can go in the morning, at lunch or even after “work” and find bread that’s warm and cozy.
He signature bread combines his artisanal baguette with a laminated dough for his “laminated baguette,” a baguette wrapped in intricately scored laminated dough. He makes these plain, with sesame + poppy seeds, and ham and gruyere layered under the lamination. I know!
The opening menu features several traditional style of breads (baguettes, epi, sourdough loaves, miche), viennoiserie, and pastries (chocolate babka with ganache made from scratch, pain perdu).
In addition to daily specials, highlights will include several signature and unique products that Amadou has spent years evolving and perfecting, including:
Laminated baguette - a baguette wrapped in intricately scored laminated dough. Available plain, or with sesame + poppy seeds, and ham and gruyere layered under the lamination
Rosemary black olive fougasse focaccia
Laminated brioche - is laminated with extra butter that results in a richer and lighter loaf with beautiful swirled appearance
Flan du boulanger - a traditional, rustic-style French tart made with flan (light egg custard) filling in puff pastry
ALF will also offer sandwiches, including ham and cheese with butter on baguette, Tunisian tuna served open-face on sourdough, and chicken with roast peppers on focaccia.
For the opening, the bakery will be open Wednesday - Sunday from 9am to 6pm with plans to expand days of operation in the future.