It’s always a buzz to get a table at the hottest new restaurant in town, and even more pleasing when it lives up to the hype.
Lesa, the grown up upstairs sister to cheeky Embla, has been a long time coming but once you walk in to this moody, self-assured yet welcoming space, it instantly makes you feel connected and at home.
For this reason, it is a perfect place to cocoon for the evening with good friends on a rainy Melbourne night.
The offer is a 4 course limited choice menu of intriguing tastes designed to surprise. First course featured a choice of raw flounder, heirloom beetroot or veal tartare dishes; our second courses of a delicately shaved squid in a fine broth of clam, parsley and pistachio and a chicken porridge with chestnut, satisfyingly rich in umami, lifted up the ante…then for thirds, there was a beautifully balanced hapuka with spinach, sweetly cooked shallot napped in fennel butter, and a tender pink pork that was offset with crisp kale and pickled walnut.
Sweets are ice cream centred with defining flavours – preserved berries with jasmine rice ice cream, cultured butter ice cream with nashi, camomile ice cream with green apple – each distinct and texturally balanced.
Food presentation follows the trend to understated elegance, emphasising that it’s flavour first that really counts here. Yes, flavour first, but it is underpinned by high class technique coming out of that already smooth running open kitchen.
This is a restaurant where all the dots connect…the ambience, the food and the wine…
If you can manage to get a table, bring your friends and build on that connection too!