Time Out says
With its fine service and elegantly set plates, Sydney's CBD scores a refined new laneway lunch spot
On paper, Restaurant Leo is a total catch: created by Lumi Dining owner and chef, Federico Zanellato, and ex-Est, Marque and Oscillate Wildly restauranteur Karl Firla. Thankfully, it works in practice, too. Tucked into the laneway between Ash Street and the birdcages of Angel Place, it's slick without being ostentatious.
With its Italian plates, white tablecloths and focus on attuned service, Restaurant Leo occupies a space between hyper-charged fine dining and casual eatery: it prides itself on the full experience, as well as fresh, beautifully plated dishes. Leo tends towards hearty classics you'd enjoy by the Mediterranean coast: there are rock oysters, lobster maccheroncini, and a risotto with cuttlefish and peas made with koshihikari rice, a type of Japanese grain.
For those wanting heavier fare, there's wagyu with peperonata, as well as cuts of fish, pork loin and a veal saltimbocca. The idea, according to restaurant manager Alex Grenouiller, is to just "...go with the season." The day before, explains Grenouiller, the maccheroncini featured scampi picked up on the morning's run to the fish market. As for dessert, pick the pear and almond tart for a smooth denouement or keep escalating the affair with a creamy, liquor-soaked tiramisu. And for a handy bit of trivia to impress your lunch buddies? As Grenouiller explains, the name Leo combines the 'L' from Lumi, and the 'O' from Oscillate Wildly which sandwich an 'e', the Italian conjunction for 'and'.
Leo caters to the CBD’s office-going crowd – or it did before the mass exodus – opening its doors for lunch Tuesday to Friday, and for dinner on Thursday and Friday only. As workers start trickling back to the city, think of it as your trial run to the weekend. A hump-day bowl of pork and fennel strozzapreti and a glass of rosé never hurt anyone – especially when that rosé is off a wine list curated by sommelier Fabio Sercecchi of The Star's Balla. (We told you it looked good on paper.)
1 Angel Place
|Opening hours:||Tue-Fri 12pm-3pm; Thu-Fri, 5.30pm-late|