01 Mar Lé Léé, Northcote
Macedonian cuisine isn’t one that I’m familiar with, and restaurants in Melbourne are hard to find. Luckily it’s much easier to explore now that Lé Léé just opened up in Northcote.
The menu is focused on sharing plates, in line with their traditional communal dining style. The meal might begin with starters like lightly crumbed Fried Zucchini, dips, cured meats, or a tasty and refreshing Shopska Salad with tomato, cucumber, onion and grated fetta.
Mains are largely warming dishes. The Banica is a crisp and flakey spiral pastry filled with leek and cheese. Slow-roasted Pork Belly delivers on the crackling, and the meat itself retains its juices. Vardarsko Grne – a slow-cooked claypot of vegetables, pork and chicken – comes with a bread topping that can be eaten alongside it. A surprise favourite for many is the baked beans. Wipe away all those memories of canned beans. This is one flavoursome dish that has much more depth of flavour than just tomato.
Their Macedonian-style Visnja Baklava contains sour cherries, and has a caramelised topping, but is softer and in places, almost custard-like compared to the baklava you might be more used to. The Tufekija Poached Pear is filled with a delicious walnut filling and comes with a scoop of stretchy-style ice cream, but if you’ve got a sweet tooth, the more saccharine Trileche (Milk Cake) might fit the bill.
The food at Lé Léé is hearty and cooked with passion. I can foresee another visit in the future – those stews will be particularly enticing during colder weather!
Disclaimer: I was invited to Lé Léé as a guest, however, opinions expressed here are purely my own, and are based on my experience at the time.
236 High St
Northcote, VIC, 3070
(03) 9001 6507