IT somehow remains cool and calm, while sited in one of the Costa del Sol’s most emblematic – and bustling – locations to dine.
Leone is a scarily good addition to frontline Puerto Banus, writes Jon Clarke
That’s Leone, that has roared to life this summer in Puerto Banus with a strikingly good menu and equally good vibes.
Rubbing shoulders with the likes of Sinatras, Picasso and Jacks, it is never easy to get noticed in this high-end busy Marbella marina.
But Leone counts on hip design and a great use of light, as well as pale/neutral colours to make its debut.
After a few key menu changes over its first couple of months, it is starting to brim with confidence.
A part-Asiatic menu broadens out into a wide enough palate, with enough original and off-beat dishes to stand out above the nearby hordes.
The duck terrine starter with foie gras marinated in cognac is a good example, while the ‘fresh’ Spring rolls, with a Nuoc sauce, were excellent and original, as were the superb Rock Shrimps in tempura.
The best starter, by far, however was the beef tartare, served as a sort of triple decker sandwich, but with wafer thin bread and spicy capers. A small serving of French fries made up the melange.
There was a nice looking salad menu, in particular a creative nectarine and feta number, with olives and cucumbers.
For mains I loved the mussels, which came lightly grilled and served with parsley and garlic, while the salmon in an Asiatic sauce and served on a banana leaf was super.
The wine list was not expansive, but varied enough, and our waiter, Naf, who I’ve known from other restaurants in the area, steered us towards an excellent verdejo, Meraldis, oaked for 13 months in cask and with a lovely body.
He talked us into trying the Paris-Brest choux pastry pudding, which was a praline buttercream twist on profiteroles, that I’m still thinking about today, two weeks later.
Leone, Front line, Puerto Banus. www.leonebanus.com 952 811 621
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