Leaves & Fishes
Add: 737 Lovedale Road, Lovedale NSW 2320
Tel: +61 (2) 4930 7400
Hours: [Wed-Sun] 11am~4pm [Fri-Sat] 6:30pm~10pm
Price: [lunch] 30~50 AUD/person [dinner] 55~70 AUD/person
Visited on: 2012-04
We stumbled upon Leaves & Fishes by pure luck. Sitting in the car around noon time, taking a break from our Hunter Valley winery hopping yet completely clueless as to where to have lunch, one of us literally just pointed to one of the forks (which denotes restaurants) on the tourist map, and off we went. To our pleasant surprise, lunch turned out to be a most lovely experience.
I had an instant good feeling when I stepped into Leaves & Fishes. The design is airy, cozy, stylish, yet relaxed, and the best part is that there’s a patio overlooking a tranquil lake – what a perfect spot to sit out on a day like this.
And how was the food? Fresh, simple, wonderful! We started with a platter of ‘Port Stephen’s rock oysters’ nude with citrus (16 or 28 AUD), also available with chardonnay dressing, bacon and worcestershire.
500g bucket of medium king prawns, handcut chips, chilli and coriander aioli (42 AUD).
Five spiced squid, rocquette, parsley and avocado salad, with tomato and wattle seed relish (21 AUD).
‘Real’ fish and chips, sea salt, sweet malt vinegar (32 AUD).
Crispy skinned duck, steamed asparagus, confit of potato and ginger butter (34 AUD).
I would recommend all of the above, perhaps except the duck, which seemed lackluster in comparison to the seafood dishes. As I tend to plan many of my meals when I travel, this kind of serendipitous “stumble-upons” is especially rare and thus very memorable. If you are coming to Hunter Valley, be sure you come to Leaves & Fishes for lunch – it’s too lovely to miss.