This review was made independently for the Gourmet Traveller Restaurant Guide. The guide’s reviewers visit unannounced and pay their way.
Pt Leo Estate is the latest Mornington Peninsula blockbuster, a $50 million sculpture park and winery with massive sea views. Phil Wood is in charge of food, both at the winery’s bistro and the flagship restaurant, Laura. Named for the Jaume Plensa sculpture, Laura is a finely crafted diner, from its well-honed floor crew and elegant Cutipol cutlery to Wood’s four to six courses of intelligent, regionally focused dishes. A local Dutch cream potato is joined by miso cream and caviar. Cold-smoked Flinders mussels shelter with dried tomatoes and seaweed butter under a tapioca crisp. Surprise is Wood’s forté – a curry emulsion hidden beneath mushrooms and abalone, or cumin ice-cream emerging from lemon cream and figs on a ripple of meringue. The wine list mixes a taste of the estate with winemakers from across the globe. A remarkable debut.