Leading the way

LEADMAN smashes it with their evening degustation menus, but as I was saying goodbye to the concrete plants in East Perth mid-day, I thought I’d check out their lunch menu.

If ever there was a perfect example of why those noisy, dusty plants have had their day and should go as quickly as possible, it’s Leadman.

The sausage roll and chip lunchbar across the road has gone the way of the dinosaur, to be replaced by the hipness of an entire Melbourne laneway, crammed into one cosy venue.

This is no place for roaring concrete trucks and dusty overalls; the streets are filling with yummy mummies strolling past for a caffeine fix and young entrepreneurs picking up a delicious-looking toastie to take back to their start-ups in the cheap offices nearby.

The area’s been developing its mojo quite organically; industrial roots stops and pretentiousness and the growing sense of community is on display with the half-dozen couples enjoying the nearby pocket park on what’s just an ordinary Tuesday lunchtime.

Six months since taking a punt on this scene, Leadman’s team seem just as enthusiastic and welcoming as ever; to save me a five-minute walk to the servo to get the daily paper, they offer me a spare tablet PC – complete with a great news feed. Now that’s service well and truly beyond the call.

The lunch menu itself is short and to the point; there’s not a huge variety and it defies being categorised, but each dish is very enticing.

I settled on the turmeric chicken on a bed of wild rice, which was absolutely gorgeous and a perfect lunch size.

The chicken strips were juicy and tender, and the turmeric (which really does qualify as a super food because it staves off the brain fug of old age) gave it a warm, earthy taste without being overpowering.

I washed it down with one of the teas that came on recommendation and enjoyed the flowery undertones. And again another shout out to their service; after my meal the waiter offered a free top-up because there was some left in the infuser and it would otherwise go to waste.

Leadman is absolutely brilliant; book yourself in for one of their degustation menus – being a bit out of the way the overheads aren’t so high and the price very reasonable, and they do go out of their way to make them delicious and entertaining at the same time.

Or just drop in for lunch.

159 Claisebrook Rd, Perth

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