Leo

Bogotá, Santa Fe - La Macarena

  • Ambience 90%
  • Service 95%
  • Food 95%
  • Creativity 100%
  • Value 85%
  • Logistics 80%

Restaurant Details
Restaurant Details
Leo
Locale: Bogotá, Santa Fe - La Macarena
Address: Calle 27B #6-75
Telephone: +57 1 2867091
Restaurant Type: Upscale Casual
Cuisine: Colombian, Eclectic Gourmet
Service Type: Table Service
Price: $$$$
Menu items offered: Coffee, Desserts, Espresso, Seafood
Hours:
Lunch Mon-Sat: 12pm to 3:30pm, Dinner Mon-Sat: 7pm to 11pm,


Review Summary
Culinary magician, Leo Espinosa, elevates Amazonian dishes to gourmet status. A sexy, sophisticated ambiance and flawless service make Leo a “must-go” in Bogotá.

The full review for Leo

Review by: Ollie O Rating: 4.6 stars Review Date: 04/19/2017

Chef Leo Espinosa has become a bit of a local celebrity. But we’ve been to a few restaurants in Latin America that had local celebrities at the helm who, quite frankly, were barely average.

But Espinosa’s acclaim is well deserved. Her restaurant, Leo, centrally located near the National Museum, is a fabulous dining experience.

The entire staff is wearing black suits with skinny black neckties. Not stuffy. Just sophisticated. The décor and the ambiance have a classy Manhattan feel. Was I in New York or Bogotá?

But the menu is like nothing those Yankees have seen in Manhattan. It’s a gourmet offering using ingredients from the Amazonian rainforest.

At Leo, you have the choice of experiencing the 12-course tasting menu, or ordering, as I did, “a la carte” from a menu of about eight-each of appetizers, mains and desserts.

The meal is preceded with an amuse bouche, on this occasion, a small piece of biscuit-like bread made with taro root flour and two small servings of a mousse made with fruit from the peach-palm and another from a Colombian herb called guasca. Delicate and delicious.

I ordered the trout appetizer. A crudo serving of trout with a supporting cast of unique fruits and nuts from the Amazonian forests in a delicious salsa.

The main course, fish and conch, wrapped and steamed in a plantain leaf. Absolutely delicious.

The grand finale was a chocolate orb, dusted in some edible gold, filled with a sweet, rice horchata (a sweet milk-like concoction made from nuts, rice and other varying ingredients, popular throughout Mexico, Central America and the northern regions of South America).

Each course was perfectly executed and beautifully plated. It is not always easy to elevate peasant dishes to gourmet status, but Leo Espinosa had done it quite successfully. In fact, brilliantly.

The sophisticated ambiance, the flawless service and execution, left me wishing I had tried the tasting menu. This was truly a world-class dining experience. It is one of the more expensive restaurants in Bogota but, in my estimation, well worth the price tag.

Regrettably, the website doesn’t function in some browsers and there are no menu nor prices posted on the website. There is a system for online reservations on the restaurant’s website (it does not function using either a Firefox or Internet Explorer browser). Third-party reservations systems are not available for making reservations at Leo. Accordingly, Leo’s Logistics rating was lower than all other categories. Notwithstanding the poor logistics score, there is nothing in Bogotá that’s quite as interesting and unique as Leo. It is a “must-go” in Bogotá and is the only restaurant to-date that has garnered 5-stars on our rating for creativity.


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