Brothers Miki and Igor Dodevski have fond childhood memories of their mother Vera Dodevska and their baba (grandmother) baking on Sunday mornings. Miki’s favourite dishes were banica – a hand-rolled, layered leek and cheese pastry – and pindjur, a relish of roast peppers, eggplant and tomato topped with feta.
In March 2019, they opened Lé Léé, a restaurant inspired by those experiences – and they’ve brought their mother in to do the cooking too.
Inside, distressed, peeling white walls expose red brick underneath. Pressed metal sheeting encases the bar, and wooden furniture creates a homely feel. Bench seating is topped with decorative cushions, and handwoven tapestries and garlands of garlic hang from above.
To make the most of the menu, do as the Macedonians do. Start off with some meze (share plates) and rakia (a traditional fruit brandy) and sip it with the dishes to come. Each meal also begins with a complimentary cube of bread dipped in oil to get you started.
Dodevska – a chef of 45 years – is in the kitchen plating up traditional Macedonian dishes such as shopska salad with tomato, cucumber and onion covered with grated feta; clay pots filled with slow-cooked beef, chicken, pork and mushrooms; sarma (stuffed, pickled cabbage rolls); and vegetarian baked moussaka. Other meze include taratur (a strained yoghurt dip); potatoes with feta; and a sour cherry and walnut baklava for dessert. There are 18 different types of rakia, ranging from grape to plum, pear, apricot and quince.