The Leatherwood Restaurant will appeal to those who enjoy good food and wine in a classy restaurant environment. It is more suited to adults and those travelling with teenagers rather than those with active, small children.

Leatherwood Restaurant - Spirit of Tasmania
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Leatherwood Restaurant: Spirit of Tasmania

Leatherwood Restaurant: Spirit of Tasmania

by Roger Findlay

Once on board the Spirit of Tasmania it’s a good idea to go directly to the reception of Leatherwood Restaurant to make a booking as it can get busy to the point of being booked out. If you don’t want to eat at the first sitting, you will be offered alternative times and you will be called if you don’t show.

Spirit of Tasmania Ship - Bar and Lounge
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Spirit of Tasmania: Bar and Lounge

I have come to the conclusion that the smaller the serving, the more you pay. It’s all in the name of food art where the presentation of a miniscule food portion on a big white plate with a few dobs of unidentified substance and a small green leaf costs $35 minimum.

This does not apply in the Leatherwood Restaurant where the servings are medium sized, nicely presented and reasonably priced. That’s why I keep going back.

To tempt you, TT Line has this to say about the restaurant:

Sit back and enjoy the ultimate at sea dining experience at the Leatherwood Restaurant where every dish is a feast for your eyes and a treat for the tastebuds.

Before the Spirit of Tasmania gets out into the ocean, and possible choppy seas, you will be dining comfortably but always knowing that you’re on a moving ship.

On the Menu: Sailing to Tasmania

I was shown to a table for two next to four Melbourne men who were going over for trout fishing. They were having a great time with no expenses spared.

Leatherwood Restaurant - Dining Room
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Leatherwood Restaurant dining room

The wine list was a definite improvement from the time before with most of the wines being Tasmanian and they came at the price you would expect to pay in a restaurant. On this occasion I chose a bottle of 2008 Storm Bay Pinot Noir with a price tag of $45.

Leatherwood Restaurant - Tasmanian Wines
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Storm Bay: Tasmanian wine

For my entree the seafood tasting plate suited nicely. It consisted of Petuna gravlax, Top Fish octopus, Bass Strait scallops, hot smoked salmon and Turkish bread. All of this came nicely presented by a young waiter who had all the skills.

Leatherwood Restaurant - Seafood
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Seafood tasting plate: Tasmanian dining

The wine had been preceded by a few Cascade stouts in the bar and was taking effect. By the time my main course arrived, I was sailing!

Greenhams aged tenderloin of beef was placed before me. It was served with dauphinoise potato and pink peppercorn jus and looked a picture on the plate. It tasted remarkably good and went well with the wine.

Leatherwood Restaurant - Tasmanian Beef
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Main course: aged tenderloin of beef

With all of the main courses, there is an optional side plate of steamed market vegetables or fresh garden salad but if you’re really hungry I would suggest you ask for the fantastic, unlisted, potato wedges.

By now I was full and declined the tempting desserts and cheeses.

After my meal I like to sit for a while sipping on the last of my wine. By 9.30 pm, most patrons had left for their cabins leaving myself and a few others. I could sense that the front of house were keen to see the back of us so that they could complete the clear-up and retreat to their cabins for a few hours of sleep. This was the only criticism I have of the Leatherwood Restaurant.

Leatherwood Restaurant

On my return trip, I chose the smoked duck salad followed by Petuna ocean trout and baked chocolate tart with a bottle of Holm Oak Arneis which I shared with an interesting lone traveller.

Leatherwood Restaurant - Menu
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Leatherwood Restaurant menu

TT Line has got it right at last. Favourable pricing, excellent menu, plenty of choice, Tasmanian produce and matching Tasmanian wines. Well done!

Roger Findlay spends all his holidays in Tasmania, then writes about the experience for Think Tasmania. If you’d like Roger to visit you in the name of research (so we can publish information about your business), please contact us.

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