Saturday, May 25, 2024

3Below Open House

Next weekend Downtown San Jose's last remaining movie theater is having an open house. In addition to playing movies, a lot of people don't realize that 3Below also hosts dozens of live events and educational programs. 

The action-packed event will highlight 3Below's importance to the San Jose art scene. Next Saturday and Sunday they will feature free movies and live entertainment, complimentary food, interactive programming, theater acts, and guest speakers. Even parking is validated. To see the full schedule and get your free movie tickets, head over here.

The open house will go from 11am to 9pm on June 1st and 2nd.



Friday, May 24, 2024

SJC is finally getting nonstop service to Washington DC

When it rains it pours. Earlier this week Frontier announced they are coming back to San Jose with five nonstop routes. Now, it looks like Spirit Airlines is launching one of San Jose's most requested routes of all time.

San Jose is one of the few big cities without a direct connection to DC. Given how important AI, semiconductors, and technology in general are to the United States--this makes no sense. Fortunately, Spirit Airlines is working on a nonstop flight to Ronald Regan Washington National Airport (DCA).

If it goes through, it will be the only low-fare airline option between Silicon Valley and Washington DC. The route is currently pending approval from the U.S. Department of Transportation.

I fly quite a bit but have yet to experience Spirit Airlines. That will be changing very soon. I knew they were categorized as an "ultra-low-cost" airline that slots below Southwest, but I didn't realize just how inexpensive they could be. You can book a business-class-sized seat to Vegas from SJC for less than the Southwest fare on several dates. If you are travelling light, the cheapest option can be half the cost of Southwest--which I already thought was pretty reasonable.

Source: SVBJ



Thursday, May 23, 2024

San Jose installing speeding cameras in late 2025

San Joseans with a lead foot will have to pay extra attention towards the end of next year. San Jose is placing 33 speed cameras in high-collision rate areas, which will automatically mail tickets to speeding drivers.

Traffic deaths doubled in San Jose from 29 in 2012 to 65 in 2022. The primary goal of these cameras is not revenue, but safety. All revenue from citations is required to be used for traffic calming measures.

The estimated cost of the equipment is $7 million, with an additional $3.6 million for data collection, public engagement, and racial equity analysis. That last item is specifically to avoid having these cameras only target specific ethnic communities or low-income neighborhoods.

Potential locations will be provided to the San Jose City Council this fall and the system is expected to go live by the end of 2025. 

Source: San Jose Inside



Wednesday, May 22, 2024

SJC regains an airline and five more nonstop routes

San Jose Mineta International Airport had some pretty big news yesterday. Frontier Airlines is returning to San Jose! It's always exciting to get a new airline, or in this case regain one. Frontier previously flew to San Jose in 2018 and 2019.

Frontier will add five daily nonstop routes this summer in two parts. Service to Denver and San Diego begin on July 22nd. Service to Las Vegas, Los Angeles (LAX), and Phoenix begin on August 13th. It also looks like they have a code-sharing agreement with Volaris for flights to Guadalajara, Mexico.

I'm happy with any addition of flights to San Jose, but all five of these routes already exist at SJC. Actually, all of them have not one but at least 2-4 other airlines flying those routes. Competition does means lower prices and more departure/arrival time options. Also, Frontier is an ultra-low cost carrier like Spirit Airlines, so their prices are already low to begin with. They even have some flights as low as $19 to promote the launch of the new San Jose service.

If they are successful with their initial offering, hopefully they will bestow some new nonstop routes as well.



Tuesday, May 21, 2024

Six-story office building to be replaced with townhomes

Over 100 homes could replace an office building in North San Jose, but there is a twist. The proposed project at 2107 North First St. would include 105 townhomes right next to the headquarters of PayPal and several other tech companies in the golden triangle of North San Jose. It has easy access to VTA Light Rail and in general is in a prime location.

Ready for the twist? In order to make room for those townhomes, a perfectly good 6-story office building would be torn down. While I understand the need to convert more office space to housing in order to balance supply and demand of each real estate use, this seems like a step backwards. Silicon Valley townhomes are typically three stories and in some rare cases four stories. 

If they are tearing down a whole office building, why not go with high-density housing? This site could easily support high-rises taller than Downtown San Jose. Townhomes do not seem like the best use for this land.

Source: The Mercury News



Monday, May 20, 2024

Affordable housing headed for Cambrian Park

Adobe Communities is proposing a 100% affordable housing project across from Cambrian Park Plaza. The six-story building at 1999 Camden Avenue would feature 90 residential units: nine studios, 30 one bedroom units, 26 two-bedrooms, and 25 with three bedrooms. It would also include a courtyard, 1,600 SQFT community room, study rooms, and a laundry facility.

Cambrian Park Plaza is also destined to add more housing with a major mixed-use development on the horizon. This would be a larger-scale project with 58,000 SQFT of retail, 305 apartment units, townhomes, a few rare single family homes, an assisted living facility, a hotel, and several new parks.

Source: SVBJ



Sunday, May 19, 2024

Industry Standard aka Indy performing in San Jose on June 3rd

Prepare for a night of electrifying Afrobeats, Pop, and R&B music as Industry Standard, better known as Indy, takes the stage at The Coterie Den in Japantown. This highly anticipated event offers fans an opportunity to experience Indy's unique blend of infectious rhythms and soulful melodies in an intimate setting.

Indy has quickly risen to prominence in the Afrobeats genre, known for his captivating stage presence and a unique sound that blends elements of Pop and R&B. His performance in San Jose is set to showcase his biggest hits as well as new, unreleased tracks that are sure to become fan favorites.

The Coterie Den at 169 Jackson St. in San Jose will provide the perfect backdrop for Indy's performance. With its exceptional acoustics and intimate setting, The Coterie Den remains a favorite destination for music lovers in San Jose. Doors open for the show at 7pm on June 3rd.


About Indy:

Indy, also known as Industry Standard, is an Atlanta-based Afrobeats artist renowned for his innovative sound and dynamic performances. With a growing international fanbase, Indy continues to push the boundaries of Afrobeats, blending elements of Pop and R&B to create a truly unique musical experience.

About The Coterie Den:

The Coterie Den is a premier live music venue in San Jose, known for its exceptional acoustics and intimate setting. It has hosted a variety of acclaimed artists and remains a favorite destination for music lovers.

Saturday, May 18, 2024

Culture night market tonight at Discovery Meadow

Head over to Discovery Meadow today anytime from 4pm-10pm for live music, activities for the kids (bouncy houses, connect four, jenga), and all sorts of local vendors. There are two stages, food trucks, a beer garden, Coterie Den vintage thrift market and more.

The event is free and open to all ages and pets. For more info click here.


Friday, May 17, 2024

Free Comic Con at the Santa Clara Central Park Library

What more appropriate place is there to host a ComicCon than a library? Well, perhaps a place that actually publishes comics. In any case, the Central Park Library in Santa Cara is hosting a free ComicCon on Saturday, October 12th.

The event will bring together local artists, comic book shops, cosplayers, and games for a full day of celebration. There will be panels, signings, anime screenings, vendors, crafts, and tons of special guests. They are still building out the full agenda, but some of their guests and vendors are already listed here.

It's rare to have access to events like this for free. If you're interested you can RSVP here.

Thursday, May 16, 2024

Santa Clara County population has stabilized

While real estate prices are falling all around the country, you have to wonder why prices are still super high in the heart of Silicon Valley if the population is dropping. The answer is simple, the population is no longer dropping. The exodus appears to be over with Santa Clara County gaining a small number of people overall and San Jose having a drop of only 1,281 people... a fraction of what happened during the pandemic.

Next year, we could be headed back to growth with substantial new housing projects opening up and plenty of capacity for large businesses to come to San Jose.

Source: usdmedia from Skyscraper City, State of California Department of Finance



Wednesday, May 15, 2024

Downtown San Jose is getting a new high school

An 87-year-old private school called Hillbrook that is based in Los Gatos is expanding to Downtown San Jose. The school is leasing two historic buildings: the Moir Building at 227 N. First Street and the San Jose Armory at 240 N. Second Street. These buildings will be leased for at least 25 years, which will breathe some new life to the area around St. James Park.

The school was specifically seeking a Downtown San Jose location so that they can partner with local nonprofits, businesses, and SJSU.  Social impact and entrepreneurship are two of the tenants the high school wants to focus on. 

It will take two years to get the buildings ready and total enrollment for the school is expected to reach 300 students. If you have kids in grade school and this is sounding interesting so far... start saving. Today's tuition for Hillbrook goes all the way up to $40,700 per year.

Tuesday, May 14, 2024

Free concerts are returning to St. James Park on May 26th

Every Sunday from May 26th to Jun 16th, you can enjoy a free concert at St. James Park in Downtown San Jose from 3:30pm - 7pm. Along with the live music there will be food trucks and a beer & wine garden. The concerts are open to people of all ages and you can read all about them in the press release below.


FREE Concerts return to St. James Park – Spring 2024

Friends of Levitt Pavilion San Jose: “Building Community through Music”.

Sundays this Spring (May 26, June 2, 9, 16) bring a picnic, drop a blanket on the lawn and enjoy free, all ages, high quality concerts from 3:30pm – 7pm in historic St. James Park. There will be a Beer & Wine Garden, and delicious local food trucks will be on hand to ensure a stress free Sunday afternoon  in the park.

Kicking off the 4 concert series on May 26th, in celebration of Worldwide Recognition of Africa Day, Amayo will bring the Afro beats to the lawn. Former Frontman of Antibalas for 23 years, Amayo was credited for bringing Afrobeat to a global audience, leading it to become a genre of itself. He composed the GRAMMY nominated “Fu Chronicles” album for “Best Global Music Album of the Year” 2020. It was the launchpad for Amayo’s solo career - where Kung Fu meets Afrobeat. This concert will feature African diaspora music, dancing, crafts & more!

June 2nd, Friends of Levitt Pavilion San jose will honor and recognize the passing of Board Member, Rick Holden as Noah & The Arkiteks takes the stage in a celebration of Blues.

On June 9th, the Spring 2024 Levitt Pavilion San Jose concert series will feature the return of Lyrics Born. Lyrics Born relocated to the United States from his birthplace of Toyko, Japan around the time Hip Hop was exploding on the East Coast. From the moment he heard Sugar Hill Gang’s 1980 classic “Rapper’s Delight,”  the Bay Area Hip Hop luminary knew he’d found his calling. 

Closing out the Spring concert series on June 16th (the best place to celebrate Father’s Day!) The Jack Moves will bring the Souldies sound to the Levitt lawn.

About the Levitt San Jose Spring Concert Series: 

Formed in 2016, Friends of Levitt Pavilion San Jose is a nonprofit with a mission to build community through free, all-ages, high-quality live music shows and performances on a permanent stage in historic St. James Park.

The Levitt San Jose Spring Concert Series will feature top local and national artists, giving a sneak peek of what’s to come when Levitt Pavilion San Jose joins the community of permanent Levitt venues across the country.

Friends of Levitt San Jose social links: FacebookInstagram and Twitter,

The Levitt Pavilion San Jose Music Series is supported in part by the Mortimer & Mimi Levitt Foundation, which partners with towns and cities across America to activate underused public spaces through the power of free live music, creating welcoming, inclusive destinations. Presenting a broad array of music genres and cultural programming, Levitt venues and concert sites are community anchors where families, friends and neighbors of all ages and backgrounds come together. 

 

FYI - You may have heard about Levitt San Jose’s efforts  to break ground at St. James Park. Having dealt with a progress-halting lawsuit and appeal of the Court’s initial decision, Friends of Levitt Pavilion San Jose perseveres, and sets the tone for the future site of a Levitt Pavilion with this concert series. By recognizing the magic of live music to bring communities together and activate public spaces, Levitt San Jose strives to carve out a new era for Downtown San Jose’s most historic park.

Monday, May 13, 2024

Stunning street mural headed to San Pedro Square

There were a few silver linings that emerged from the pandemic. The closing of San Pedro Street between Santa Clara and St. John was a big one for me--and it recently became permanent.

Now that the street has been reclaimed for pedestrians, diners, and shoppers on one of the most popular Downtown districts--the gray asphalt simply won't do. Local groups are going to transform it into a colorful mural that reflects the vibrancy and diversity of San Jose this Memorial Day weekend. In order to bring this block-length mural to life, hundreds of San Joseans will participate in painting the mural.

The San Jose Downtown Association, Adobe, and Local Color all partnered together to organize this epic project which will result in what I think will be the largest and longest mural in Northern California and one of the largest in the United States at over 12,000 SQFT. It will be an attraction in and of itself and one more reason to dine outside this summer at San Pedro Square.

Thinking a few steps ahead, it would be great to expand the amount of retail along the first floor of the San Pedro Square parking garage. I think the MOMENT shops in the garage have been a great addition to the area and now that the street will look this interesting, we have to get more activity opposite of our Downtown restaurant row.

Source: SVBJ



Sunday, May 12, 2024

The first Block Party of 2024 is at the Historic District, May 16th

Downtown San Jose advocates are hosting a series of six different block parties in Downtown San Jose, and the first kicks off this week in the Historic District at the heart of the downtown area. I didn't realize just how many businesses were located in this region until I saw the list below. Over 60 businesses are participating in the event!

The block party is expected to bring thousands of people and there will likely be live music and other special activities. It goes down on Thursday, May 16th from 5-9pm starting in Fountain Alley.

Upcoming block parties will take us to SoFA, San Pedro, Paseo De San Antonio, Little Italy, and City Hall. Every location has had new businesses arrive over the past year.



Saturday, May 11, 2024

Raging Waters San Jose has a new name

After quite a bit of drama, Raging Waters will return this summer with a new operator. However, the name will be new. The waterpark will now be called Calibunga San Jose

California Dreamin' will put in millions of dollars in capital improvements and plans to have the park open by Memorial Day weekend. It also happens to be the same company that is redeveloping the former Raging Waters park in Sacramento, which it also renamed to Calibunga.

Source: ABC7 News







Friday, May 10, 2024

372 apartments move forward at a former San Jose DMV site

A former DMV in central San Jose near History Park and the intersection of Senter and Tully is going to be transformed into a 372-unit apartment complex called "The Place." The apartments would be split across three seven-story buildings with a more interesting design then you would expect from your typical midrise.

The apartments themselves would range from studios to two-bedroom units with two bathrooms. 112 of the apartments will be studios, 200 are one-bedroom, and 60 are two-bedroom units.

The one-story office building that housed the DMV would be demolished to make way from this project. The neighborhood is mostly office and industrial with a Costco across the street. The best escape-games in San Jose are a couple blocks away at OMESCAPE and you also have Happy Hollow Park and Zoo, History Park, the Japanese Friendship Gardens, Kelly Park, Sharks Ice, and the San Jose Giants less than a mile away. It's actually a pretty decent area to start building dense housing.

The next step is a series of city reviews this month.

Thursday, May 9, 2024

San Jose connection improvements to the Central Coast

Decades in the making, rail options are expanding between Monterrey County to San Jose. This includes two new stations in Monterrey County. $1M has been secured in the last bipartisan rail bill. That is million with a M and not a B like many of the other projects that have been discussed here. Seems like low-hanging fruit to expand service.

The two new stations will be in Pajaro close to Watsonville and another in downtown King City. Both will have the potential of taking large numbers of cars off of 101 during peak commute times being used by supercommuters driving an hour or more.

It's nice to some new rail projects moving forward quickly. The Pajaro station will begin construction in early 2027 while King City station will start in 2026.

Source: KSBW8



Wednesday, May 8, 2024

Mother's Day Salsa Brunch at the Signia San Jose

In the past, the Fairmont San Jose has thrown some pretty epic Mother's Day events in their spacious ballrooms. I'm happy to see that the Signia by Hilton is keeping that traditional alive. 

For a more unique Mother's Day, they are doing a Salsa Brunch. In addition to the feast which is themed around Latin cuisine, there will be a DJ spinning Salsa, Cumbia, and other Latin genres.

The food options include:
  • Spanish Tapas Board: A delectable assortment including Spanish chorizo, Serrano ham, Manchego cheese, olives, roasted pimientos, and much more, perfect for sharing.
  • Ceviche and Chips: Dive into a refreshing assortment of seasonal ceviche complemented by tortilla chips, guacamole, and tangy lime.
  • Chilled Seafood Bar: Savor lemongrass poached jumbo shrimp, crab claws, and oysters, accompanied by our tequila-lime cocktail sauce or mignonette.
  • Assorted Sushi & Sashimi: A selection of maki rolls and sashimi featuring big eye tuna, salmon, and hamachi, served with all the traditional accompaniments.
  • Desayuno: Customize your omelets at our omelet station, and don't miss the potato and egg Spanish torta or the decadent tres leche French toast pudding.
  • Street Taco Bar: Assemble your dream taco with a variety of fillings including chicken tinga, pork carnitas, and cauliflower barbacoa.
  • Cantina Soup: Choose between the comforting elote soup and chicken tortilla soup for a warm delight.
  • Main and Sides: Indulge in short rib enchiladas, herb-roasted chicken breast, seafood paella, and more, alongside a selection of hearty sides.
  • Churrasco Carving Station: Feast on prime cuts of meat including prime top sirloin, double bone-in pork chop, and more, perfectly grilled and ready to enjoy.
  • Sweet Seekers: End on a high note with cafĂ© con leche flan, churros, tres leches, and a variety of other desserts, including the irresistible Republic Del Cacao Chocolate Fountain.
  • Kids Corner: A specially curated menu for our youngest guests featuring vegetable cruditĂ©, beef sliders, chicken tenders, mac and cheese, and a candyland filled with sweets.
I'm sold on the tres leches French toast pudding and churrasco carving station. It's pricey but does also include a glass of sparkling wine, and it's for the important mothers in your life!

For more info and to RSVP, click here.


Tuesday, May 7, 2024

Mother's Day at Santana Row

It's not too late to book Mother's Day lunch or brunch. Below are several easy options at Santana Row:

Left Bank: Nothing says "je t'aime" like a truly great meal, oui? Indulge the special mother figure in your life with a delightful and authentic French dining experience at Left Bank Brasserie.Treat her to a delightful array of dishes curated with her in mind, featuring both our beloved brunch classics and new spring-inspired brunch additions, available from 10 AM to 3 PM. For dinner, savor our exceptional Braised Lamb Shank alongside our regular dinner menu, served from 3 PM to 8 PM. All Left Bank locations will be open from 10 AM to 8 PM. Click here to see Mother's Day Specials.

LB Steak: This Mother's Day, honor Mom with an unforgettable dining experience at LB Steak! We'll be serving the below Brunch menu additions, as well as the regular Brunch menu, from 10 AM-2:30 PM. We'll also be featuring Dinner menu additions from 3 PM to 8 PM. Our regular Dinner menu will also be served all day, from 10 AM to 8 PM, along with our special Peach Bellini for Mom. Relax and enjoy the beauty of family as we attend to every detail. It's never too early to start planning for reservations! Book your table online or by calling us at 408-413-3939 today. Click here to see Mother's Day Specials.

Meso Modern Mediterranean: Join us at Meso this Mother's Day to treat your mother, grandmother, aunt, or any other special mother figure in your life to a delicious brunch out at the beautiful Santana Row! On Sunday, May 12th, we will be serving the below brunch menu additions from 10 am-2:30 pm in addition to our regular brunch menu. A reduced all-day menu will also be served from 10 am-4 pm, and our regular dinner menu will continue from 4pm-close, along with the below special dinner addition. Reserve today on our website or by giving us a call! We are excited to be offering extended hours on Mother's Day, and will be open from 10 am-9 pm. Click here to see Mother's Day Specials.

Hotel Valencia: Join us at Hotel Valencia for a delightful Mother's Day Brunch Buffet! Enjoy a spread of gourmet treats and celebrate in style. Mother's Day Brunch Tickets, Sun, May 12th, 2024 at 11AM. Click here to purchase tickets. 


Monday, May 6, 2024

Starting this week on a high note with Purple Lotus

A prime 2,100 SQFT corner space that was formerly Peet's Coffee at 66 West Santa Clara Street has reopened as Purple Lotus cannabis store. They just had their ribbon cutting last Friday..

I believe this is the first urban dispensary in San Jose. Most are tucked away in industrial areas, including the original Purple Lotus location at 752 Commercial Street. That dispensary is much larger and has a thriving business for both in-person and delivery. The family-owned business employs 139 people and is currently San Jose's largest dispensary.

The Downtown location will take advantage of relaxed hours that were voted in last November and will be open from 8am to 10pm. This may actually be a significant draw for Downtown (and perhaps help nearby restaurants). While I have personally never bought anything at a dispensary, I also wouldn't underestimate their potential impact. San Jose collected $16.6 million in taxes from dispensaries last fiscal year.

Sources: SVBJ, The Mercury News

George Avalos/Bay Area New Group


Sunday, May 5, 2024

Cinco de Mayo in San Jose

If you are not celebrating Cinco de Mayo, today would be a good one to steer clear of Downtown and East San Jose. There are a series of planned roadway closures and given the large numbers of people expected to attend the Cinco de Mayo parades, traffic will be gridlocked.

If you are attending, plan to come really early. The lowrider parade in East San Jose starts at 10am along King Road from Alum Rock to Story Road. Afterwards there will be a festival at Emma Prusch Farm Park at noon.

In Downtown San Jose the Cinco de Mayo Parade starts at 9am in front of the San Jose City Hall and goes to Plaza de Cesar Chavez. The festival there will run from 11am to 5pm and has live music, food, vendors, and lucha libre wrestling.

It will be a much larger event than previous years, especially last year. As an added twist, the SJPD will be participating in the parade itself. There is some irony there given San Jose's anti-lowrider laws (which were overturned), but it will definitely be a sight to see today.

Saturday, May 4, 2024

Taco Throwdown 2024

The Silicon Valley Taco Throwdown takes place today at Blanco Urban in San Pedro Square. It features tons of the hottest chefs, restaurants, and food trucks. $49 let's you sample 5 tacos. If you have an appetite $79 gets you an all-you-can-eat feast. For more info click here.


Friday, May 3, 2024

South FIRST FRIDAYS Art Walk - May 2024

South FIRST FRIDAYS is back with exhibits across multiple galleries in three different districts. Everything is open from at least 5-9pm. Participating venues include ANNO DOMINI, the Institute of Contemporary Art, KALEID Gallery, Works San Jose, the San Jose Museum of Quilts & Textiles, the SoFA Market, MACLA, Art Ark Gallery, MACHU PICCHU, San Jose Jazz, and Chopsticks Alley Gallery.

Worth noting this month is the screening of a short film, Pizza Monster, at MACLA at 7:30pm and 8:30pm. Also Sacred Heart Community Service at 550 S. First will have life-size sculptures by Ramon Franco Arambula.

It all goes down on Friday, May 3rd. As usual admission is free and all ages are welcome. Click here for a preview of featured art! Below is a map with all of the galleries to check out across all three different districts.


Thursday, May 2, 2024

Elyse: elevated French Vietnamese cuisine in the heart of Downtown San Jose

Before we talk about about the new Elyse, I have to spend a moment to honor the original. Elyse was the first French Vietnamese restaurant in Downtown San Jose and took residence in the former House of Siam space that old school San Joseans will remember well. The first time I went, I was just happy that a Downtown space that sat vacant for years was finally filled up with a new restaurant. However, I was completely blown away by the cuisine, cocktails, and how romantic the space was. Despite my mission to eat at every restaurant in Downtown San Jose (I'm at 258 so far) I returned several more times and would easily place it in my Top 10 for all Downtown San Jose restaurants.

This was in 2018. Fast forward to the pandemic. During the early 2020s the owner endured multiple hardships including including the passing of her mom, break-ins, property damage, looting, a divorce, and then some. It was an incredibly challenging time, and Elyse closed their doors for an extended period. 

Now, not only is Elyse back... but they have a new location that is bigger and better than ever. This key corner space once belonged to Nemea at the corner of San Fernando and 1st Street. Like House of Siam, it has also been vacant for years. There is a lot of pressure on Elyse to bring something special to this high-traffic part of Downtown--and they delivered.




The space is open and inviting. There is a bar area, main dining room, a cellar-style wine room, a private dining space, and outdoor seating. There are large works of art themed around both France and Vietnam. The lit Eiffel Tower was my favorite.

I was fortunate to sample eight of their dishes. For the appetizers we had caviar blinis, mushroom tartlette (crowd favorite), head-on grilled shrimp, fried Brussel sprouts, mussels, and garlic noodles. I would recommend any of these. The caviar was a nice surprise since I don't remember that on the original menu and I'm not aware of any other restaurant in Downtown San Jose that has that available. As decadent as that was, my favorite app was the mushroom tartlette followed by the giant shrimp skewers with Vietnamese seasonings.








After the appetizers we had two of the mains--a glazed seabass with sauted bok choy and cofit as well as a braised short rib bourguignon with bone-in braised Angus beef short rib and Belgian style fries.

Both were phenomenal. I'm normally a carnivore and prefer steak, but the pan seared glazed seabass was truly outstanding and would likely be my choice. If you're out on a date, it's the perfect opportunity to get two different dishes and share. 



Unfortunately I had to leave the media preview night early to get to our baby at home and did not have a chance to try the desserts. They had a black sesame panna cotta and a Belgian chocolate lava cake, both of which I would have loved to try. I'm planning to head back there this weekend to get those desserts and try more of their dishes. I'm especially looking forward to trying some items that lean more towards the Vietnamese side and a cocktail or two.

In summary, Elyse gets two huge thumbs up. Please give them a try and let us know what you think! Could this be San Jose's next Michelin-recommended restaurant? Petiscos needs some company, and this may be it.

Elyse is located at 96 South 1st Street and is open Tuesday through Saturday from 5pm to 9pm. Street parking is free after 6pm and pretty easy to get within a couple blocks of the restaurant. You can make reservations here as well as read more reviews (spoiler, they have a well-deserved 4.5/5 stars on Yelp). 

Wednesday, May 1, 2024

Elyse has a full-blown wine room

Finally, tomorrow I'll have the full write-up for Elyse. There is too much content for one post (not even talking about the fist fight outside during the mayor's interview). One quick item I'll break out for today is that Elyse isn't just a restaurant, they are also a wine merchant.

They have a beautiful room that feels like a wine cellar and can store thousands of bottles of wine. I know they dabbled in making their own products, so it will be interesting to see which bottles are available for purchase.

Since Zanatto's and The Market by Safeway closed, this part of Downtown San Jose has not had a great spot to buy wines. That all changes very soon. You can find Elyse at 96 S. First St. (former Nemea corner space).