Showing posts with label downtown san jose wine. Show all posts
Showing posts with label downtown san jose wine. Show all posts

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). 


Monday, August 17, 2015

Coterie Cellars Winery Coming to the Downtown San Jose Area

Coterie is a small winery that produces distinctive wines from a variety of California vineyards. They make every wine from berry to bottle by hand and it looks like they specialize on Pinot Noirs with some Syrahs, Roussannes and Viogniers complimenting their portfolio. You can find their wines at The Ritz-Carlton, The Fairmont, Vintage Wine Merchants, and some of the best restaurants in Silicon Valley.

Currently they are located in Willow Glen and are renovating a vacant building at 885 West Julian Street to become their new permanent home. The location is about a block away from the new Whole Foods on The Alameda and a few blocks from the SAP Center. Coterie will be open for tastings every week from Thursday through Sunday.

Coterie will also host one-hour tasting classes that cover the wine-making process, aromas, and flavors. Each class includes samples of several wines paired with cheeses. To register for an upcoming class, click here.

While Coterie is not the first tasting room in the area (try Sherman Cellars at 40 Post), it is the first full-blown winery that I have ever heard about in the area. You will be able to see exactly how Coterie makes their wines and do tastings directly from the barrel. This is yet another neat attraction to look forward to in Downtown San Jose Greater Area. Coterie opens up shop in the fall and again will be located at 885 West Julian.

For more information on Coterie Cellars, head over to their website. A big thanks to Jake Smith for sending this in!

UPDATE: Coterie Cellars is technically not in Downtown San Jose, but Shasta/Hanchett Park (The Alameda). Thanks to Alex Shoor for sending in the correction.

Friday, September 5, 2014

Scott's Seafood Rooftop Wine Pairing Dinner featuring Silver Oak and Twomey Winery (Sep 18th)

Has anyone been to Scott's Seafood lately? This is the second highest eatery Downtown (second only to the Capital Club) since it is situated one top of a six story parking structure. Last year they commandeered a few neighboring parking spots and built an awesome patio up there with a fantastic view of Downtown and the greater Silicon Valley area.

On September 18th, Scott's is hosting a rooftop wine pairing dinner with Silver Oak and Twomey winery. The menu consists of four courses and five wine pairings, all while soaking in the view. For more information, keep scrolling down or click here to get your tickets.

San Jose, CA - Scott’s Seafood San Jose is proud to present a rooftop wine pairing dinner featuring Silver Oak and Twomey winery on September 18th, 2014 at 6pm on Scott’s Seafood rooftop patio. Scott’s Seafood is located on the sixth floor of the Civic Center Plaza at 185 Park Ave in Downtown San Jose. Cost for this dinner will be $80 dollars per person.

Chef Alfonso Tomayo has created a very special menu for this four-course beer dinner that will compliment Silver Oak and Twomey award winning wines. Guest will also be able to learn more about Silver Oak and Twomey from staff of the winery. Scott’s Seafood San Jose has selected five different wines to pair with this special menu. This menu will include the following courses:

  • First Course: Artisan cheeses, Fruit and Smoked Salmon. Paired with Twomey Sauvignon Blanc
  • Second Course: Roasted Beet Salad. Paired with Twomey Pinot Noir.
  • Third Course Filet Mignon and Ahi Tuna. Paired with Silver Oak Alexander Valley and Napa Valley Cabernets.
  • Fourth Course: Poached Pear. Paired with Twomey Merlot.

Scott’s Seafood San Jose is a Bay Area tradition in Downtown San Jose since 1986. Scott’s Seafood features American regional cuisine, the freshest seafood, pasta, chicken dishes, and USDA prime aged steaks.

Tickets are available through the following link This dinner is due to sell out and space is limited. For more information please call 408-971-1700.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Sherman Cellars Wine Tasting Coming Downtown!

I was reading A Perfect Finish's newsletter--a damn good wine bar on 1st, btw--and stumbled on this bit of news that somehow fell through the cracks of everything else I read about downtown. As of Aug 3rd, we will officially have a wine tasting room in Downtown San Jose! An added bonus is that it will be right around the corner from one of the few wine bars in San Jose (and the only one I know of that is open until 2am on Fri and Sat in Silicon Valley).


Wine Tasting Comes to downtown San Jose!Sherman Cellars
Sherman Cellars, 40 Post Street (just down from A Perfect Finish) will celebrate the Grand Opening of their Winery Tasting Room, Tuesday August 3, at 12:00 noon.  Join us, our city Councilman, Sam Liccardo and other dignitaries for the newest tasting room in Santa Clara Valley

Creekview VineyardsSherman Cellars will feature the wines ofCreekview Vineyards of San Martin.  The winemakers, Teri and Greg Peterson make an incredible array of whites and reds from Santa Clara Valley fruit, including their own estate vineyard.  From Santa Clara Valley Chardonnay to their big Melody Estate bordeaux style red their wines always please. 

After August 3, Sherman Cellars will be open for tasting: Wednesday through Sunday, 11am to 5pm.  
288-WINE (9463)