Friday, July 11, 2008

Elements Euro-Asian Fusion Restaurant

Tea-Smoked Duck

I hesitated a bit when tonight's dinner suggestion was for this Vietnamese-French place located deep in the San Jose suburbs (6944 Almaden Expressway, 408-927-8773). Not only am I not a big fan of fusion, but memories of a similar concept in the South Bay also came to mind. Well, I hoped that my pre-conceived notions would be proven wrong given all of the great things that I had read about this place online.

I wasn't quite sure what to make of it when we arrived, given its tinted windows and neon signs yet much more upscale decor inside. I couldn't quite figure out what they were trying to do with the menu either: while one would expect items like Vietnamese egg rolls on it, I was rather baffled by the presence of a cheeseburger as well as ravioli. I ordered the tea-smoked duck, which was much more tender and pleasantly smoked than I was expecting. But I am not a big fan of sweet things, so unfortunately the fruity sauce on top prevented this from being anything that I would crave again.

Still, nearly every table was filled tonight. These guys clearly put quite a bit of effort into plating the dishes, and I felt that they successfully made them look attractive without being tacky. I rather enjoyed the mildly tart taste of my fresh spinach and green apple salad too. But in the end, I usually don't go nuts for fusion, so I'm clearly not the right audience for this kind of place.

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