Boston Restaurant Blog -- February, 2008
Monday, February 18, 2008
Valentine's Day can be hit-or-miss when it comes to restaurants, as some dining spots really pull out all the stops with special menus and super food, while others are loud, hectic, overpriced, and anything but romantic. Fortunately, our trip to the Elephant Walk in Cambridge for Valentine's Day was nowhere even close to being the latter. And while not everything was perfect there that night, our experience at this French-Cambodian restaurant was perhaps even better than we had expected.
We arrived at the Elephant Walk a few minutes later than our reservation was for, but were seated promptly in the back corner of one of the cozy basement rooms. they gave us the option of ordering off the regular menu or going with a fair and reasonable fixed price tasting menu. We did one of each option, and started out with a couple of appetizers. The wild mushroom soup with sherry and brown rice was wonderful, with a warm, exotic taste that was perfect for a cold winter night. The meaty pork spring rolls were just as good as the soup, though I gave a very slight nod to the soup. both of the entrees were terrific, though the center-cut sirloin was cooked rare instead of the requested medium, so it had to go back for a bit more cooking. The mee siem au poulet (chicken with egg, vegetables, and rice noodles) was perhaps the pick of the night, with fresh, healthy ingredients going perfectly with the hot spices mixed in. It was just a bit like Singapore noodles, though colored deep red from the hot spices rather than yellow from curry. We had very little room for dessert, but ended up trying the chocolate truffle cake (outstanding) and the creme caramel with pandan leaf (odd-tasting, but not bad, with flavors not unlike hazelnuts and red bean paste). Service overall was excellent, as our waitress was gregarious and funny, and seemed to be able to deal with the stress of handling so many tables that night.
I can see myself returning to the Elephant Walk again, and not just for a special occasion such as Valentine's Day. The food was outstanding at times and the prices weren't too bad for this type of place. There were several items on the menu that had my name written all over them, so perhaps I will be heading back there sooner rather than later. One can only hope...
If you want the address for the Elephant Walk, here it is: Elephant Walk, 2067 Massachusetts Ave, Cambridge, MA 02140. The phone number is (617) 492-6900.
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