Just though I would post a note about a better than expected experience at Le Bistro Elephant - a 14 table small plates bistro between Ben & Jerry's and Khana Peena on Oxford in Downtown Berkeley.
The restaurant is actually strcuturally open to Khana Peena, so when you walk in - it smells like an Indian restaurant. It is simply furnished, except an enormous wall hanging of the Hindu god Ganesh (depicted with an elephant head - thus the name I assume) that I would assume is a carryover from when Khana Peena was in the space.
My better half and I had the buttermilk battered onion rings with cotija chese, lamb sliders, duck tacos, and day boat scallops. We also had a 22 oz Racer 5 IPA and a glass of California pinot noir for $58 including tax and tip. Not bad at all.
All the food was very good. The 12-14 onion rings (thick cut) were crunchy, dusted with melted cotija cheese, and accompanied with a ketchup doctored with dried powdered chilis. The lamb sliders were 3 fresh tasting mini lamb burgers (2 inch diameter), simply seasoned and on soft mini buns with lettuce tomato and cheese on the side to add as desired. The duct tacos were 3 corn tortilla will generous soft strands of duck meat and a good guacamole. The 3 day boat scallops were bearly seared, but properly cooked (not overdone), on a bed of tiny fingerling potatoes, bacon and smoked tomatoes. Turned out to be more food than the two of us were expecting.
None of these dishes were the best versions that I have ever had, but all were good to very good and certainly a good value. I hope they survive as they were a perfect pre-theater option for us.
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