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Mountain View, CA

French cuisine at Mountain View's Chez TJ restaurant

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Anita Durairaj
Anita Durairaj
Pouring WinePhoto by Louis Hansel on Unsplash

What do you get when you cross a Victorian home, Michelin star rating, and contemporary French cuisine? You get Chez TJ which is located at 938 Villa Street in Mountain View.

The restaurant is certainly worthy of fine dining with its antique ambiance and sharply dressed servers.

Mountain View and other Bay Area residents are not afraid to claim that it is truly one of the best in the area. Here is why Chez TJ should be on your bucket list of restaurants for dining if you live in the Bay Area.

The Victorian Home

The setting for Chez TJ is a historic Victorian home in Mountain View. The home was built in 1894 and it was first owned by Julius and Fanny Weilheimer. Ownership of the home passed in the early 1980s to George Aviet and Thomas J. McCombie who had dreams of setting up a restaurant. The first dinner was served in 1982 and it became what it is today. George Aviet is the current proprietor while Thomas McCombie passed away some years ago.

Along with the home, there is a Chez TJ garden. The garden is a source for some of the ingredients found on the menu. The garden contains herbs, citrus trees, and seasonal fruits and vegetables. What is unique here is that the garden is a community garden.

The Michelin Star

The restaurant has obtained one Michelin star since 2007. They have also won the Wine Spectator Best of Award of Excellence since 2016. The restaurant is ranked in the Bay Area's best 50 restaurants and among the top 59 Michelin-starred restaurants by the Mercury News.

According to the Mercury News,

For 37 years, George Aviet's Michelin-starred restaurant, housed in a charming 1890s Victorian, has offered a soothing respite from Silicon Valley's increasingly fast-paced world. It's a menu-free experience, "leaving you free to enjoy the wonder of your meal without any prior notion or expectations."

The current chef is Christopher Lemerand and he works with a team including a pastry chef, a sous chef, and wine director.

French Cuisine and Ambiance

The menu is in the form of a single Chef's Tasting Menu. It is a multi-course menu that involves the best ingredients. The offerings do change on a regular basis.

Examples of what may be offered in the menu include caviar, black cod, sourdough bread, tortellini, pogne with butter, Bordelaise over beef, a cheese course, different sauces, etc. Dessert may be creme brulee. You get a lot of small portions with different flavors.

Due to COVID-19, the restaurant had added seating areas in the courtyard to the side of the main entrance. The garden surrounds the courtyard and makes the setting even more dream-like and romantic.

As a Michelin star restaurant, the Chef's tasting menu is not cheap. The current listed price is $195 per person and the price may change.

The restaurant has an excellent rating of 4.5 stars out of 5 on Google Reviews. If you are in the Bay Area, save up some cash for fine dining at Chez TJ in Mountain View.

Sources: Chez TJ, The Mercury News

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