Los Altos, California is a Silicon Valley city that is undergoing change and redevelopment both in its residential areas and its downtown. Over the past few years, a number of fantastic new restaurant entrants have joined the scene including Honcho and Voyageur du Temps. We’re particularly jazzed about the newest kid on the block, Restaurant Asa.
Asa is a restaurant that celebrates the best of Italian and Spanish dishes. The restaurant is owned by Andrew Welch who also is the proprietor of The Basin in Saratoga. The head chef, Steven Vu, worked with Welch at The Basin before joining team Asa.
The menu features appetizers like a paella pequeña (made with shrimp and chorizo) as well as a paella de la tierra for veggie fans.
In addition to Asa, here’s a list of other neat little local spots we love across the Bay Area and Silicon Valley.
By the way, we adore the idea of featuring a hearty dish like paella in a lighter, more manageable starter form.
Before you dive into the tercer grado (or the main dishes on the menu), you may want to consider taste testing one of the beverages that Asa’s talented bartenders have whipped up. Asa features house cocktails like the Asa G&T which is made with Fords Gin, Carpano Bianco Vermouth, Fever Tree Tonic, edible flowers, grapefruit and juniper berries. Next time we’ll likely be making a beeline for the blackberry Bulliet or the fall’n leaf (made with San Francisco’s own Junipero Gin, rosemary syrup, Yellow Chartreuse, lime, St. Germain and egg white).
As gorgeous as our gin and tonic was, our tummies craved more than just edible flowers, so during our visit we also indulged in an “angry” bowl of Italian arrabiata pasta.
We also gave the exotic handmade mushroom pasta a whirl and that may have been the winner of the evening.
We found the service to be impeccable and on point at Asa. Our waiter, Kevin, answered all of our questions and was knowledgeable about each dish that was served. (He even had a cell phone pic handy that showcased that day’s fresh delivery from the King of Mushrooms.)
The ambiance at Asa is date night dreamy with soaring ceilings and feather flocked light fixtures.
The best seat in the house, in our humble opinion, is toward the back where you can peek into the kitchen.
Since Asa has only been open for a couple of months, walk up tables can be hard to come by. Your best bet is to book a reservation in advance on OpenTable. Reservations dining at 7:00pm or earlier have a two hour limit on their table. The bar area has open seating for about four people (and the full menu can be ordered at the bar should you choose to sit over by those lovely edible cocktail flowers).
With such tasty dinner dishes at Asa it may be tough to save room for dessert, but with options like Chef Vu’s homemade adult ice cream and Cali’s spiced rum cake, it’s worth taking a peek at the menu before you go.
Los Altos has plenty of stalwart favorites (like Los Altos Grill and The Posh Bagel), but Asa is in a class all its own. We left feeling as though our first outing at Asa was such a smashing success that we’ll surely be back for a follow up visit. Who knows, maybe next time we’ll see you there.
Address: 242 State Street
Los Altos, California 94022
Hours: Monday Through Thursday 5:00pm to Close, Friday and Saturday 4:30pm to Close
Phone: (650) 935-2372
Pricing (All in USD): Appetizers/Primer Grado $3.50 to $26.00, Salads and Soups/Segundo Grado $9.00 to $19.00, Main Dishes/Tercer Grado $18.00 to $59.00