My family and I had a food-and-sports-filled Sunday. Before going to the Red Sox game yesterday, we met for brunch at The Elephant Walk in Boston. I’ve been to The Elephant Walk in Cambridge before and really enjoyed it so I was looking forward to returning.
The Elephant Walk is a unique restaurant in that it offers both Cambodian and French cuisine. A comfortable environment painted in warm colors, the restaurant offers many options for those who are vegetarian and vegan (there are plenty of meat dishes too) as well as separate gluten-free menu. As I’ve mentioned before, my dad has Celiac disease so it’s always a treat (for him and us) to find a place that understands and offers menu items for those who cannot consume gluten.
Last time I visited The Elephant Walk for dinner was during March’s Boston Restaurant Week. Restaurant Week is actually a two-week period when many area restaurants offer three course lunches for $20.09 and three course dinners for $30.09 (The Elephant Walk offered four courses for $33.09). I remember having a delicious meal there and was especially impressed by the Rouleaux, which were Cambodian spring rolls “filled with ground pork, crushed peanut, beanthread noodles, carrot and onion; served with fresh greens and herbs for wrapping and tuk trey on the side for dipping” and the Khar Saiko Kroeung with Shanghai Noodles which was flavorful and tender “braised boneless short ribs with Shanghai noodles sautéed with baby bok choy, beansprouts and scallions.” Delicious!
Enough reminiscing, it’s time to move onto yesterday’s brunch. The Elephant Walk offers a fairly extensive brunch menu on Sundays. You can order items a la carte or take part in the three course, prix-fixe offering for $19.95. This includes a starter, soup or salad, and an entrée as well as orange juice, coffee or a mimosa.
My mom started with the Rouleaux and I chose a fresh fruit platter (we shared both). The rouleaux was as fresh and tasty as I remembered. The fruit plate was excellent as well and included juicy pineapple, kiwi, apples, and strawberries. My brother enjoyed a croissant and my dad chose was pleased with the Nataing, which looked like chili. The nataing (from the gluten-free menu) consisted of “ground pork simmered in coconut milk with sliced garlic, crushed peanuts and chili pods; served with crispy jasmine rice for dipping.”
Soup came next and unfortunately we were less pleased. While the quantities were large, we weren’t crazy about the flavor of our soups. Everyone but me chose the S’ngao Mouan, a “Cambodian chicken soup with chicken breast, lemongrass, lime juice, fish sauce, Asian basil & scallion.” The soup included a good amount of chicken but my family members described the broth as tasting like lemon juice. I chose the Somlah Machou, “a tangy soup with tiger shrimp and plum tomatoes; garnished with fried garlic and “French” mint.” While I was pleased with the three large shrimp and two large slices of tomato in the soup, the broth was too tangy for me. It seemed similar to lemon juice to me too. Oh well, I guess the soups weren’t our thing.
Luckily, our entrees were very good. My mom had the French Toast, or, Pain Perdu au Sirop d’Erable au Cidre, which was small pieces of bread served with “a cinnamon cider maple syrup from Wood’s Cider Mill in Vermont and garnished with a sautéed pear.” Both my father and brother chose the Omelette Gourmande with Au Jambon et Fromage (ham and Gruyere cheese). It was filled with a hearty amount of filling and served with greens and a piece of bacon.
I chose to go the lunch route with the Mee Siem au Poulet. This was a rice noodle dish sautéed with “shredded chicken breast, tofu, garlic, salted soy beans, pickled shallot, Chinese chive, bean sprouts and red bell pepper; with shredded omelet & lime wedge.” I enjoyed this meal because it was different and was pretty tasty and filling. However, I’m not sure if I would order it again (because the Saiko Kroeung with Shanghai Noodles is my overall favorite).
While we were pretty stuffed, three of us decided to share a dessert, a crepe dish. Crepes are on the brunch menu as entrees and desserts (I love items that double as dessert!). The Crêpes Glacées were excellent and perfect to share. It consisted of two sweet crêpes rolled up and filled with a thick and smooth vanilla ice cream and topped with warm chocolate coulis. Definitely recommended!
With our stomachs full and the sun shining, we walked over to the Red Sox game. It was a great summer day, it’s just too bad the Sox lost!