Housed in a converted Victorian in downtown Mountain View, Chez TJ likes to kick it old school. Make your way down a path and past a pretty front porch to arrive at this delightful haven. Inside, four separate rooms welcome diners, each boasting their own design style. Romance is in the air, and details like vintage lamps, wallpaper, and elegant table settings pave the way for some very fine dining.
Under its current leader, Christopher Lemerand, this kitchen showcases contemporary cuisine by way of a single tasting. There are numerous courses, each unveiling refined, nuanced, and well-executed dishes. Start with the likes of pommes soufflé with Kaluga caviar; parsnip meringue set atop a chicory "sable"; followed by a twist on the classic "Reuben" starring crusty rye bread, aged Wagyu, kraut, and cheese. Chicken-fried quail stuffed with kale and served with an earthy red-eye gravy is comfort on a plate; Dungeness crab with a "pocket" of its own cloud-light mousse is quite simply irresistible.
Dip your spoon into desserts like preserved satsuma mandarin curd or chocolate cake with huckleberry ganache. Equally dreamy, wines here run the gamut with selections offered by the half-glass—just ask.