Review: Verge Restaurant a Perfect Blend of French, Vietnamese and Northern Californian Cuisines

Updated: Oct 17, 2019

Verge Restaurant located inside the Toll House Hotel is Silicon Valley's up and coming dining hot spot, which mixes French, Vietnamese and Northern Californian cuisines all expertly led and prepared by Executive Chef Albert Buu-Hoang Nguyen-Phuoc.

The entrance to Verge Restaurant located inside the Toll House Hotel in Los Gatos, California. (Photos by Digital Nomad Foodie)

Verge Restaurant - Los Gatos, California

One of our favorite places to grab a good meal (four times!) during the past few months has been Verge Restaurant located inside the Toll House Hotel in Los Gatos, California.

The Toll House Hotel courtyard is the perfect setting for a wedding. (Photo by Digital Nomad Foodie)

This charming 115 room-hotel captures both current day Los Gatos and offers a glimpse to it's historic past. It's also a great place to hold a corporate event or wedding.

The location is said to be on the "verge" of town, which makes sense because it's nestled at the base of the Santa Cruz Mountains and the city limits of Los Gatos.

The chic decor inside the lounge area of Verge Restaurant. (Photo by Digital Nomad Foodie)

It's located on the southern end of South Santa Cruz Avenue, just a few steps away from the Los Gatos Town Plaza Park.

About three years ago the restaurant was renamed from "Three Degrees" to it's current name. Everything from the decor to the food and drinks were reimagined.

An interior view of the lovely decor inside the restaurant. (Photo by Digital Nomad Foodie)

The menu covers a wide range of comfort food to crafted cocktails, which fuses French, Vietnamese and Northern California cuisines.

Today, this modern bistro is getting more and more popular not only from the global guests who stay at the hotel, but also to the locals.

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Just look at these scallops. These alone should make you want to book a table! (Photo by Digital Nomad Foodie)

How my wife and I discovered Verge

My wife and I first discovered Verge by searching the internet for new places to eat in San Jose while we had family visiting us. We stumbled upon an article by entitled, "The Hottest Restaurants in San Jose Right Now, May 2015".

After skimming through it, we thought Verge Restaurant sounded like a cool place to check out with our family and to celebrate my mom's birthday. We had a fantastic meal, the service is ALWAYS good and we've kept coming back with new people to share the wealth.

Heaven is defined as this pork and duck burger with the egg on top. (Photo by Digital Nomad Foodie)

It was after our third visit to Verge Restaurant, towards the end of 2017 that I started this blog: I knew from the beginning that I wanted to write about this place.

After reaching out to the friendly management team led by Robert Mullan, Christopher Simas and Tyler John, I was able to secure a reservation to not only enjoy the fine food and vibes again, but to meet the people behind the scenes.

Executive Chef Albert Nguyen-Phuoc, Restaurant Manager Robert Mullan, my wife Nancy and I. (Photos by Digital Nomad Foodie)

About Executive Chef Albert Buu-Hoang Nguyen-Phuoc

We got the rare opportunity to meet Executive Chef Albert Buu-Hoang Nguyen-Phuoc on a Saturday evening during one of Northern California's mild winters.

He comes from a royal bloodline that traces it's roots back to the Nguyen Dynasty in Vietnam.

After the Vietnam War ended, his family moved to Paris, France where he spent 10 years of his life. During this time, his family opened a restaurant there and this is how he learned how to cook.

A hot pot of creamy and cheesy Wild Mushroom Cobbler. (Photo by Digital Nomad Foodie)

He eventually attended Le Cordon Bleu, which is considered the benchmark of culinary and hospitality schools in the world. He graduated with honors as an "académie culinaire" student and then became an instructor at the famed school.

After his time in France, he moved to the Bay Area and has lived there for the better part of three decades.

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Have you ever had a plate of peeled brussels sprouts? (Photo by Digital Nomad Foodie)

Executive Chef Nguyen-Phuoc decided to join the Toll House Hotel as Executive Chef of Verge Restaurant to share his culinary wealth of knowledge (French, Vietnamese and Northern Californian cuisines) to share with all residents and guests of the San Francisco Bay Area.

Outside of the kitchen, he enjoys spending time with his family and fishing.

The libations at Verge are phenomenal. (Photos by Digital Nomad Foodie)

The Food and Drinks

We discovered that this restaurant specializes in sous vide. Nearly all of the menu items were prepared this way and are locally sourced. This all leads to some very tasty options to satisfy anyone.

Start with one of their crafted cocktails, like the Grapefruit Basil or The Purple Lady.

The bacon and beer flight is a must order. (Photo by Digital Nomad Foodie)

Immediately afterwards, make sure you order the bacon and beer flight. Trust me, this is a must-order. The various types of bacon (turkey, sometimes duck, beef, pork and dark chocolate-covered) pair perfectly with each type of beer.

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Ask for the popovers and spread the black currant butter on these hot morsels. (Photo by Digital Nomad Foodie)

Also, do not forget to ask the very friendly wait-staff for the pop-overs. If you love, fresh-out-the-oven hot and moist pop-overs, then you need these in your life, especially with the black currant butter spread.

Since we've eaten here multiple times, I can honestly tell you that the quality of each dish just amazes me every time. I'm sure that it has something to do with the sous vide.

A plate of finger-licking Asian BBQ Pork Spare Ribs. (Photo by Digital Nomad Foodie)

For those of you who aren't aware what sous vide is, the official definition from leading-sous vide seller, Anova is, "a cooking technique that utilizes precise temperature control to deliver consistent, restaurant-quality results."

Executive Chef Nguyen-Phuoc explained, that "in the past sous vide were much bigger in size and very expensive", but now these amazing devices are much cheaper for the home cook.

As you can see from the photo of the Asian BBQ Pork Spare Ribs above you can see that the sky is the limit for gourmet sous vide dishes.

If you aren't hungry yet, this Crispy Buttermilk Chicken dish should entice you. (Photo by Digital Nomad Foodie)

If that doesn't persuade you maybe you should try their Crispy Buttermilk Chicken. It's perfectly moist inside retaining it's natural juices, but expertly fried on the outside, which makes this another dish you must try.

I hope this review gives a lot insight for anyone who might be staying at the Toll House Hotel and were wondering if Verge Restaurant was worth giving a shot. Trust me, yes it's totally worth dining here, the food is fantastic and the service is superb.

Please comment below on your own personal experiences or questions you might have.

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About Digital Nomad Foodie

Digital Nomad Foodie is a native of the San Francisco Bay Area.  He was a paratrooper in the U.S. Army and has lived all over the world.  In addition to blogging, he is also a digital nomad working in healthcare.  He writes about his experiences and recommendations in various locations around the world.  His photos and reviews have helped over 79 million people learn about local & exotic destinations plus delicious food and can be seen on InstagramGoogle Maps and Yelp.


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