A couple of days ago, my husband, Jim, and I enjoyed outside dining at North Restaurant, a downtown Los Gatos eatery offering seasonal Vietnamese food. It was our first visit there. The meals and service could not have been better, so I wanted to give them a shout out here on the Live in Los Gatos blog.
We arrived at North a little before 12 noon and wanted a table away from other diners and the sidewalk. It wasn’t too crowded and we were seated in a corner by ourselves. A nice surprise was noting plexiglass between our table and one nearby. The parklet was also covered, which was helpful with the summer sun.
Superb service at North Restaurant
Our server was masked, which we appreciated, and came quickly to take our order. We didn’t have to wait long for the food after ordering. Throughout our meal, he would look in our direction to see if we might need anything, and did step over to ask directly if all was ok and if he could get us anything. We never felt rushed, but he was around. When we paid our bill it was the same – he didn’t waste any time, but never made us feel like we needed to hurry. Kudos on the service, it was an 11 on a scale of 1 to 10. (He probably told us his name, and we forget it, unfortunately!)
The offerings were diverse and tempting! One item that I’ll return to have next time is the crab spring rolls, which was advertised as including “Rice Paper, Dungeness Crab, Avocado, Mango, Rice Vermicelli, Green Leaf Lettuce, Mint, Soy Vinaigrette”. So often, restaurants offer crab dishes but actually serve fake crab – but this is Dungeness!
Lunch: so good that a return visit will happen
I was torn between making a lunch out of the crab spring rolls and having the Vietnamese Chicken Salad, but the chicken salad won out in the end and it was delicious. The ingredients included “Shredded Chicken Breast, Cabbage, Carrot, Basil, Crispy Shallot, Roasted Peanut and House Vinaigrette”. There was a hint of anise or fennel, so perhaps that was in the dressing, but it worked brilliantly. (Unfortunately I neglected to take a photo of it, but the presentation was beautiful, too.)
This salad was listed under appetizers, and it could have been shared by 2-3 people as such. (It came in a bowl with a serving dish, so I only put onto my plate as much as I wanted.) Some of it came home as leftovers.
Jim was drawn to a couple of meat dishes and almost ordered the shaking beef, but decided on the mango beef dish (“Sliced Beef Tenderloin, Mango, Red Bell Peppers, Snow Peas, Red Onion, Scallion”), which came with rice. I stole a taste and would love to have that in the future, too.
This is definitely a restaurant where we will go back again. The prices seemed reasonable for downtown Los Gatos. We were grateful for the quality service, the thoughtful way in which we and other patrons were treated during this pandemic (plexiglass, masks), the incredibly delicious food, and the wide variety of offerings.
North Vietnamese restaurant is located in downtown Los Gatos in the heart of the main drag:
133 N. Santa Cruz Ave. Los Gatos, CA 95030 (Between Nicholson and Bean)
They are open for lunch and for dinner. Please check the North website for their hours of operation, as they may change depending on the season:
By the way, you can also order online!
Related Reading – more Los Gatos restaurant reviews
Kamakura Japanese Restaurant (next door to North)