Lunch With Heart & Soul

Alesia’s on Central Avenue in St. Petersburg is truly the purest example of fresh and innovative cooking that we have experienced in years. This perfect blend of Vietnamese and French cuisine obviously comes from a very genuine place in the hearts of Alesia’s three founding partners who bring their beloved ethnic backgrounds from the kitchen to your table as an expression of love.

As it was a beautiful and sunny 70 degree January day in St. Pete we decided to be seated on Alesia’s patio and take in the warmth as well as the scenery.

I ordered a Japanese IPA which paired nicely with an appetizer order of light and airy shrimp chips served with a finely diced apple, red onion, cilantro and mint salsa.


After spending some time with the menu Jim decided to order the traditional Pho with Vietnamese rice noodles, fresh herbs and thinly sliced beef brisket in a broth that was heavenly in every way and made even better by adding just a bit of Hoisin sauce.

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I opted for the dish called Bun which was a bowl of cool rice vermicelli noodles served over finely chopped lettuce and sprinkled with chopped peanuts. There were many options available for adding to the bowl and I chose the combination of a  grilled pork skewer and crispy egg rolls.

It is hard to describe the pleasure we took in seeing how the beautifully executed colors, flavors and textures came together in each of our selections. We rarely finish every morsel of food but in this case we did as it was not overly filling but satisfying in every way.

We are grateful to our server Oie who was pleasant, helpful and efficient at all times.  The staff in general appears to be confident and well trained. As forty year professionals in the hospitality industry that is something we admire greatly.

Make Alesia’s top on your list for lunch, dinner or Saturday brunch soon and feed not only you body but your soul.

The Vermicelli noodles provided a bit of a task for me. I always thought I was proficient & when I watch Anthony Bourdain when he visits worlds of Asian cuisine and I admire the way noodle soups are consumed with bowl to the mouth and swift chopstick and noodle deposition to the customer enjoying their meal.

So, we included a helpful lesson on how to use the beautiful bamboo chopsticks accompanying the meals we received.

Patti Abate is a food, restaurant & lover of great service. Forty years of passion for an industry will make that happen. Please keep up you support of the Tampa Bay’s Remarkable Restaurant Blog by signing up for a free subscription. And thank you from the heart.

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