Want the intel on San Jose's most talked-about local spots?
We took a data-driven look at the question, using Yelp and SafeGraph, a dataset of commercial points of interest and their visitor patterns, to discover which restaurants have been getting outsized notice this month.
To find out who made the list, we first looked at San Jose businesses on Yelp by category and counted how many reviews each received. Rather than compare them based on number of reviews alone, we calculated a percentage increase in reviews over the past month, and tracked businesses that consistently increased their volume of reviews to identify statistically significant outliers compared to past performance. Then we analyzed foot traffic data from SafeGraph to validate the trends.
Read on to see which spots are worth exploring, right now.
Open since June, this Mexican and breakfast and brunch spot is trending compared to other businesses categorized as "Breakfast & Brunch" on Yelp.
Citywide, breakfast and brunch spots saw a median 1.4% increase in new reviews over the past month, but Tostadas saw a 60.8% increase, maintaining a sound four-star rating throughout.
It's not the only trending outlier in the breakfast and brunch category: iJava Cafe has seen a 4.7% increase in reviews.
Tostadas is located at 304 E. Santa Clara St., Suite A in downtown San Jose. The restaurant specializes in tostadas with chicken, chorizo and shrimp. It also offers a vegan tostada that comes with avocado spread, refried beans, soy-rizo, pico de gallo and corn. Also look for stuffed poblano chili, shrimp fajitas and pork flautas, which are each served with refried beans and rice.
Tostadas is open from 7 a.m.–3 p.m. on Monday, Tuesday and Sunday, 7 a.m.–3 p.m. and 5 p.m.–9:30 p.m. on Wednesday and Thursday and 7 a.m.–3 p.m. and 5 p.m.–10 p.m. on Friday and Saturday.
Aura Kitchen and Bar
Whether or not you've been hearing buzz about downtown San Jose's Aura Kitchen and Bar, the bar is a hot topic according to Yelp review data.
While businesses categorized as "Bars" on Yelp saw a median 1.1% increase in new reviews over the past month, Aura Kitchen and Bar bagged a 15.6% increase in new reviews within that time frame, maintaining a two-star rating. It significantly outperformed the previous month by gaining 6.0 times more reviews than expected based on its past performance.
Open at 389 S. First St. since August 2015, Aura Kitchen and Bar offers sushi, rice bowls and salads, alongside specialty cocktails like the Watermelon Moonshine (white whiskey, watermelon liqueur and lemon juice) and the California Crush (Absolut Citron, Veev, lime wedges, blackberries and strawberries).
7 Leaves Cafe
West San Jose's 7 Leaves Cafe is also making waves. Open since May 2019 at 375 Saratoga Ave., the popular spot to score bubble tea, coffee and tea and macarons has seen a 31.2% bump in new reviews over the last month, compared to a median review increase of 2.3% for all businesses tagged "Coffee & Tea" on Yelp.
There's more than one hot spot trending in San Jose's coffee and tea category: Oh My Boba has seen a 24.4% increase in reviews, and Lucky Tea has seen a 12.7% bump. Over the past month, it's maintained a strong four-star rating among Yelpers.
On the menu, look for housemade flavored teas, crafted from raw ingredients like pandan leaves, mung beans, taro roots and passion fruit. The eatery offers jasmine milk tea, Japanese soy matcha, sea cream black coffee and more. An array of macarons, baked in-house, are also available.
7 Leaves Cafe is open from 7 a.m.–11 p.m. on Monday-Thursday, 7 a.m.–midnight on Friday, 8 a.m.–midnight on Saturday and 8 a.m.–11 p.m. on Sunday.
Super Duper Burgers
West San Jose's Super Duper Burgers is the city's buzziest traditional American spot by the numbers.
The traditional American spot, which offers burgers and more and opened at 5399 Prospect Road on December 2018, increased its new review count by 7.1% over the past month, an outlier when compared to the median new review count of 0.9% for the Yelp category "American (Traditional)."
Super Duper Burgers, which is locally owned and operated, offers a variety of burgers and sandwiches made with sustainable ingredients. Dig into the all-natural beef burger, the chicken sandwich or the veggie burger; or stop by for an organic shake or soft-serve ice cream cone.
Super Duper Burgers is open from 8 a.m.–10 p.m. daily.
Jewel of India
Capital Goss's well-established Jewel of India has seen a major increase in foot traffic recently.
While Jewel of India stayed in line with the median 1.4% increase in new reviews for businesses categorized as "Seafood" on Yelp over the past month, the business saw visits double, according to SafeGraph's foot traffic data.
There's more abuzz in the world of San Jose seafood: Slapfish has seen a 6% increase in reviews.
Open for business at 2634 Alum Rock Ave. since 2006, Jewel of India offers North Indian dishes, with specialties like the aloo chaat papri — crispy flat wafers layered with potatoes and chutney. When it comes to dessert, the Indian spot serves mango ice cream and gulab jamun, fried milk balls served in a sweet syrup.
Jewel of India is open from 10 a.m.–9:30 p.m. daily. According to SafeGraph, people visit Jewel of India most on Mondays and Saturdays, and it attracts half of its total visitors over those two days. If you’re planning your visit, you may want to try its slower periods on Tuesdays.