About The Elephant Trail

Welcome to The Elephant Trail


Our restaurant and family are uniquely American. Arriving in Connecticut in the 1980s from Cambodia by way of Thailand and upstate New York, now four generations of our family have made their home here.

As a child, Owner/Executive Chef Soden Tek had spent every night at his mother and grandmother's elbows in the kitchen, watching them expertly cook Thai and Cambodian dishes - both traditional and updated for their new homeland. He dreamed of one day being able to share his passion for Southeast Asian cuisine with the country that he now called home.

After majoring in Diet & Nutrition at UMass-Amherst, Soden used his experiences as a student of both his family and his college to inform his cooking. In 2005, he left the drudgery of his corporate cubicle for a chance to follow his passion, partnering with his older sister Sohors , and opening The Elephant Trail Thai Cuisine in Avon.

As the family learned how to run a successful restaurant together, they set their sights on opening a second location, hoping to give back even more to the community that nurtured them as a young refugee family in the 1980s. The Blue Elephant Trail opened in West Hartford Center in 2010; Sohors was recognized as a local leader in Hartford Magazine's "The Best of Hartford" the following year. Their restaurants have won numerous accolades and are perennial entries on "Best of" lists for the region.

In 2012, as they began planning an upgrade for their original restaurant in Avon to a bigger and better location, Sohors tragically lost a battle with pancreatic cancer.

A year later, Soden turned his sister's dream of a bigger space into a reality, moving from a 44-seat space to a 90-seat dining room with state of the art technology, a private room for special events, and a beautiful view of the Farmington River.

Today, under Soden's guidance, the entire family pitches in and continues to ensure both restaurants thrive. Most recently, younger cousin Brian Keo has taken on a managerial role, paying tribute to the original vision - great food, great service, and a caring family.