Later Coachella, hello Palm Springs Restaurant Week. Now is the time to visit the desert before temps get too hot. Consider doing something besides staying at your hotel and lounging by the pool all day, and save that for when it’s too hot to do anything else. From May 29-June 7 you can embark on the culinary adventure that is Palm Springs Restaurant Week, where restaurants, hotels, and attractions offer deals and curated menus. I suggest pacing yourself with at least three days and nights, and doing activities in-between meals to work your appetite back up. Here are 10 reasons you should go, and all these listed are offering something special for the event.
The Riviera’s Circa 59 restaurant, photo: @michelleyam
1. Find hotel deals ranging from the historical Riviera in the heart of Palm Springs, or a hop, skip and a dip at The Spring mineral spa in Desert Hot Springs. Just ask them about their Restaurant Week specials when you want to book.
2. Admire the mountain side, and historic Cary Grant Estate, with dinner at Copley’s. Order a martini to down with Hawaiian ahi tacos in sesame miso shells topped with Tobiko caviar, and prosciutto wrapped duck breast over baby spinach, carrots, and Asian duck leg pancake.
Brunch fixin’s at BluEmber Restaurant, photo: @michelleyam
3. Get 10% off any Red Jeep Desert Adventures eco-tour. May I suggest the celebrity home tour where your enthusiastic guide will tell you the juice about Frank Sinatra’s first house, where Elvis and Priscilla honeymooned, plus an introduction to mid-century architecture.
3. Have lunch at the Clementine gourmet marketplace and cafe in Palm Desert, where you will have a scrumptious Euro-Mediterranean meal. Highlights here are the grilled balsamic baguette with house smoked whitefish tomato provencal and soft poached egg, and the Musabaha — house made hummus topped with shaved Moroccan beef, spiced garbanzos, and salad with lemon dressing.
Lemon meringue at Clementine, photo: @samalot
4. Get around town free and in style in the new Buzz trolleys that run from 11am – 1am, Thursday – Sunday, every 15 minutes. They’re air-conditioned, pet-friendly, and you can’t miss them bedecked in bright colors.
5. Trio is always a good time. Pop by for happy hour or dinner, for the calamari and ceviche, or heavier fare like the St. Louis style spare ribs or pork chop with bacon jam.
The view from the top, photo: @michelleyam
6. See Palm Springs from a different perspective and take the Aerial Tramway up the Chino Canyon to 8,516 ft. above where there’s various hikes through the Mt. San Jacinto State Park. The Peaks Restaurant is offering a special menu that includes a discounted tram ticket.
7. Do dinner at Tinto at the Saguaro and feast on delish Spanish tapas and white sangria. My must-eats were the house smoked Marcona almonds, the garlic and paprika Chorizo a la Planxa, and the Albondigas — lamb meatballs with sherry cream and black truffle.
The Albondigas at Tinto, photo: @elinashatkin
8. Brunch at Norma’s at The Parker is a treat. Indulgent comfort foods sum up the menu, where standouts are the sky-scraping Very Berry Brioche French Toast and the Egg White Frittata of Shrimp, with oven-roasted Roma tomato and spinach.
9. Top off any day with a live show and nightcap at The Purple Room, which keeps the old school Rat Pack vibe alive.
Martini time at Copley’s, photo: @elinashatkin
10. Spend what you saved at Restaurant Week at the Desert Hills Premium Outlets. Drop by customer service to get a VIP coupon book and forgo In-N-Out and try Crazy Coyote Tacos located at the end of Seminole Drive in Cabazon, right before you get back on the 10.
The Parker, photo: @vagabond3