--> Palm Springs Progressive Dinner – “Old & New”  - Visit Palm Springs tag-img

Palm Springs Progressive Dinner – “Old & New” 

4 saints dining room

Part 3 – In a Delicious 4-part Series

By Barbara Beckley

A progressive dinner is a fun way to experience multiple restaurants in one evening. This type of dinner party involves moving from one restaurant to the next, enjoying a different course at each stop. To spice things up, you can mix old and new restaurants on your route. Here’s how you could plan a progressive dinner with old and new restaurants:

Old & New – Stop 1

Las Casuelas Original

Begin at the beginning – with margaritas and 100-year-old recipes at oldie and oh so goodie Las Casuelas. Opened in 1958 Las Casuelas Original is still in the same location on North Palm Canyon Drive (plus two other locations). This Mexican mainstay is now in its fourth generation, dishing out family recipes dating back to matriarch Maria, who cooked for pre-Depression copper miners in Arizona using her famous earthenware pots and pans (cazuelas). Authentic décor and traditionally clad servers make you feel like Maria is still in the room.

Las Casuela Original shrimp

[Read more about the Las Casuelas history]

Las Casuelas Terraza

Pull up a high-top chair under the palapa patio (or inside at a table) at lively Las Casuelas Terraza established in 1979 in a vintage Spanish Mediterranean building on South Palm Canyon Drive. Rock out to the live band. Watch Palm Canyon’s sidewalk action. And enjoy the largest – and some of the most diverse – margaritas in town. Choose from eight margarita styles including nine fruit flavors (think banana, water melon), and more than 100 types of tequila. Maybe blended with imported Triple Sec and Gold Tequila. Or the “Scratch Margarita,” with El Jimado Blanco on the rocks. For the designated driver – the “Top Shelf Margarita,” with Cuervo Tradicional Reposado Tequila, Grand Marnier and Cointreau is a must! No surprise, it’s limited to three per guest.

las casuelas

To share:

“Grandma Fajardo’s Guacamole.” Thick and creamy, the recipe has been handed down for generations. Also, owner Patty Delgado’s “Fresh Fiesta Guacamole,” made with diced, fresh avocado; onions, chopped tomatoes and cilantro.

Las Casuelas Original guacamole

Of course, the “Nachos Rancheros” with crispy flour tortilla chips drowning in melted cheese, diced tomatoes, onions, sliced jalapeno peppers, sour cream, refried beans, and guacamole. And the unexpected “Ceviche.” Lime-marinated shrimp (not white fish) and diced avocado, tossed with scallions, Roma tomatoes, onions, and a dash of Tajin.

Las Casuelas margarita

Old & New  – Stop 2

Bar Cecil

For the main, take a two-minute drive along South Palm Canyon Drive to Palm Springs’ most talked-about new restaurant – Bar Cecil! Helmed by James Beard House guest-chef Executive Chef-Partner Gabe Woo, this intimate, whimsically chic hot spot has been the go-to from the minute it opened in 2022. Named after British fashion photographer, painter, interior decorator and bon vivant Cecil Beaton, Bar Cecil does its namesake proud. Starring as one of Palm Springs’ first Michelin restaurants recommended in the inaugural 2022 Palm Springs Michelin Guide.

Bar Cecil

Sit at the cushy bar. Or a table. Parties of six or less, please. (It’s that intimate and that popular.) Enjoy a cocktail. They’re impressive. Like “The Fifty Dollar Martini.” No joke, it’s $50. Totally worth it with Jean-Charles Boisset Vodka, Alessio Dry Vermouth, and house-made pickled onion. Wines from around the world. Bubbles, perhaps Moet & Chandon Imperial Brut. Even beer – from France: Kronenbourg French Lager.

bar-cecil drinks

Have everyone order a different dish so you can experience more than one. Chef Woo’s incredible “Westholme Australian Wagyu Tomahawk Steak.” The “Pan Seared Jumbo Scallops” with celery root puree, carrot, caulilini, and Vadouvan curry beurre blanc. The best pork chop ever. “Smoked Bone-In Duroc Pork Chop,” with potatoes au gratin, broccolini and seasoned chutney. For veggie fans, the “King Trumpet Mushrooms” with butternut squash risotto, peas, plant butter, vegan Parmesan, and basil. Sides? You bet. Perhaps the “Charred Green Beans” with fresh ground pepper blend, and roasted garlic.

bar cecil pork chop

Old & New  – Stop 3

4 Saints Rooftop Bar & Restaurant

Top off the evening with inspiring views from Palm Springs’ tallest building, paired with southern-inspired desserts and creative after-dinner drinks at the 4 Saints Rooftop Bar & Restaurant. Opened in 2018 atop the seventh floor of the Kimpton Rowan Palm Springs Hotel, this savvy enclave mixes southern comfort food with avant garde techniques – so well in fact – it’s featured in the inaugural 2022 Palm Springs Michelin Guide. Choose high-top tables outside overlooking the city. Movie-star like circular booths inside. Or the view-filled bar – accented with huge golden flamingos.

4 Saints_Dining Room
Credit: Laure Joliet

Flamingos

Flamingos – what?! Yes, siree. And each is ready to make your night. Order the “Flamboyance of Flamingos” and one will be delivered to your table filled with champagne, Absolut Elyx vodka, Billet blanc and fresh grapefruit, with a ladle to pour into all your glasses. Serves six to eight, but who’s counting?

Palm Springs -- 4 Saints restaurant at The Kimpton Rowan flamingos
Credit: Barbara Beckley

Or select from countless libations from Courvoisier VSOP to Ramos Pinto 30 Year Tawny Port, even Absinthe. Put a smile on your face with handcrafted cocktails like “Born to Rum,” with Plantation 3 Stars rum, Aperol, orgeat, lemon, tarragon, and egg white. Or “Ciao Baby,” with gin, Giffard Crème de Peche, prosecco and rosemary. Toast to the desert with the “Highway 111 Old Fashioned” of date-infused Evan Williams bourbon, Sazerac rye and Xocolati mole bitters.

For dessert, think rich, creamy, gooey in the best Southern tradition. Order several and share. For sure the two-person “Chocolate Whiskey Date Cake,” “Flower Pots Sorbet and Ice Cream Inspiration,” and assorted dreamy Crème Brulés.

Part 1: Palm Springs Progressive Dinner – Hipster Cool

Part 2: Palm Springs Progressive Dinner – “Locals’ Delight”  

Palm Springs Progressive Dinner – “Contemporary & Classic”

More From Eat & Drink

View All Posts
Happy Hour drinks

Palm Springs Happy Hour Guide

If you’re looking for a place to enjoy a refreshing cocktail or two after a…

Read More
melvyn's

Historic Restaurants of Palm Springs

Among its many attractions are the historic restaurants that have served locals and visitors for…

Read More
bootleger tiki

Palm Springs Coolest Tiki Lounges

Tiki culture began in the United States in the 1930s, inspired by Polynesian themes and…

Read More