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A Food Lover’s Guide to Palm Springs

The table top view of different types of food spread on table.

By Kevin Perry

When silver screen stars from the Golden Age of Hollywood escaped the confines of Tinseltown, they didn’t abandon their appetite for excellence. That’s why Palm Springs continues to serve A-list plates.

Whether you’re a local or a visitor, this Palm Springs food guide will take you on a culinary journey through the best restaurants and hidden gems Palm Springs offers.

Palm Springs Restaurants Guide – Breakfast/Brunch

Welcome to the ultimate destination for a delightful breakfast or brunch experience. This vibrant city offers diverse dining options that cater to every palate. Palm Springs has everything from charming cafes with outdoor patios and breathtaking mountain views to trendy brunch spots serving innovative dishes made from locally sourced ingredients. Whether you’re craving classic breakfast favorites like fluffy pancakes and crispy bacon or seeking a healthier alternative with fresh juices and avocado toast, you’ll find an abundance of culinary delights to satisfy your morning cravings.

Wilma & Frieda’s Cafe: Start your day with a farmhouse-style café with an urban twist. This is comfort food with a twist. The restaurant is named after the owner’s two grandmothers, Wilma and Frieda. Brunch specialty is their signature griddled meatloaf topped with two eggs any style. Go for the homemade biscuit served on the side. For something sweet, order the house-made pop tart.

Wilma & Frieda meatloaf

Cheeky’s: If you’re looking for a trendy and quirky breakfast spot, look no further than Cheeky’s. Their ever-changing menu features creative dishes made from locally sourced ingredients. Must order: Famous bacon flight with flavors like thyme honey, black garlic, and parmesan. The menu changes weekly. Be patient, as it’s a popular hot spot, and they don’t take reservations. This is a Michelin Guide restaurant.

cheeky's bacon flight
Kings Highway at Ace Hotel: Set in a retro-chic motel, Kings Highway offers a hipster vibe and delicious comfort food from locally sourced ingredients. Indulge in their ricotta pancakes with soft butter and maple syrup, or try their avocado toast with tomato jam, crispy shallots, opal basil, and breakfast radish.

kings highway
Farm: Heavily inspired by southern French food and culture, Farm brings a classy yet quaint dining experience. A favorite is the Croque Madame, served with Jambon de Paris (sweet cured ham), gruyère cheese, béchamel, sunny egg, multi-grain toast, and mixed greens with sherry vinaigrette. Also, it is an excellent spot for lunch. Reservations recommended.

Farm restaurant Croque Madame breakfast

Norma’s at The Parker: Located inside The Parker Palm Springs hotel, Norma’s is known for its luxurious breakfast offerings. Treat yourself to their famous “Waz-Za” waffles stuffed with fruit and topped with crackly brulee. The $150 zillion-dollar lobster frittata is served with white sturgeon reserve.

norma's at the parker

Boozehounds: This is a great place to bring your dog for brunch on the weekend. Order the blueberry ube cheese blintz with ricotta, house-made jam, blueberry juniper compote, and matcha powder for something sweet. Seafood lovers will enjoy the shrimp and grits with sharp cheddar cheese, Thai basil gremolata, and crispy fried shallots. Heartier choices include the breakfast burger with beef patty, chorizo, fried egg, bacon, cheddar cheese, and hollandaise.

Group and dog in front of Boozehounds

Palm Springs Restaurants Guide – Lunch

Soak up the warm sun while enjoying a delicious lunch and immerse yourself in this beautiful city’s laid-back and vibrant atmosphere. With its unique combination of flavors and inviting dining venues, Palm Springs is the perfect destination for a memorable lunch experience.

1501 Uptown Gastropub: This casual restaurant is next to Arrive Palm Springs Hotel and brings the outdoors in with floor-to-ceiling windows in an open and airy space. They offer small plates, salads, and sandwiches. Try the pressed Kobe short rib and cheddar with pickled ruby cabbage and horseradish mayo. The Cubano is also popular with iron skillet roasted port, Virginia ham, gruyere, dill pickles, and sour cherry dijon.

Sherman’s Deli & Bakery: Craving a classic deli-style lunch? This long-standing Palm Springs institution serves generous portions of authentic Jewish deli favorites. Their pastrami sandwiches on rye and matzo ball soup are legendary.

Sherman's Deli_Visit Palm Springs_KF

Gabino’s Greperie: Nestled in the curve at South Palm Canyon, this hidden gem specializes in savory crepes instead of the more traditional sweet ones. The BBQ chicken and Buffalo ranch are filled with bold, tasty flavors.


Tyler’s Burgers: Tyler’s is another Palm Springs institution that has been serving simple yet delicious burgers since 1996. Two popular items are the bacon cheeseburger and grilled cheese for the cheese lover. Their organic buns are delivered fresh daily.

tyler burger

Lulu California Bistro: With its modern ambiance and stunning patio, it’s the perfect place to enjoy a leisurely meal, and people watch. The expansive menu has many appetizers, salads, burgers, pasta, pizza, and other entrees. The ahi poke bowl with a favorite with rice, carrots, cucumbers, avocado, seaweed salad, green onions, and wanton crisps.

interior of Lulu

Palm Springs Restaurants Guide – Dinner

Culinary delights continue to impress long after the sun sets. As dusk descends over the desert landscape, this vibrant city transforms into a haven for food lovers searching for an unforgettable dinner experience. With its diverse dining options, Palm Springs offers something to delight every palate and satisfy every craving. From upscale restaurants offering expertly crafted dishes made with locally sourced ingredients to cozy eateries serving comfort food favorites, there’s no shortage of gastronomic treasures waiting to be discovered.

Mr. Lyons: Don’t miss Mr. Lyons for steak lovers, a retro-American steakhouse with a chic ambiance. Signature dishes are the slow-roasted prime rib and beef wellington (beef and vegetarian). Chef-cut steaks include Tomahawk ribeye, New York strip, and filet.

mr lyons dining room

Melvyn’s: Live like Rat Pack royalty at Melvyn’s, tucked away playfully at the Ingleside Estate. Luminaries like Elizabeth Taylor, Salvador Dali, and Howard Hughes cavorted here, so you’re in iconic company. Be sure to order the Steak Diane, prepared to your precise specifications tableside. Their chicken pot pie is legendary. They also have an excellent selection of seafood from their Raw Bar.

Melvyns Restaurant_Dining Room

Workshop Kitchen + Bar: Known for its modern design and farm-to-table concept, Workshop Kitchen + Bar offers a classy and elegant dining experience. Their menu features seasonal ingredients and creative dishes, such as their famous wood-fired flat iron steak and roasted cauliflower. Their Camp Greande Iberico pork chop is also renowned, marinated and grilled over wood and served with a bacon shallot marmalade.

indoor seating workshop bar
Birba: For a laid-back dining experience, head to Birba with a chick, tree-filled outdoor patio. Their menu showcases wood-fired pizzas, fresh salads, pastas, and small plates perfect for sharing. The signature Birba pizza includes prosciutto, honey, chili oil, mozzarella, and San Marzano tomato. They feature their Margherita pizza.

Birba Pizza
Johannes Restaurant: For a sophisticated dining experience, Johannes Restaurant is a must-visit. Serving contemporary European cuisine focusing on Austrian flavors, this restaurant offers dishes like their signature Wiener schnitzel and apple strudel.

Spencer’s: Nestled in a beautiful garden setting, Spencer’s is ideal for a romantic dinner. Their menu features upscale American cuisine, including fresh seafood, prime steaks, and vegetarian options. They are known for their surf and turn with Australian rock lobster tail and black Angus petite filet. Another Spencer’s favorite is the boneless braised beef short ribs. They are also famous for weekend brunch.

Eight4Nine Restaurant & Lounge: If you appreciate the artful presentation and a trendy atmosphere, Eight4Nine Restaurant & Lounge is the place to be. This stylish restaurant in the Uptown Design District offers a diverse menu with options for vegetarians and meat lovers alike. Popular menu items include pork tenderloin, roasted cauliflower steak, and lobster mac & cheese.


4 Saints: This restaurant is located on the rooftop of the Kimpton Rowan Hotel and offers views of the valley. The menu is elegant yet simple. It’s where SoCal meets contemporary southern comfort. Entrees include Chilean sea bass, prime filet, beef short ribs, and Icelandic salmon.

4 Saints_Dining Room
Credit: Laure Joliet

Think Global, Eat Local

Palm Springs offers several international flavors.

L’Atelier Cafe: This is a French bistro that is great for breakfast, lunch, sweets, or appetizers. Some menu items include toasted baguette with house-made preserves, chocolate croissant, and L’Atelier naked eggs.

Miro’s: Start your international tastebud trek at Miro’s and experience their tantalizingly tender cabbage rolls, a family recipe from the old country. You’ll savor the splendor of Eastern European tradition as you escalate to an entrée of Budapest Schnitzel, drizzled with a cream sauce with paprika and mushrooms.

miro's patio seating

Johannes: Schnitzel is also the signature dish at Johannes, a romantic enclave bursting with Bavarian inspiration.

Le Vallauris: Whisk your imagination to the south of France without leaving the city limits. Le Vallauris evokes Provençal succulence in the heart of downtown. Dine under the stars as you sample their venison prepared in currant sauce and paired with a magnifique wine. The menu constantly changes. The rack of lamb and escargot are popular dishes, as is the sautéed main lobster.

Le Vallauris patio

Il Giardino: This small, comfortable, family-owned business with traditional home-style Italian dishes. You must, must marvel at their salsiccia – a ground sausage dish prepared unlike anywhere else on earth. Il Giardino draws from traditional Sicilian recipes, then adds a Northern Italian cream sauce twist that feeds your soul.

Tac/Quila: Locally owned, it serves Jalisco-style Mexican food made with fresh, locally-grown ingredients. The restaurant also offers craft tequila and mescal cocktails, boutique wines, and beers. Start with the beer tempura avocado bites with pickled tequila onions and spicy aioli and popular. For the main, enjoy the carne asada steak with guacamole, pinto beans, roasted jalapeno, cambray onion, and homemade tortillas.

Sandfish Sushi & Whiskey: Locally owned by top-awarded sushi chef Engin Onural, Sandfish offers a global twist on traditional Japanese cuisine. The menu includes appetizers, salads, sashimi, nigiri sushi, maki rolls, classic rolls, hand rolls, and signature rolls. They also have a whisky bar.

Palm Springs Restaurant Guide – Vegetarian/Vegan

No meat? No problem! We have various veggie choices in town to satisfy your organic itch.

Chef Tanya’s Kitchen: This café is off the beaten track, and many visitors miss it. The menu offers many plant-based delights, such as the tempeh power burger made with in-house ingredients and the LBTA made with tofu bacon.

Palm Greens Cafe: Make your loved ones envious at Palm Greens Cafe, home of the avocado roll in a bowl, the Taj curry bowl, and the macrobiotic bowl. You’ll be bowled over!

Everything is keen with a peach burrata salad from Native Foods.

But don’t worry about the decadent name of the cheesy treat – it’s vegan all the way! And be sure to stock up on all your non-meat needs at Nature’s Health Food & Cafe, a restaurant within a deli/grocery establishment that caters to your unique yen.

Food Tours

When someone asks what you want for dinner, simply say YES! Variety is the spice of Palm Springs, so be sure to try an array of flavors with a Tasty Tour. Their knowledgeable guides will steer you from hunger to hooray! Trek down Palm Canyon and taste why it’s the main thoroughfare of our hearty hometown.

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