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Summer Food and Cocktails

man in pool with cocktail

Refreshment Refined

By Kevin Perry

Experiences have flavor. Conjure up your favorite vacation moments and savor the associations simmering in your senses. Most likely, you are remembering the morsels that expanded your horizons and the beverages that washed down a life well lived. Palm Springs sunshine paired with summer food and and the clink of martini glasses.

Get ready to add to your menu of memories because we are on the cusp of a delectable summer season. Palm Springs is renowned for its world-class restaurants and bars, so we are already anticipating the best ways to brave the heat with a cool selection of dining and summer cocktail destinations.

Summer Food and Drinks Paired with Color

If you hadn’t noticed, we like things bright and cheery, and what better place to start a colorful stay this summer than at the Saguaro Palm Springs. Head into El Jefe for fresh fruit margaritas, tacos on the lawn, daily happy hour, and in-room dining.  With Palm Springs’ largest selection of tequilas and mescals, a hand-picked variety of locally-brewed beers, and hand-crafted cocktails, summer food never tasted so good.

summer cocktail at Jefe

A Little Cheeky for Breakfast

Let’s start the day deliciously with breakfast at a local legend: Cheeky’s. Their bacon flight will bring you to new heights of NomNomNom while their inventive egg dishes keep you grounded. Don’t forget to sneak a sip of Cheeky’s boozy lemonade because… summer! The courtyard provides pockets of shade, but be sure to arrive early – this place is popular for a reason!

cheeky's bacon flight

Summer Food to Satisfy

Satisfy your sweet tooth without packing on the carbs (they’re so last season) with the light and lemony griddlecakes at Norma’s. Nestled stylishly at The Parker, the open-air surroundings are a welcome blast of color and calm. Pair your nosh with an amusing rosé and drink in the relaxation.

norma's at the parker

From upscale to down home, Palm Springs is a melting pot of melt-in-your-mouth fare. Wilma & Frieda are teaming up to tackle your mid-morning hunger. Gauge your portions according to their sliding scale: eeny if you’re feeling peckish, meany for a splash of meat, miney to double the decadence, or mo for the deluxe treatment.

After all, the key to staying cool is pacing your palate. If you load yourself down with heavy grub, you’ll feel the weight of summer bearing down on you. Instead, craft your diet without denying your appetite. Summer food to keep you happy.

Since you’re already indulging, raise a glass to brunch or lunch Palm Springs summer cocktails at Grand Central. The “basic bee bubbly” infuses gin with organic honey and lavender liqueur before blanketing the crisp concoction with a ticklish coat of Prosecco. Hello, afternoon ahh!

Grand Central Mimosa

Lazy Lunches

Sounds impossible? Don’t worry; we crunched the numbers for you – the numbers Eight4Nine, specifically. Their array of offerings tantalizes your taste buds in a breezy yet substantial manner. From the cauliflower steak to the salmon Niçoise salad, you’ll have plenty of room for a slab of sinful caramel macchiato cake (we won’t tell!).

Eight4Nine Salmon Salad

Before you drink the day away, be sure to cushion your consumption with comfort food. Nothing says summer food like burgers, so get up in our grill and try the best patties in Palm Springs. Tyler’s is a Palm Springs institution with a hearty side of open wide! Also consider a trek over to Revel Public House, where the eponymous burger is piled with avocado and a sunny side up fried egg. This is protein perfected.

Tyler's Burger
Tyler’s Burger

If you think desert dining is spare, we simply say oh, contraire! Immerse yourself in the ambience of southern France right here in the convenience of southern California. Farm Palm Springs ushers you from the shimmering heat to a lush Provencal paradise. Stroll through an outdoor garden setting while enjoying light appetizers like watermelon gazpacho paired with a botanical berry signature cocktail.

Something Chilled at Dusk

As dusk caresses the mountain ridge, explore the full potential of your summer evening, gastronomically speaking. Truss & Twine launches you into a vintage vibe, serving bespoke spirits like the game changer. Chilled gin mingles with cucumber, sugar, lime, celery bitters, sea salt and onion brine. You will be swimming in succulence, anchored wisely by T&T’s small plates such as the marinated beet salad and charcuterie elevated.

Truss and Twine

No trip to downtown would be complete without a visit to Lulu California Bistro. The entrees are fulfilling and fresh, including dishes like Alaskan cod and a fresh strawberry salad. Complete the seasonal slam-dunk with cocktails that range from the pear drop martini to the cucumber cooler to the key lime pie. Yes, it’s as great as it sounds!

Summer Food South of the Border

For the perfect synthesis of summery and spicy, check into El Mirasol at Los Arboles Hotel. In addition to some of the best traditional Mexican dishes in town, you can find playfully pleasing plates like shrimp sautéed in garlic and olive oil or chicken coated in a sauce derived from ground pumpkin seeds. And oh, the margaritas make a perfect Palm Springs summer cocktail. Chill your cravings with a choice of Patron, Don Julio or Hornitos infused concoctions. Blend in fresh mangos or strawberries; your whim is El Mirasol’s mission. Or opt for a true classic: de la casa margarita, the recipe that has accompanied 25 Palm Springs summers and counting.

El Mirasol at Los Arboles Patio

Our hometown epitomizes the vacation months. The landscape is balmy and beautiful, and our cuisine reflects its surroundings. Trust the locals to quench your summer thirst and satiate your burning hunger; they know the terrain and they serve accordingly.

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