Dining Around the Desert: Cuistot, Counter Reformation, & Indian Wells Tennis Garden Champagne Tent

Fashion Week Pre-Show Dinner at Cuistot

Fashion Week Pre-Show Dinner at Cuistot

Cuistot, Palm Desert

During last month's Fashion Week, one of the pre-show places my girlfriends and I got a bite to eat at was Cuistot in Palm Desert. 

We started off with an avocado fan with warm goat cheese, in a shallot, olive oil and cracked black pepper dressing which was one of our favorite items.

We also had a fresh beet and cream cheese Napoleon with a smoked salmon and horseradish herb vinaigrette along with a salad of mixed baby greens and smoked salmon.

The service was superb, friendly and the staff couldn't have been nicer.

Cuistot is proud to be the only restaurant in the valley to have earned the Best of Award of Excellence from Wine Spectator Magazine every year since 2005. They’re also the valley’s only recipient of the Award of Unique Distinction from Wine Enthusiast Magazine. 

Regular Business Hours: Tuesday to Friday 11:30 am – 2:30 pm
Saturday 11 am - 2:30 pm, Dinner every day from 5:30 pm

Happy Hour every day from 4-6 pm

Live Entertainment (Video)Thursday Evening: Eric Frankson, Piano

72-595 El Paseo
Palm Desert, CA 92260


Counter Reformation at The Parker, Palm Springs

On a recent visit to Counter Reformation at the Parker, Palm Springs, my friends Don, Sharon and I shared some of the best food we’ve had in a long time.

We shared Blinis and “Caviars”, Braised Baby Artichoke Hearts with Mediterranean olive oil and wild arugula salad, Grilled Prawn Brochette with sun dried tomato Panzanella and an Avocado, Haloumi & Rye Tartine with shaved Iberico.

Nothing on the menu is over $14 and it was all exquisite. The bartenders were some of the most knowledgeable wine experts in the valley. Those ladies know their stuff! Needless to say, they have a wonderful wine list. 

After one visit, you will be a convert. I'm looking forward to trying Mr. Parker's next!

Thursday, Friday, & Monday 3pm-10pm
Saturday & Sunday 12pm-10pm
Closed Tuesday & Wednesday

Address: 4200 E Palm Canyon Dr, Palm Springs, CA 92264

Phone: (760) 770-5000

Indian Wells Tennis Garden Moet Tent

Indian Wells Tennis Garden Moet Tent

Champagne, Tennis, 72 degrees at night...pretty much says it all. We'll be back next year!

How to Navigate Coachella 2017

Photo by Chris Miller

Photo by Chris Miller

Having lived just minutes from Coachella for years, I can personally attest that what she says is true! I would add to wear comfortable shoes that you don't mind getting dirty. 

Article by CAROLINE RYDER/Palm Springs Life Magazine


The Coachella lineup is a dizzying, many-headed hydra filled with hidden treasures and dead ends. Spend a few days checking out the bands you haven’t heard of on Soundcloud, Spotify, YouTube, and iTunes, then print out your list of preferred acts and set times. Congratulations, you have a strategy, based in science.

Scalp sunburn is real, even if you have a lustrous head of hair, so the No. 1 item to plan for is a hat. Make sure it’s both a fun and practical hat you will actually wear. It won’t do your noggin any good if you’re just twirling it around in your fingers. Panama hats are always a good choice and pussy hats will probably be big this year. Shades are important too, but bring a cheap pair you don’t mind losing. 

If you want to bring a change of clothes for cooler temperatures once the sun goes down, you can stash your things in on-site lockers. Reserve yours online at www.lockersonline.com — they will sell out before the festival. (Side note: If you buy vinyl, don’t stash it in your locker. It will melt.)


1. Chapstick.

2. Tissues or a small toilet roll in case the port-a-potties run low. Baby wipes for your dusty hands.

3. Ibuprofen for the crashing dehydration headache.

4. Benadryl for the dust allergies.

5. Your best sunglasses have no business being at Coachella.

6. Be sure to bring your medications in their original bottles, unless you want them confiscated by security. 

7. Earplugs aren’t necessary, but if you’re not interested in throbbing post-festival tinnitus they’re a worthy investment. If you forgot yours, ask the security guards at the side of the stage if they have a free set. 

8. Your phone charger is both your friend and your lifeline. Do not leave home without it. Oh, and sorry ravers — glow sticks are verboten.


The best way to get to Coachella is to buy a shuttle pass. Take an Uber or Lyft to your closest shuttle stop. You’ll get dropped off relatively close to the entrances.

If you drive yourself, you’ll inevitably get stuck in bumper-to-bumper traffic along Jefferson, Madison, and Monroe streets. As far as presidents go, stick to the 19th century. If you find yourself getting more recent than, say, Eisenhower, you’re in the wrong place.

Unless you’re friends with a band and have the highly coveted artist parking pass, you will face the excruciating pit of torture known as Coachella parking. The golden rule: Always mark your position on a car-finder app or write down directions to your vehicle. You will 100 percent forget where you parked. Trust us on this.

Allow two hours between parking and getting inside the festival on day one.


Explore. If you have a VIP wristband, go to the rose garden and the lake! You’ll feel like the kids who got ahold of the keys to the country club.

It’s 5:55 p.m., your favorite band is playing, and you want to get up close. Just remember that there’s an unwritten rule at Coachella that says if you arrive late for the band’s show and try to push your way to the front, you’re a bad person. So, aim to arrive at least a half-hour early for the set (45 minutes early if you’re short). If you manage to reach the stage, let’s hope you’re not wearing open-toe shoes. Your feet will be crushed. And don’t be the person holding up your iPad to film the entire show, blocking the view of those behind. Just don’t.

If you want to drink and watch a band, the general admission beer garden to the right of the main stage allows you to glimpse the performance with your Heineken in hand.


If you forgot where you parked your car — well, we warned you…

You could Uber home, but expect extreme surge pricing after the festival ends to around 3 a.m. Don’t be surprised if the Uber back to your party pad 10 miles away is priced in the vicinity of $250. 

If you don’t feel like going home, these are some likely spots to unwind:

• The pool at the Ace Hotel. The after-party (and use of pool) requires a wristband.
Vista Point on Highway 74. One of the best spots for sunrise … and it’s free.

• The Beer Hunter in La Quinta is a favorite among locals in the service industry. It’s got pool tables and it’s open until 2 a.m.

• Duck into one of the casinos and try your luck to win back some of that money you shelled out in the beer gardens.


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