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Dining Around The Desert: Le Vallauris, Palm Springs

Established in the heart of Palm Springs in 1973, Le Vallauris located at the foot of San Jacinto Mountains has been the highest-rated restaurant in the Palm Springs Valley since its inception.

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Michael and I celebrated our one-year anniversary at Le Vallauris as my team, Betsy Justice, Lisa Blodgett, and Kayla Cunard, had given us a very generous gift certificate for our wedding and we figured this was the ideal time to put it to use.

Executive Chef, Jean Paul Lair, and Co-Owner, Paul Bruggemans, have gone above and beyond to create a magnificent, romantic eatery unlike any other in town. Le Vallauris is the definition of French elegance, California cool and Mediterranean magnificence.

That atmosphere at Le Vallauris is second to none. Ornate Flemish tapestries and Louis XV furnishings adorn the indoor space, while mature lupe ficus trees and lush landscaping take center stage on the breath-stealing al fresco dinning patio. Indeed, Le Vallauris is a utopian secret garden tucked away in the middle of the desert. It’s a place perfectly suited for both intimate, romantic dinners and large, joyful weddings.

In keeping with tradition, the menu at Le Vallauris is written out by hand daily…just another one of the many touches that make it a cut above the rest. Chef Lair understands that a memorable restaurant requires more than just great atmosphere; inspired, delicious dishes is what brings people back to Le Vallauris again and again and again.

A fusion of Mediterranean, French and California cuisine, Le Vallauris’ menu is something to behold. Unlike some restaurants, Chef Lair’s menu is updated weekly and he only uses the freshest ingredients. Diners have their choice of the weekly prix fixe, a la carte and degustation menus. Yes, Le Vallauris does also offer a lunch menu. Whether you’re in the mood for a savory tartare or sweet vegetarian dish, your palate won’t be disappointed by Chef Lair’s offerings. The desserts? You’ll think you’ve died and literally gone to heaven upon tasting one of Le Vallauris’ sweet treats.

We started with a Roquefort Stuffed Bartlett Pear with walnuts, baby frisse, and Belgian endive and a Blue Crab salad with mango, fennel, tarragon, avocado, and citrus dressing.

Michael then had the Roasted Rack of Lamb with a mustard herb & bread crumb crust, au jus, ratatouille, and potato croquette and I had the Maine Lobster Raviolis in a basil bisque with claws and knuckles

For dessert, we had a Grand Marnier souffle that was exquisite.

There are certain restaurants that are good, but don’t leave a lasting memory. Le Vallauris is no such place. Between the gorgeous garden patio, magnificent menu, romantic setting, and well-considered wine list, Jean Paul Lair’s and Paul Bruggemans’ gourmet bistro is sure to leave a wonderful, lasting impression…even for the most finicky of foodies.

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Le Vallauris is located at 385 W Tahquitz Canyon Way, Palm Springs, CA 92262.

Open 7 days a week from 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. and from 5:00 p.m. to 10:30 p.m.

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