Main Content

Dining Around The Desert

Dining Around the Desert: Flora Farms in San Jose del Cabo, Mexico

Since there hasn't been a lot of new restaurant openings in the Valley lately, I decided to review a fabulous place in San Jose del Cabo, Mexico. Michael and I were down there at the end of April for my birthday, and Flora Farms was the number one place on my list to go.

Flora Farms is a 25-acre organic working farm in the foothills of the Sierra de la Laguna Mountains in San Jose del Cabo, Mexico. Home to Flora’s Field Kitchen, The Farm Bar, Flora Farms Grocery, and Flora Farms Celebrations. The farm is also home to the Shoppes at Flora Farms, the Culinary Cottages & The Haylofts, (their hand-built, straw bale luxury homes for the culinary-inclined), as well as The Farm Spa, an intimate spa and wellness experience achieved through nature-based spa services, in a supremely peaceful setting.

Flora’s Field kitchen is about handmade food using their farm-fresh ingredients. Their goal is to create a healthy family meal with a sense of place.

The original Flora Restaurant was in San Jose del Cabo. After 5 years in town, and the farm serving as the main provider for the restaurant, the owner decided she would rather bring the restaurant to the farm instead of the other way around. Flora’s Field Kitchen strives to only serve what they make, raise and grow.

Their menu is seasonal, with some permanent classics. All meats served at Flora’s Field Kitchen come from their nearby 150-acre ranch where animals are humanely raised on diets that do not include hormones or antibiotics - and they do not offer beef on the menu as it is not sustainable as there is not enough water in Baja.

We started out with a couple of the house specialty margaritas. Michael had the Citrus, while I had the Hibiscus. Both were simply wonderful.

To start, Michael and I shared the Burratta bruschetta, beet salad with goat cheese, and tuna stack in a mango sauce. I cannot give a full description of all the ingredients as I don't fully remember, and they don't have their menu online since it changes all the time.

For our entrees, Michael had the pork shoulder and I continued to work on the starters. We followed it up with key lime pie and carrot cake.

Suffice it to say that I could easily run out of adjectives to describe how delightful not only the food was, but the entire experience. From wandering through the farm ahead of time to just the whole vibe of the property, Flora Farms is a place that will always be one of my stops when I'm in Cabo.

 

 

For more on Flora Farms, click here.

Flora Farms

Animas Bajas, San Jose del Cabo, Baja California Sur, Mx.

Mexico Phone # (+52.624) 142.1000 / 142.1458

US Phone #: 949.200.7342

Email: reservations@flora-farms.com


OPERATING HOURS

Tuesday thru Saturday:

Breakfast 9:00 to 10:30 am

Lunch 11:00 am to 2:00 pm

Dinner 5:00 - 9:00 pm

Sunday Brunch

From 10:00 am to 2:00 pm

Dining Around the Desert: TQLAS in Old Town La Quinta

TQLAS  is a Mexican Restaurant and Agave Bar specializing in Tequila and Mezcal craft cocktails, and traditional, fresh Mexican food.  They offer 75+ Tequilas and 20+ Mezcals;  all the Tequilas are 100% Agave.  All of their drinks are served in beautiful handblown glasses from Guadalajara.

They combine the best of Mexico through their food, drink, and colorful Mexican Art... The  large handmade metal “Katrinas” at the entrance will welcome you to a delightful experience.  The indoor dining room takes you to the artful experience of Coyoacan; dine or just have drinks on the patio under the hand-made lighted stars sipping a “Cazuela” and you’ll be transported to Tlaquapaque...The bar transports you to Agave bars found throughout Mexico with more colorful art as well as big screen TV's to enjoy watching your favorite sport.

We were a few minutes early so we went to the bar where Michael ordered a Cadillac Margarita and I had a Mistico which is El Tesoro Anejo Tequila, Prickly Pear Puree, Agave nectar, and lime juice. Very tart and very refreshing. They have a lot of TV's around the room which made for good viewing for future sports events.

A few minutes later, we were shown to our table outside on the patio. The entire staff wears masks, as do any guests upon entering. Once you are seated, you may remove your mask.

We started out with Homemade Jalapeno Poppers which were really good. Just the right amount of heat cooled off by the Blue cheese dipping sauce.

For our entrees, Michael had the Conchinita Pibil. Pork shoulder marinated 24 hours & cooked in a citrus & Achiote (an earthy, peppery Mexican spice) served with rice and beans. It had a nice bit of sweetness to it and the beans were great.

I had the Shrimp Diabla. Grilled Shrimp with a spicy red sauce served with veggies and rice. The shrimp was cooked perfectly and the sauce was flavorful but not too spicy. The veggies were overcooked so next time I'd ask for beans instead.

The service was personable, quick, and efficient. Since the restaurant had just opened right when the pandemic hit, it really hasn't had a chance to operate under "normal" circumstances. All and all it's a welcome addition to Old Town La Quinta and we'll be back!

Click here to go to the website

78015 Main St. Suite 109

La Quinta, CA 9253

(442) 256-4059

Open Daily 12 PM to 9 PM

Closed Tuesdays

Dining Around the Desert: Pueblo Viejo Grill in Indio & Palm Desert

I’ve written about Pueblo Viejo Grill in the past, as it’s our favorite Mexican Food place in the desert. Both Indio and Palm Desert are equally good. Since the restaurants here are just starting to open, we picked Pueblo Viejo in Indio as our first venture out into the new world of dining out during a pandemic.

One of the upsides is that they are taking reservations for the extremely limited seating, whereas in the past unless you are a party of 6 or more, there was no way to guarantee a table. We would normally sit at the bar, but right now there is no bar seating being allowed.

We were seated immediately at a booth, were greeted right away by our server, and asked if we’d like a drink. You have the option of using the regular menus or scanning the code on a posted sign at your table and seeing the menu on your phone. The entire staff wears masks, as do any guests upon entering. Once you are seated, you may remove your mask.

As usual, the food was wonderful. My go-to is the Taco Salad with Chicken and Michael likes the Salmon Fajitas. We both agreed that they were probably the best we’ve ever had. The Cadillac Margaritas were not bad either!

A nice bonus is that it’s pretty rare that I go out to dinner and don’t run into a friend or client. In this case, purely by chance, a brand new client who had just flown into town to see homes with my team member Adam Cheng walked in with his friends and was seated at one of the other tables. The next day we opened escrow on a beautiful new home in Andalusia!

Click here to go to the website

81931 US Highway 111 (4.20 mi)
Indio, California 92201

Get Directions

(760) 342-5900

Call for hours

Dining Around the Desert: Okura in La Quinta

About Okura Robata Grill & Sushi Bar

Located in La Quinta, Okura offers a unique style, inventive specialties, and focuses on fresh ingredients. Over the years, Okura has become a local phenomenon, winning first place in The Desert Sun’s “Best of The Valley” award in the Japanese restaurant category for over 8 years.

Okura’s menu spans a wide range of delectable options, from unique appetizers to classic Japanese sushi to delicious Robata Grill entrees, including succulent Kobe steaks. Okura serves only the freshest selection of raw fish and seafood, delicately and skillfully prepared by master sushi chefs.

Okura cultivates an atmosphere that is both soothing and lively. The subdued lighting makes each dining experience feel intimate, while vibrant music selections create a convivial ambiance. They are especially proud to offer a large selection of sake to pair beautifully with their menu items – ask them for a recommendation!

Okura just moved across the Point Happy parking lot to the site of the old Las Casuelas on the corner of Washington and HWY 111. After months of renovations, we are pleased to report that they did an excellent job. You wouldn’t know it was the same place. One of the highlights is a huge tree in the center of the dining room that has changing lights, surrounded by a really cool fixture (in the above photo), that creates a very elegant feel.

Four of us enjoyed dinner there a couple of weeks ago. We ordered a lot of food, and all of it was delicious. The service was spot-on, and we can’t wait to go back.

One of the biggest challenges is just figuring out what to order. We started with Edamame and then headed straight to a selection of specialty rolls and sushi.

We shared the Lemon Delight, Protein, Volcano, The Madonna, and Hamachi Jalapeño. Deb and I had a favorite in the Lemon Delight, the guys like the Protein and Hamachi Jalapeño best. I actually think there was one more item we shared, but I can’t remember! It was all really great.

Of course, Okura has Sake, Beer, Wine, and a surprising amount of specialty cocktails.

Overall, we are happy to see them in a new, larger, space that has a really nice ambiance. We’ll be back!

Location:

78480 Hwy 111
La Quinta, CA  92253
Phone: (760) 564-5820

Hours:

Sunday - Thursday: 4 - 9:30 pm
Friday - Saturday: 4 - 10 pm

 

Visit Okura online… and on Facebook…

Dining Around the Desert: Wildest in Palm Desert

Palm Desert’s newest hot spot is Wildest Restaurant + Bar.

Michael and I attended Wildest’s grand opening about a month ago, and we revisited it along with team members Betsy and Adam this past week.

WILDEST’S DYNAMIC FOOD originates in wild-caught fish, local pasture-raised and grass-fed poultry and beef, as well as plant-based meals that promise to be flavorful options to those who choose to eat meat-free. There are zero hormones and steroids in their proteins, as the restaurant strives to be cruelty-free and supports local organic, biodynamic and sustainable farms. Provisions not made in-house will be sourced from the coolest epicureans.

We enjoyed the Crispy Cauliflower Florets with coconut milk ranch and buffalo sauce for a starter.

Betsy had the Jackfruit Chile Relleno with vegan cheese, enchilada sauce, and black beans. It had a nice kick to it, and we all agreed that we’d order that in the future.

Adam had the Pan Roasted King Salmon with shaved Brussel sprouts, wheat berries, and a walnut-garlic sauce. The fish was perfectly cooked, as were the sprouts.

I went for the Grilled Moroccan Pasturebird Chicken with two quinoa vegetable salad, rosemary, and cold-pressed apple. The chicken was super tender, and the quinoa was delish.

Michael decided to try his first Roasted Plant-Based Chicken with roasted sweet potato puree, wild mushroom sauce, Brussel sprouts, and cranberries. The veggies were great, and the “chicken” was interesting.

We all partook of libations, Old Fashioneds, and red wine. They have an extensive wine list with something for everyone.

Overall, we all really liked the space, with the open kitchen, bar, and dining areas. The food was delightful and tasty, and it’s nice to have a new place to enjoy that supports local farms. We’ll all be back soon.

For more information, menus, and reservations, click here…

 

Dining Around the Desert: Eddie V’s in Palm Desert

I promised you back in August that when the Palm Desert Eddie V’s opened, we’d do a review, and we are so happy to report that this much-anticipated addition to the desert dining scene does not disappoint.

Michael and I were invited to the soft opening a couple of days prior to Thanksgiving, and everything from the greeting from the hostess to the wait staff to the food and wine was top-notch. As this was the staff basically practicing on us, I’d say the training is excellent, which is not something you can say these days about too many restaurants.

We both started with the Crab and Corn Chowder featuring Lump Crab, Smoked Bacon and Sweet Corn. I could honestly eat that chowder every day, it was that good. Michael had one of their special Smoked Manhattan’s which was an excellent cocktail, with an impressive presentation to boot.

Michael enjoyed the 22 OZ USDA Prime Bone-In Ribeye, and I had the Georges Bank Scallops, Sautéed with Citrus Fruit, Roasted Almonds and Brown Butter. As a side, we had the Crab Fried Rice with Mushrooms and Scallions. Dessert was the Dark Chocolate and Crushed Toffee S’Mores with Toasted Homemade Marshmallow.

In talking to a lot of friends that have also been in the past month, everyone has reported an excellent experience. We look forward to making it one of our regular stops.

  

PALM DESERT

73040 El Paseo
Palm Desert, CA  92260
(760) 340-9455

Read about Eddie V’s, directions, menu, and reservations….

Dining Around the Desert: RD RNNR in La Quinta

RD RNNR is the newest restaurant to open in Old Town La Quinta. Located in the old Solano’s space, which has been opened up a bit, brightened up a lot, and televisions added to the main dining room, it’s a nice addition to La Quinta.

I was greeted at the door by the host Chris, who I know from Melange, The Grill, and AC3. Turns out his wife is the owner of RD RNNR.

My friend Leslie and I sat at a high-top in the bar which is my preferred place to be. That seems to be the case with a lot of patrons, but the bar is pretty small. That’s the reason for the televisions and more casual feel to the dining room now.

The menu has a good variety of items ranging from Lamb Chili, Ahi Tuna Nachos, Huevos Diablos, Cali Toast and Cooked Dirty Fries for starters amongst others.

There are eight different salads from Watermelon & Tomato Caprese to Pavo Taco Salad. They all sound interesting.

Under GRAZING ALL DAY you’ll find Black & Blue Fin Tuna, Charcoal Angus RD Burger, Shrimp & Grits, to Grilled Cheese.

You’ll also find Scallops & Prawns, Brick Chicken, Flat Iron Steak and Atlantic Salmon.

Prices range from $6 - $25.

 

 

We enjoyed the MAC & WHAAAT as a starter. It’s jalapeño and cauliflower mac & cheese featuring smoked gouda, white cheddar, parmesan, and RNNR Dust. I expected it to be a pasta made of cauliflower, but instead it was actually cauliflower chunks covered in the delicious sauce. We finished off every drop.

Leslie had a BUILD YOUR OWN meal where she picked Grilled Salmon with Roasted Mixed Vegetables and Quinoa. It was a generous portion and she took half home.

I enjoyed THE CHEESY DATE salad under the FORAGING FOR GREENS. Made of Burrata cheese, Coachella dates, organic arugula, tomatoes, fresh basil, and a date vinaigrette dressing.

I didn’t see any desserts, but next time I’ll be asking about that.

RD RNNR has a nice selection of beer, wine, hard cider, mocktails, and specialty cocktails.

Leslie and I stuck to a rose and red wine. Both were nice and priced well.

Unfortunately, I didn’t take any photos, so you’ll have to wait til I go back again for that. Or better yet, go on by and check it out for yourself.

Monday - Friday 11:30 am to 9 pm and Saturday, Sunday 10 am to 9 pm
*HAPPY HOUR*
Everyday 2 - 6

https://www.facebook.com/roadrunnerlq/

78075 MAIN ST, Unit 105
La Quinta, California 92253-8961

Get Directions

Dining Around the Desert: 4 Saints at the Kimpton Rowan Hotel in Palm Springs

On a recent weekend in October, Michael and I stayed at the Rowan Hotel and enjoyed several meals and cocktails. As the Coachella Valley’s only rooftop venue, 4 Saints offers a variety of different atmospheres, from the intimate lounge to the outdoor patio bar.

The highlight was dinner at 4 Saints, the fine dining option at the hotel.

As the highest restaurant in Palm Springs, 4 Saints raises the bar — literally — on desert dining. Perched on the seventh floor of the Kimpton Rowan Hotel, the rooftop restaurant showcases clever cocktails and the global cuisine, set against a backdrop of 270-degree valley views.

4 Saints’ beverage menu, with its creative cocktails, local brews and thoughtfully curated wine list, is designed to complement their seasonal menus of snacks, small plates and shareable entrees.

We started with the Pristine Oysters on the Half Shell with a Shallot Vinaigrette which were delicate and delicious. I then had the Seared Firecracker Tuna with Springtime Sprouts, Black Garlic and Chili Oil and the Crispy Spanish Octopus with Minted Peas, Blue Potato Salad, Yuzu, and Greens. The tuna was like butter, flavorful, spicy and perfectly seared. My favorite was the Octopus. Cooked to perfection, and the peas were like a taste of Spring.

Michael had the Fish in the Forest which was Steelhead Salmon, Spring Vegetables, Cedar, and Smoking Wild Juniper. He said that it was some of the best salmon he’d ever had.

I tried to resist, but Michael ordered The Four Sinners for dessert which is a Chocolate Cake with Ganache, Espresso Cream, and Mascarpone Mousse. Even with all that chocolate, it wasn’t too sweet and was wonderfully moist and decadent.

We enjoyed the hotel’s spacious guest rooms, gym, poolside lounge and the eating venues. All in all it’s a great addition to the Coachella Valley.

HOURS

Dinner: Sunday-Thursday 5:30pm - 10pm
Friday-Saturday 5:30pm - 11pm

Brunch: Saturday-Sunday 9am - 3pm
Bar: Sunday-Thursday 3pm - 11pm
Friday-Saturday 3pm - 12am

CONTACT

100 W Tahquitz Canyon Way, Palm Springs, CA 92262
MAP & DIRECTIONS
Phone:  760.392.2020
MAKE A RESERVATION

monthly newsletter sign up