There’s a buzz around these Palm Springs restaurants, from new hot spots to old favorites.

Boozehounds Palm Springs
Thomas J. Story
Boozehounds Palm Springs

It’s that time of year. (Well, for the first time after a long, pandemic-induced break.) The Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival is back for two weekends in the California desert, taking place this weekend and next at the Empire Polo Club. Harry Styles, Billie Eilish, and Swedish House Mafia with The Weeknd headline this year’s festivities, which will also feature plenty of large-scale art installations and an array of food and beverage vendors.

If you’re heading out to the desert this weekend—or you’re looking to do a bit of sightseeing throughout the day before you head to the polo fields for each night’s big act—we’ve got you covered. Just over a half-hour from the festival grounds, Palm Springs is brimming with new restaurants, bars, and coffee shops worth checking out.

Boozehounds Palm Springs
Boozehounds Palm Springs

Thomas J. Story

The hottest ticket in town right now is Bar Cecil, a chic restaurant down at the southern end of the city. Executive chef Gabriel Woo (a Palm Springs local whose food you might have encountered at the nearby Sparrows Lodge and Holiday House hotels) is behind this colorful homage to Cecil Beaton, where you can order $100 Regiis Ova Ossetra Caviar by Thomas Keller. You’d best make a reservation now if you’re hoping to get in this month.

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There are plenty of old favorites on this list, too, simply because they’re tried and true. Wherever you’re noshing this month, make sure you tip your waiters and valet drivers, who have been working throughout the pandemic to allow you to experience all the desert has to offer. And with that, here are some of the hottest restaurants we’ve got our eye on in Palm Springs.

4 Saints

Executive Chef Ysaac Ramirez recently took the helm of this rooftop restaurant at Kimpton Rowan Palm Springs, where you can expect Latin influences on Southern comfort food. Think branzino with poblano crema, and brioche lobster roll with paddlefish caviar.

Bar Cecil

Dive into the deviled eggs and caramelized onion tart at this romantic spot before finishing with pasta. If you’re so bold, order the The Fifty Dollar Martini.


This pet-friendly restaurant with an expansive outdoor patio is the perfect perch for your pooch. The decor is surprisingly elegant but the type of midcentury modern vibes for which the city is known. Executive Chef Aric Ianni dishes up adobo chicken and galbi-braised short rib, plus the aptly named “vegan dog” with fries.  

Cafe La Jefa

You’ll find Sisters, Oregon-roasted beans at Erika and Mike Flannery’s coffee shop, where pastries and buttermilk biscuits abound. You can also grab a salad or wrap to go.

Chef Tanya’s Kitchen

This vegan outpost is a must-visit for those who want a plant-based option. The Modern Hippie Veggie with the house special “crack cheese” is a favorite, as is the Chupacabra Chick’n with seitan filets. Don’t forget to sip some agua fresca!

French Miso Cafe

Picture this: You’re in the mood for Japanese food. Your partner wants French. This cafe offers both, thanks to the dynamic duo of chef Eric Bovy (who’s from France) and front-of-house manager Tomoko Jones, who’s from Japan. Everything is good here, from the steak frites to bento boxes with sockeye shiojake salmon.

The Heydey

Head to the Hilton for cheesy burgers and fried chicken sandos from this former pop-up turned restaurant. You can chow down Wednesday through Sunday at the hotel.

Rooster and the Pig

While not relatively new, this Vietnamese-American hot spot remains a must-visit for good reason. It’s worth getting every dish to share, from the jasmine tea leaf salad to the shaking beef. The restaurant is cashless, so bring a card!

Workshop Kitchen and Bar

A longstanding staple of downtown Palm Springs, this restaurant is worth a splurge for date night or a special dinner inside the James Beard Award-winning space. There’s also an expansive patio where you’ll love dining on cool nights.