Eating in Palm Springs can be a repetitive nightmare of bad buffets and tired steakhouses. It can also be a brightly colored panorama of flavor and spice. If you know where to go, you can save on spending an absurd amount on a meal as well.
Nina’s Pita and Pizza is a good bet if you want to spend less and still get some good eats. Featuring pretty authentic Greek food for a fraction of the cost of many dinners in town, this smaller family restaurant is an excellent spot for family or just for a relaxing meal. The gyro meat is shaved off the rotating spit, just as it should be , and the tzatziki sauce alone is worth the visit. The options ranging from cheese pizza to stuffed grape leaves mean there’s something for everyone, too.
Another choice spot is The Cowboy Way, a barbecue joint with simple decor and a long wooden counter as its main seating area. That’s okay, though, because the two huge smokers outside are where the magic is happening. The menu is basic, with a few different barbecue meat options (tri-tip, chicken, and of course ribs) and a choice of sides (mac and cheese, potato salad, etc). The meat is tender, the sauce is tangy, and the drinks are served in canning jars with free refills – perfect for washing it all down.
Best breakfast can be found at Cheeky’s, where the menu focuses on that oh-so-necessary morning staple: bacon. There are multiple sweet and savory variations on the thick slabs of pork belly at Cheeky’s. If you want to try them all, that’s no problemo – there’s even a bacon flight where you can get a slice of 5 or 6 different flavors. The other dishes on the menu, both for breakfast/brunch and for later meals, have equally tantalizing unique takes on traditional dishes. Think corn and blueberry pancakes and peach and ginger waffles, accompanied with fresh-squeezed juice and homemade pork sausage. And more bacon, no doubt.
Quicker breakfast and sandwiches can be grabbed at Koffi. This is probably the best coffee and espresso place in town, and is the perfect alternative to a weak cup of hotel java. Coffee and ingredients are generally fair trade, organic, etc., and there are some less typical flavors on the menu like the excellent raspberry latte. Scones, muffins, etc also are made with organic ingredients and are baked fresh. Grab a sandwich for a picnic lunch and you’re set for the day.
[photo courtesy of SanFranAnnie]