French Miso Cafe - Palm Springs, CA - 5 Golden Spoons

I had been hearing rumblings around town about this fantastic new French Japanese Restaurant that was only open for breakfast and lunch.  I must admit, I was skeptical of the incredible rave reviews until we decided to pop in this past week for lunch.  Hidden away in a little garden area at the Plaza in downtown Palm Springs, the setting is adorable, inside and out and reminiscent of a garden restaurant in the South of France.  Upon arrival, we were greeted by one of the owners, Tomoko Jones, who was quick to introduce herself and welcome us to French Miso Café.  She escorted us to a quaint table in a bungalowesque dining area.  We were presented with a short menu of the days specials which all sounded marvelous.  We had a hard time choosing, but our charming server helped us make decisions.  I chose the Grilled Atlantic Salmon, my husband decided on the Chicken Paillard.  When the dishes arrived, we were taken back by the artistic plating with exceptional detail.The salmon was served with local figs, peaches and blackberries with a roasted sesame dressing.  The ample salmon filet was crisp, but delightfully moist and it was complemented perfectly by the fruit mélange with balsamic swirls.  Gorgeous. The chicken was flattened and grilled, served with romaine lettuce and Caesar dressing with rustic home made croutons.   A simple dish, but the perfect blend of texture and taste.  Delightful.  Tomoko suggested we end our lunch with the passion fruit crème brulee.  Creamy and bright with just the right amount of burnt sugar crust.  Stunning.  Can you tell we were impressed?  We can’t wait for our next visit so we can explore the rest of the menu.

Le Vallauris - Palm Springs, CA - 5+ Golden Spoons!

On my top 5 list of restaurants in the world, Le Vallauris continues to exceed expectations!  After it’s usual Summer closure, I’ve been counting the days until the opening this season.  With a new menu inspired by the owners’ latest travels, I was excited to find many new exotic dishes to explore, along with many classic favorites I’ve enjoyed for years.  But first, the ambiance. My husband and I sat at our favorite table outside on the patio, one of the most gorgeous and romantic settings one can imagine. As always, we were greeted by the exceptionally warm and friendly staff including our server for the evening, Chris, who was charming, engaging, and extremely knowledgeable of the new menu.  She reviewed items on the tableside “chalk board” and helped us make decisions.  We began with the tomato and goat cheese tartine.  A delicate puff pastry with a sharp and sweet mousse that brought the roasted cherry tomatoes to life.  Spectacular.  We also enjoyed a new seafood “salad” dish with chilled mussels, clams, and scallops presented with beets, avocados and a strip of nori with dashes of wasabi.  The artistic presentation was stunning, and the seafood was vibrant, fresh, and bright. We followed two different lobster dishes as our main courses; the sautéed Maine lobster in vanilla butter with corn lobster bisque and the Maine lobster salad with passion fruit, asparagus, avocado, and baby frisee.  The plentiful portions of lobster in each dish were tender and bright and perfectly prepared and plated.  We couldn’t decide which we enjoyed most and actually subtly switched plates mid-course.  Desserts at Le Vallauris are equally sumptuous.  Favorites include the Tahitian vanilla crème brulee and the chocolate praline tarte with white chocolate raspberry swirl gelato.  For an extravagant, delicious, memorable evening, Le Vallauris delivers on all levels. 

HEXX - Las Vegas, NV - 4 1/2 Golden Spoons

While we've stayed at Paris many times, this was our first experience at HEXX.  What a find.  An extensive menu perfect for a quick bite but also fit for foodies.  The pepperoni pizza is fantastic as a simple dish or try the mussels and scallops for a more sophisticated main course!We ordered multiple selections off the menu and all were sensational including the cheesy garlic bread which is actually stuffed with warm ricotta cheese and the flatbread carpaccio with roasted tomatoes, red onions and arugula.  Notable fantastic service too!  Our waiter, Kevin Smith, was attentive, engaging, and extremely knowledgeable.  Made the whole evening memorable.  On top of that, the restaurant's GM visited our table.  We will be back every time we visit Las Vegas!  That says it all.  

Tropicale - Palm Springs, CA - 5 Golden Spoons

The headline says it all! The Tropicale is on my Top 5 list of must-visit restaurants in Southern California. A fantastic vibrant bar scene, a lush tropical outdoor patio, and an elegant indoor dining room. The Tropicale has it all. Frequented by locals and visitors alike, this place not only boasts exceptional service, but a spectacular Pacific Rim inspired menu, as well. I’ve been a regular patron of this restaurant for years and The Tropicale has consistently delivered wonderful memorable experiences and the biggest and best martinis in the Coachella Valley! This visit, I was accompanied by a group of friends visiting from Europe who share my enthusiasm and appreciation for great cuisine. We decided to explore a number of selections from the menu to be shared family-style. Each dish was perfectly presented and delightfully delicious. Favorite appetizers included the Tangerine-Glazed Calamari with green peppers, ginger, and mandarin oranges, the Hawaiian-Style Poke on Taro Root Chips with pineapple pepper slaw and a chile soy vinaigrette, and the Chili-Rubbed Shrimp Tacos with Chipotle Cream. Yum!!! My guests were impressed. For our main courses, we had to have the restaurant’s signature Crispy Boneless Southern Fried Chicken, which was marinated in buttermilk and paprika and served with corn mashed potatoes, and buttered collard greens. The light crunchy batter was masterfully spiced, and the traditional sides added to the authenticity of this dish. We also enjoyed the Vietnamese Caramel Pork Chop which was served tomahawk style, with cilantro and chili sticky rice, and gai lin broccoli. Another phenomenal dish from The Tropicale! Finally, the adventurous dessert menu is not to be overlooked. The Elephant Cheesecake with peanut butter cream, chocolate ganache, and chocolate shortbread is a must and the Green Apple Pie with white cheddar crust and vanilla bean gelato is a creative interpretation of an American classic. So, if you’re looking to impress a group of friends or just to enjoy a nice romantic dinner, you really can’t go wrong with The Tropicale 

Mon Ami Gabi - Las Vegas, NV - 5 Golden Spoons

Edit Post TextMon Ami Gabi is on our must-visit list every time we are in Las Vegas.  You really can’t beat the exceptional cuisine, service, and value.  Some of our dinner menu favorites include the Escargot, the Steak Tartare, the Skate Wing, and the Dover Sole.  For dessert, the cheesecake with caramel sauce is absolutely delicious.Lunch is quite outstanding, as well.  Delectable crepes and salads.  And…if you are lucky enough to be served by waiter Steve Lavelle, you are in for a treat.  He is one of the most attentive, engaging, knowledgeable waiters we’ve every encountered.  We always request his station when we make reservations.  If Steve is not available, Jeremy does an excellent job as well!!

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 jim@foodtodish.com
888-942-4274 ext. 701

Palm Springs, California

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