Thursday, April 1, 2010

Festival of Food and Wine During Fashion Week

Every year on El Paseo in Palm Desert, Palm Springs Life Magazine throws Fashion Week to introduce the community to new designers, new lines, and a barrage of after-parties with the cultural freaks. This year they introduced a new weekend full of food and wine events in conjunction with the week where famous valley restaurants and chefs appeared to showcase their signature fare as well as a bevy of local and non-local wineries who offered generous tastings throughout the day. Below is some unabashed promotion about some of the food highlights of the day and the talented people behind them!

The Riviera Resort's sticky, hot toffee cake was out of this world. Chewy, rich, sweet and carmelized gooey goodness. I usually don't eat in the Riviera's Restaurant because it is way to expensive for the kind of normal, basic food that is prepared but I spend lots of time in the Side Bar with the black and white checkered floor when out of town guests come for a quick drink and I will certainly be adding this exquisite concoction to my order list while enjoying martinis with friends in the after dinner hours.

My friend Hugh immediately pointed me in the direction of the Old Town Temecula Olive Oil Company who had a table set up with my favorite thing: skinny french bread loaves and a variety of olive oil/balsamic vinegar duos in small plastic cups. Upon dipping and tasting, I walked away enthralled most by the creative pairings of flavors this company produces like the citrus-infused olive oil with the vanilla and fig balsamic vinegar.

Tropicale Restaurant is already one of my favorite restaurants in Palm Springs just based on their filet mignon salad alone but I was extra delighted to see my second favorite menu item, the red velvet cake, given out to festival goers in a cute, sprinkle-topped cupcake form!

Peppers Thai, a Palm Springs-based restaurant, caught my eye with their fresh, tofu spring rolls which were undoubtedly the freshest and most flavorful I have had in the desert yet. Not sure I can jump off the track of loyalty towards Thai Smile and Le Basil (my ultimate favorite valley thai restaurants) but these rolls could be something I specifically quest after often.

Lobster and asparagus cream soup from Sullivan's was cold, satisfying and rich enough to sate in just a small amount. Paired with the restaurant's famous blue cheese wedge would be my choice for future meetings with this luscious soup.

Zin American Bistro's asparagus omelette bites and grilled citrus shrimp were my favorite pick of the day. Eggy and spiked with sharp parmesan, these bites made me want to have breakfast for dinner everyday!

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