November 2011 Bites

This fall, Kaiser Grille in Palm Springs underwent a major makeover including pizzas baked in a wood-fired oven.

By Arthur Coleman

Dim Sum Anyone?
Culinary delicacies laced with ginger and garlic. Spicy pork buns. Savory spareribs. Shrimp dumplings. Flower scallions. Har Gau. Taro. Shu Mai. These are just some of the adventurous dishes Palm Desert’s Legacy Chinese Cuisine serves as part of their daily dim sum menu, available from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Located next to Starbucks at Highway 111 and Highway 74, the restaurant opened its doors this summer and is sister to Legacy Thai in La Quinta, which opened last November. “We bring the best of both our cultures — Chinese and Thai — to our two restaurants,” says master Asian chef Chai Butrlakorn, who started the restaurants with his wife Ally. “We believe that the desert is ready for authentic modern Asian cuisine with the freshest quality, made-to-order gourmet dishes without the gourmet price.”

For the uninitiated, dim sum literally means “to touch your heart” and is very popular in the Chinatowns of San Francisco, Los Angeles, and New York. Some gourmands believe that dim sum inspired the concept of brunch, combining breakfast with a mid-morning meal.

“We expect that our dim sum will soon become a tradition on Sunday as one of the best places to go for brunch,” Butrlakorn says. Usually one orders lighter steamed dishes first, then more exotic dishes, and finally desserts, he advises.

Legacy Chinese Cuisine, 73030 El Paseo, Ste. 102, Palm Desert. 1-760-776-6610

Unlimited Lusciousness
If you believe that more is better when it comes to dining options and portions, make a beeline to Emperor Buffet, a family restaurant located in Rancho Mirage that serves an all-you-can-eat buffet for both lunch and dinner. Indulge in an array of dishes, including shrimp, fruit, desserts, unlimited fresh sushi, and traditional Chinese stir-fry — all for less than $10, seven days a week. 69600 Hwy. 111, Rancho Mirage. 1-760-328-9200;

Kaiser Recreated
This fall, Kaiser Grille underwent a major makeover, creating a new vibe to complement its contemporary cuisine, including sustainable meats, fresh vegetables, and pizzas baked in a wood-fired oven. The bright, warm, and welcoming renovation includes a reduced interior seating area and an expanded alfresco patio to maximize guest comfort. Enhancements involved relocating and expanding the bar, upgrading the front and side patios with sofas and a fire pit, and changing the color scheme with colorful tiles, warm woods, and rare quartz.“We are very excited about Kaiser Grille’s new, modern look and feel,” says Lee Morcus, CEO of the locally owned Kaiser Restaurant Group. “The vibe is different, and we’re already getting positive feedback from locals who have popped in during the renovation to check it out.”

Executive Chef Didier Tsirony updated Kaiser Grille’s menus and added a weekend brunch from 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m., offering Belgian waffles with roasted chopped hazelnuts and a warm hazelnut chocolate sauce with Chantilly whipped cream; house-made hashes served with a poached egg, Hollandaise, and brioche toast; three egg omelets; and house-made Kaiser muesli. 205 S. Palm Canyon Dr., Palm Springs. 1-760-323-1003;

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