Fuss-Free Feasts

Enjoy a delectable Thanksgiving meal without lifting a finger

Carolyn Patten Restaurants 0 Comments


In the Coachella Valley, it’s as easy as pumpkin pie to enjoy a perfect Thanksgiving Day dinner without turning on the oven. Dress up for an elegant meal in sophisticated surroundings, round up the kids for a casual feast, head for a grand buffet, or pick up dinner to savor at home.  


Fine Dining

Copley’s: Start your holiday meal with goat cheese ravioli drizzled with pumpkin purée, roasted tomato, fennel relish, and cabernet butter sauce. Savor your free-range turkey or Scottish salmon with a view of the San Jacinto Mountains from Cary Grant’s former estate, and finish with the dessert sampler and a fine after-dinner cordial. 621 N. Palm Canyon Dr., Palm Springs. 760-327-9555; www.copleyspalmsprings.com

Le Vallauris: The go-to choice for “old Palm Springs” glamour and exquisite service, this romantic restaurant offers table service with a choice of several appetizers, entrées, and desserts, including ahi tuna tartare, roasted California turkey, Maine lobster ravioli, and pumpkin cheesecake with caramel. Reservations are accepted through 10:30 p.m. 385 W. Tahquitz Canyon Way, Palm Springs. 760-325-5059; www.levallauris.com

Europa Restaurant at the Villa Royale Inn: Rolled stuffed turkey breast is the star of brunch, which also includes favorites such as braised short ribs bourguignon with roasted mushrooms, pancetta, and Yukon gold mashed potatoes. Try the Royale flourless chocolate torte, filled with molten ganache and topped with vanilla bean gelato. 1620 S. Indian Tr., Palm Springs. 760-327-2314; www.villaroyale.com

Spencer’s: Prepare to be pampered with attentive service, chic surroundings, and sumptuous cuisine. The three-course special includes your choice of starters, plus turkey, beef, chicken, fish, and vegetarian entrées, two sides, and traditional desserts. 701 W. Baristo Rd., Palm Springs. 760-327-3446; www.spencersrestaurant.com



Pines Café at the Palm Springs Aerial Tramway: On Thanksgiving, everything in this cafeteria-style eatery is themed for the holiday, including roast turkey, dressing and gravy, green beans and yams, pumpkin pie, and whipped cream. The tram opens at 8 a.m. on Thanksgiving, and a special Ride-n-Dine package combines the ride up with a meal at the Pines. One Tram Way, Palm Springs. 760-325-1391; www.pstramway.com

Elmer’s: You could eat Thanksgiving dinner every day of the year here, and it’s a reliable, satisfying meal, with roast turkey breast, Yukon gold potatoes, stuffing, gravy, cranberries, and seasonal veggies. 1030 E. Palm Canyon Dr., Palm Springs. 760-327-8419; www.eatatelmers.com


Endless Buffets

Hyatt Regency Indian Wells Resort & Spa: The Lantana lobby will be decked out in fall décor and laden with a buffet that features shrimp, deli meats and cheeses, fresh-baked breads, local vegetables, carved turkey roasted with maple and thyme, prime rib, and an elaborate selection of pies, pastries, and truffles. Come hungry. 44600 Indian Wells Ln., Indian Wells. 760-341-1000; www.indianwells.hyatt.com

Agua Caliente Casino Resort Spa: True to the tradition of sumptuous casino buffets, this spot features traditional turkey-and-trimmings choices, along with entrées of beef, chicken, and fish, and a huge selection of sides and desserts. 32250 Bob Hope Dr., Rancho Mirage. 888-999-1995; www.hotwatercasino.com


To Go

Manhattan in the Desert: From a couple of meals to a whole turkey with traditional trimmings and side dishes, order ahead and take it home to your own table. Add a tasty extra, such as the rich New York–style cheesecake or jumbo cinnamon rolls. 2665 E. Palm Canyon Dr., Palm Springs. 760-322-3354; www.manhattaninthedesert.com

Lulu California Bistro and Acqua Pazza: These sister restaurants offer three-course Thanksgiving meals for takeout, delivery, or dining in. You’ll also find delicious gluten-free and vegetarian items, such as flourless triple chocolate cake or quinoa-stuffed acorn squash. Lulu, 200 S. Palm Canyon Dr., Palm Springs. 760-327-5858; www.lulupalmsprings.com. Acqua Pazza, 71800 Hwy. 111, Rancho Mirage. 760-862-9800; www.acquapazzabistro.com

Mimi’s Café: Mimi’s serves Thanksgiving-style turkey dinners all year round, so they’ve got some experience in turning out yummy dishes for the big day. The turkey dinner comes with mashed potatoes, gravy, cornbread dressing, seasonal vegetables, and orange-apple cranberry relish. Check out the menu online for desserts and more sides. 71861 Hwy. 111, Rancho Mirage. 760-836-3905; www.mimiscafe.com

Sherman’s: Order and pick up your entire Thanksgiving dinner at either location. Add a spicy pumpkin pie or one of their towering cakes — the chocolate mousse/cheesecake, Black Forest with dark cherry filling, and tangy lemon dome are favorites. 73161 Country Club Dr., Palm Desert. 760-568-1350. 401 E. Tahquitz Canyon Way, Palm Springs. 760-325-1199; www.shermansdeli.com

TRIO: This is a great people-watching spot, and it’s spot-on with delivery and pickup. Thanksgiving comfort foods, as well as perennial favorites — St. Louis–style spare ribs, roast chicken, and mac and cheese — are all available to savor
at home. 707 N. Palm Canyon Dr., Palm Springs. 760-864-8746; www.triopalmsprings.com

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