Florencio and Mary Delgado opened the original Las Casuelas in Palm Springs in 1958, bringing authentic Mexican flavors — recipes passed down from Florencio’s grandmother, Maria Fajardo Delgado, of Mazatlán — to their intimate family restaurant.
Sixty-five years later, Maria’s Sinaloan-inspired dishes and the company name live on at multiple restaurants in the Coachella Valley operated by their grandchildren including Las Casuelas Nuevas in Rancho Mirage, which fêtes its 50th anniversary in April.
The Rancho Mirage location, open since 1973, has been run by the next two generations of the Delgado family. With its hacienda architecture and authentic design — large tabletops made from Talavera tiles, Cantera statues, patio bricks salvaged from a mission in Mexico — patrons can travel to Mexico City without ever leaving the Sonoran Desert.
Open-air dining and cozy corners cater to private rendezvous and large gatherings alike, while ample outdoor spaces serve up sunshine or shade beneath mature-growth trees. In true Mexican style, massive circular tables invite familial dining. “Multigenerational families fill the restaurant always,” says Nicolas Delgado, who co-owns the restaurant with his brother, Andres, and is the eye behind the design. Chef Ruben Ortiz fuses culinary traditions with his own Puebla-style cooking, preparing favorite dishes like albóndigas soup, chile verde, and tamales, and combining sweet, savory, and spicy flavors.
While you can’t go wrong with any cocktail here, for the most rootsy experience, order the classic house margarita. On the cantina menu from the very beginning, it’s mixed with sweet and sour that’s made fresh daily. Salud to happy hour prices Sunday through Thursday from 4 to 6 p.m.