coachella restaurants

Taste of Coachella: 7 Places to Get Started

Find everything from aromatic bakeries and trendy cafés to casual restaurants with live music.

Emily Chavous Current Guide, Restaurants

coachella restaurants
El Tranvia is that life-changing street taco cart transformed into a counter-serve restaurant that also comes decked out with an ice cream counter.
PHOTOGRAPH BY JAIME KOWAL
El Tranvia

1221 Sixth St.
760-391-9772
fb.com/tranviarestaurant

Hidden gem El Tranvia in Coachella is that life-changing street taco cart you’ve been dreaming about since your vacation to Mexico — transformed into a counter-serve restaurant that also comes decked out with an ice cream counter, well-stocked condiment and salsa bar, and décor like a medieval banquet hall. Choose from around a dozen traditionally seasoned and cooked meats to fill fresh, housemade tortillas, then dress your taco to your liking with cabbage, salsa, and even roasted peppers or grilled onions.

La Sorpresa Tortilleria

85697 Grapefruit Blvd.
760-398-1530

La Sorpresa is one part mini-mart and one part tortilla shop. Warm corn tortillas are made from scratch on-site and can be cooked to order or purchased by the package from the adjoining market.

The deals are as fresh as the tortillas — you can get three dozen for less than you’d pay for a cup of drip coffee. The store stocks all the hard-to-find necessities to prepare an authentic Mexican meal.

Sixth Street Coffee

1500 Sixth St.
760-619-2221
fb.com/sixthstreetcoffeecoachella

Coachella’s only indie coffee shop would be as at home in the trendier areas of Los Angeles as it is in the rapidly revamping East Valley. Order your Cuba-inspired cortadito (a double-shot 8-ounce latte sweetened with condensed milk) “for here” to benefit from the baristas’ talents for latte art. Vegans like Sixth Street for its oat milk option — not to mention the wide selection of plant-based pastries, doughnuts, croissants, and conchas.


Las Tres Conchitas

1540 Sixth St.
760-398-6594

The scent of freshly baked breads and pastries wafts from the entrance of this panadería (Mexican bakery) from 4 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. every day. In the heart of Coachella, walking distance from many of the city’s iconic murals, Las Tres Conchitas has been a hub of the community for more than 30 years. Locals come for the homemade conchas and ojos de buey, corn bread, birote, and artfully decorated specialty cakes.

lastresconchitas

PHOTOGRAPH BY @BEARLEADERCHRONICLE



Mariscos El Capitán

52565 Cesar Chavez St.
760-600-7575
fb.com/mariscoselcapitancoachella

This seafood-centric restaurant specializes in south-of-the-border favorites — oyster shots, ceviche, and campechana — and an array of Mexican-style sushi. The live music lineup features large ensemble bands that bring in an energized crowd, and hefty drinks keep the party thumping. Sunday hangover? El Capitán will nurse you back to health with a bowl of menudo and tortillas.

mariscoselcapitancoachella

PHOTOGRAPH BY @BEARLEADERCHRONICLE


Coco Freeze

84705 Ave. 50, Suite 4
760-619-2221
fb.com/cocofreezeicecream

This light-filled snack bar distinguishes itself from the shop’s Indio location by always reminding you what city you’re in: A mural stretching across one wall spells out “Coachella” in festival font, framed by pink palm trees and an encroaching astronaut. At an ice cream counter styled like a 1960s Volkswagen bus, employees source scoops for creatively flavored shakes and other epic desserts — which pair marvelously with savory and spicy selections from ceviche to queso-and-corn-topped hot Cheetos.


Sabores Handcrafted Ice Cream

49613 Cesar Chavez St., Suite C105
760-777-2917

Young families and hipsters alike flock to this local spot, thanks to the sibling co-owners’ unmatched knack for churning classic Mexican flavors into unexpected ice creams. Dream beyond horchata with options inspired by Gansito, a Twinkie-like pastry with notes of cocoa and strawberry, and mazapan, a rich, peanut-based candy that’s a party staple. Prefer treats with heat? The shop serves traditional shaved ice topped with hot sauce and spices.

SaboresIceCream

PHOTOGRAPH BY @BEARLEADERCHRONICLE