French Flavor With Flair.
When French-born Didier Bloch opened Café des Beaux-Arts in 1993, he wanted to make it a little piece of Paris on El Paseo, modeling it after the bustling bistros that line the streets of his home city serving excellent food in a comfy, casual setting. Twenty-three years later, it’s clear the concept is a success.
Locals, snowbirds, and visitors alike visit the eatery for both authentic French dishes like the ever-popular seafood Bouillabaisse, Tuna Nicoise salad, Quiche Lorraine, and Duckling a l’Orange, as well as what Didier dubs “American dishes with a French touch,” including the brie burger and a crepe stuffed with scrambled eggs and chorizo.
Over the years, Bloch has made some upgrades to the restaurant, expanding its covered patio for more prime people-watching, adding breakfast service four days a week after regular patrons requested it, and building out a Parisian-style bar (fittingly named “Le Bar”) where diners can indulge in the full menu, sample a selection of small bites, and, of course, sip a cocktail or glass of French wine. Le Bar also features a happy hour, which goes all night certain times of the year, and features live jazz on Wednesday and Friday nights during season.
Café des Beaux-Arts will become a family affair later this year when Bloch’s daughter, Vaiana Bloch-Brown — who helped out at the restaurant growing up — will move back to the Coachella Valley to help run the business, eventually allowing her dear old dad to take a step back from daily operations.
Did You Know?
Bouillabaisse (b’yäbes’, -bās’;) n. [[Fr < Prov boulh-abaisso, lit., boils and settles< bouli (Fr bouillir), to boil + abaissa (Fr abaisser): see abase]] a stew of various fish, crustacean shellfish, vegetables, and seasonings: the broth is served over bread slices, often with a spicy garlic sauce, and the fish and vegetables are served alongside. Saffron is the signature ingredient in Café des Beaux-Arts’ Bouillabaisse. It’s heaven in a bowl.
Café des Beaux-Arts
73640 El Paseo (at Larkspur), Palm Desert 92260
Price Range: $$