During our last visit to Palm Springs, we enjoyed plenty of scrumptious food. Following some afternoon adventures, we returned to our room at Los Arboles Hotel and were ready for dinner. Since we were a bit tired from our excursions (traveling with a two-month-old can do that) it was ideal that dinner would be on-site thanks to El Mirasol.

So many Mexican restaurants claim to be “authentic” yet serve plates that leave much to be desired. Given that Mexican is one of my favorite cuisines, I’ve experienced this first hand. El Mirasol is the real deal, and it’s clear to see why they continually make “Best Of” lists.

Owned by Felipe and Lisbet Castañeda, El Mirasol has been a Palm Springs favorite since 1985. The inaugural location on Palm Canyon Drive is still a staple today, and in the early 2000’s they expanded to Los Arboles. At that time, the property had been abandoned and the Castañedas made it a labor of love to create the beautiful oasis guests flock to.

Decisions at El Mirasol


Although surrounded by the mountains and the beauty of the desert, El Mirasol takes you to many different places. As you sip your first margarita, take in the abundance of exotic plants and tropical fruit trees. The entire hotel grounds are brimming with a landscape that gives back. Observe closely and you’ll notice guava, lime, passion fruit, and even Jackfruit trees.  When your appetizers arrive, take note of the hammocks and Hacienda-like suites. You may just mistake your Palm Springs escape for a getaway to Mexico.

To adapt to health and safety precautions, El Mirasol has temporarily expanded its outdoor dining. In addition to their usual patio, they’ve expertly added tables and chairs around the hotel pool. This was ideal for us as we’ve stayed extra cautious, especially being out and about with a newborn. Our table was literally around the corner from our suite. This was perfect in case we had any fussy baby moments, which we surprisingly didn’t. Even Mabel loved the vibes!

Margarita time at El Mirasol


We began the evening as one should at El Mirasol: with a margarita. We decided to start with their Cadillac and it didn’t disappoint. Smooth, sweet, and sour, it hit the spot as the sun set on a warm day. Margarita enthusiasts can also enjoy their Skinny, Jalapeno, and House options. To enjoy yourself beyond margaritas, check out their red sangria for a refreshing treat.

Mouth watering, hand made guacamole El Mirasol in Palm Springs


As you peruse the appetizers, don’t skip over the guacamole. It’s truly some of the best we’ve ever had. Fresh and chunky with a hint of spice, it’s made daily by hand with Hass avocados. If you want to kick it up a notch, request jalapenos are added. Had I not had a dinner plate on the way, I could have feasted all night on it.

Delicious shrimp picado at El Mirasol in Palm Springs


Speaking of dinner plates, you cannot go wrong no matter what you decide on. After several debates, I decided on their shrimp picado while my husband went for the Pechugas Mirasol. The shrimp picado is a great example of California cuisine, and I loved its hint of heat thanks to the grilled chiles. I’ll admit that I did keep stealing bites of the Pechugas. Perfectly grilled chicken is topped with toasted purple tomatillo, dry Cora, and Puya chile sauce.

Savory Pechugas Mirasol in Palm Springs


I was also thrilled to learn several plates are gluten-free, even their enchiladas. While some menu items are marked with a “GF,” many can be prepared for dietary needs. They also mark which are vegan and vegetarian.

We were also impressed at how promptly each of our orders was brought to us. Despite it being a full house on both patios and indoors, no wait exceeded ten minutes. The staff, led by the Castañeda’s eldest daughter, Karina, were so hospitable. You truly feel like you’re among family. Whether you’re staying at Los Arboles or another Palm Springs Preferred Small Hotel, don’t leave town until you dine with El Mirasol.

In Chicago, St. Patrick’s Day is such a huge deal — they dye the Chicago River green and have a huge parade, then everyone does a pub crawl, downing Jameson shots with green beer chasers, before going home and calling in sick the next day.

At least that’s what I’ve heard.

Palm Springs loves a good parade, which is why, on St. Patrick’s Day, we don’t have one. No parade worth its floats wants to follow Pride. (Yes, Pride was in November, but it was a party!)

So, no parade, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t pubs to celebrate that 2% of Irish your DNA results revealed. We’ve got Shamrocks Irish Pub, and … that concludes our tour of Irish pubs in Palm Springs.

Inside Shamrocks Irish Pub. Photo courtesy of Shamrocks

We do, however, have a few places where you can chow down on corned beef and cabbage (C&C), the Americanized version of the meal the Irish consume on the day (in Ireland, it’s all about pork and potatoes).

Here are a few definite hits for the boiled delight, and a few that have celebrated in the past (a.k.a. may or may not this year).


Sherman’s Deli — The corned beef is always tender, and there’s not much you can do to hurt a cabbage.

Manhattan in the Desert — Located on the south end of Palm Springs, these guys make corned beef and cabbage on the regular menu.

Welcome to Manhattan in the Desert. Photo courtesy of Manhattan in the Desert

Village Pub — This multilevel party place has had some pretty swinging St. Paddy’s days in the past. This year the party goes from 4 p.m. until 2 a.m.

Palm Canyon Roadhouse — On Palm Canyon just southeast of Ramon Rd., this rock ‘n roll old school playground will have corned beef and cabbage on 3/17, as well as entertainment. I am not linking their website because they’ve been hacked, and unless you have a need for OTC Viagra, it’s currently useless. Link takes you to FB (which, in the grand scheme of things, is not much safer).

Agua Caliente Casino — Check with the steakhouse for C&C (not yet listed) but they DO have music in the form of Lee Rainey and the Midnight Players.

Near hits

Paul Bar — This little gem is a local treasure. Hidden in a not-so-tidy strip mall on the corner of Gene Autry and Vista Chino, they have served C&C in the past. Don’t let the lack of curb appeal fool you, the inside is as classy as you can get.

Paul Bar. Photo: Kay Kudukis

And that, my friends, pretty much covers it, unless you want to make your own celebration; then, try some karaoke where you can belt out “Danny Boy” or “My Wild Irish Rose” until the other patrons throw shamrocks at you.

Don’t forget to wear green on St. Patrick’s Day, though; it’s worn to keep you safe from those pesky, pinching leprechauns Palm Springs is known for (they’re not).

Happy Irish Day everyone!