an apartment building near my hotel
Eating L.A. spent the weekend at the Palm Springs Film Festival, and as at most film festivals, eating wasn't the raison d'etre. It can be hard to get a square meal at a festival -- in Cannes, I've subsisted for many days in a row on nothing but squiggles of pâté piped onto mini-toasts, and in Park City, I've resorted to alternating energy bars with sandwiches sold outside of screening rooms. Friday night, I went to a party at one of Palm Springs' newer restaurants, the Tropicale. The restaurant/lounge is owned by former partners from L.A.'s Tahiti and Indigo, and it definitely had a more Hollywood feel than most places in the desert. The hors d'oeuvres were tasty and I liked the flat-screen TV fireplace in the lobby, the spacious heated patio and the kitschy tropical mural over the bar. On Satruday, I was happy to find a new cafe just down the street from the Trina Turk boutique. Jake's Ready-to-Eat (right) has prepared foods, lush salads (Asian chicken salad at left), meaty sandwiches, two darling patios and even a full patio bar for evening cocktails, and it's a real step forward for the area. Saturday night, it was charcuterie and chocolate fondue for dinner at a cocktail party at the stylish Viceroy hotel, and Sunday, the awards brunch was held at Spencer's Restaurant -- like most of Palm Springs, a bit staid, but so relaxing, you feel like melting. Bit by bit, Palm Springs restaurants are starting to improve, but it's an extremely slow process.