Monday, November 30, 2009

Matchbox Pizza Palm Springs: Suds in the desert

If you've been eating in Palm Springs for decades, since Hamburger Hamlet was the only edible place around, you've learned to be thankful for small things: A good beer list. An ample, tasty burger and fries. A decently-made pizza crust. A place that's guaranteed to have lively customers, instead of a sea of empty tables.
All these things can be found at Matchbox Pizza, an offshoot of a Washington D.C. pizzeria that has become many desert visitors' default dinner stop. Pretty much every place in Palm Springs, including the plush revamped Riviera Hotel, has happy hour every night of the week from 5-7, and Matchbox's is a good one. There are $6 pizzas, $5 cocktails and $2 off draft beers. While I was in the desert, I worked my way through the drafts, trying Acme IPA, Leffe Blond, Allagash Curieux and Chimay Triple. The $13 Bistro burger is pricier than Tyler's, but was enough for a hearty meal and went well with the Chimay. A big salad with apples, pears and pecans was fine, but skip the glazed scallops and stick with pizza, beer and burgers.
The setting is right in the middle of the tourist action, which is a little rough on the nights live top 40 bands play in the plaza below, but nice on a warm, breezy desert night with the flickering firelight of the central bar area. In the desert, it's best to keep it simple, and Matchbox does simple just fine.
Matchbox Vintage Pizza Bistro
155 S. Palm Canyon Drive
Palm Springs
760-778-6000

Matchbox Vintage Pizza Bistro on Urbanspoon

3 comments:

Amy said...

I was really excited about this place when we went a couple of years ago - dying to have a decent place to eat in the desert. Well, the pizza was just ok and the salad was awful. Service was intermittently nervous and nonexistent.

They did have good beer though.

We have not been back - will check out Cheeky's next time. Thanks for the recommend.

carter said...

Matchbox is operated in the desert by the same people who own The Falls Steakhouse in the same project.
Another good place to eat is El Mirasol for Mexican food, a bit more Americanized than I might like, yet light years better than the Toritos/Acapulcos of the world.
Cheeky's is definitely on my list next time as well, and they now have full liquor availability.

Maria said...

hi Pat..i love your blog..i don't know where to send tips so i wanted to tell you I heard that CakeMonkey is going to be opening a store front in Silverlake..yummm