FARM - A little slice of the South of France in Palm Springs
Updated: Aug 2, 2021
Full disclosure: We've never been to France (it's on the bucket list!), but if you check out the Yelp reviews of FARM, a lot of folks describe dining at FARM like being transported to France.
FARM's backstory is that the owner, former land-use attorney, Liz Ostoich, really loves traveling to France and enjoying French cuisine. On one of her many trips, the concept of FARM was born out of her observation that within various small villages in France, there are many small restaurants serving deliciously rich yet healthy food, and each one of them looks like they’re on a farm.
We'd spent that morning exploring Sunnylands, and were plenty hungry after our almost one-hour wait. Luckily, it was an easy wait because we used the wait time to walk around the cute downtown Palm Springs area near FARM. Point being, we were definitely ready to eat, and quickly kicked off our lunch with FARM's popular baked brie:
Served with yummy baguette bread, hazelnuts, brown sugar, house-made date jam, and pears, it was absolutely delicious brie (excellent "mouth feel" as Charles Boyle would say), and it set our expectations high for the rest of the meal, and FARM did not disappoint in the slightest.
By the way, service at FARM was well-staffed and terrific; our awesome waiter Tim (yes, Tim and Tim had a little moment about how "Tim" is a great name) was very knowledgeable and had great recommendations throughout our meal.
Vacay mode calls for celebratory cocktails, especially at a place like FARM that has so many signature cocktails, so we ordered:
BOTANICAL BERRY (bottom / left): Peach-Orange Blossom Kettle One Botanical vodka, Lemon, Sweet vermouth, House-made peach-mint puree, House-made blackberry agave, Dash bitters, with a splash of ginger beer. Botanical Berry won the 2019 Palm Spring Craft Cocktail Competition and we could definitely see why!
OLD FASHIONED BOURBON (right): Bourbon with simple syrup and bitters
As for our entrées, local produce, eggs and artisanal meats star in FARM's breakfast/lunch menu, so we went with some classics:
ANDOUILLE OMELETTE: with - you guessed it - Andouille sausage, spinach, Gruyére cheese, and avocado. So simple and yet so decadent.
CROQUE MADAME: with Jambon de Paris, Gruyère cheese, Béchamel sauce, a beautiful Sunny side up egg, multigrain toast, mixed greens in a sherry vinaigrette. I love Croque Madames and this one was particularly delicious and satisfying.
I mean... that ham is thicc:
(At the bottom you'll see some of the Andouille omelette that Tim shared with me - we almost always swap/share food!)
Thoughtful waiter Tim also brought us some fresh strawberry "jam" to enjoy with the bread.
In these times of corona(virus), FARM is walk-in only for brunch/lunch during the day, and reservations are required for dinner. FARM offers Prix fixe dinners, Friday to Tuesday nights, which change weekly based on the chef's preferences and what's fresh: everything served is comprised of the freshest ingredients, as there are no microwaves or freezers at FARM. Unfortunately they were fully booked for dinner during our short Palm Springs trip, so we couldn't try their Prix Fixe menu, but fingers crossed for next time.
Another thoughtful touch at FARM - not only are there ceiling fans built into the patio "roof" but there are also some misters overhead that periodically emit a gentle mist to keep guests cool so that guests can enjoy their outdoor dining experience.
Toward the end of our meal, wonderful waiter Tim asked if we wanted to try any other cocktails since we liked the first ones so much. He was very familiar with their extensive cocktail menu and recommended one that I'd been eying:
HEMINGWAY'S HEARTBREAK: Rum, Grapefruit, Lime, Luxardo Maraschino - incredible flavors and the prettiest ice sphere with frozen flowers inside.
So video-worthy? :)
Since we loved the food and cocktails at FARM, fantastic waiter Tim encouraged us to visit FARM's sister restaurant, TAC/QUILA. Turns out, in addition to France / French cuisine, restaurant owner and former land-use attorney, Liz Ostoich also loves Mexico / Mexican cuisine. We were sufficiently intrigued and were officially on the lookout for an opportunity to visit.