Photography by Christine Arnold
Workshop Kitchen + Bar opened its doors in Palm Springs in September 2012, quickly garnering rave reviews for its inspired cuisine and décor. The restaurant, co-owned by Chef Michael Beckman and Joseph Mourani, is housed in a 1928 building located in the Uptown Design District, with a Spanish-style exterior that belies its sleek and modern interior aesthetic. The award-winning architecture and design of the restaurant (including a recent James Beard Award for Best Restaurant Design) is the work of Manhattan-based architecture firm SOMA and Palm Desert/Manhattan Beach-based design firm Map Development. You would think that a modernist, industrial-inspired design featuring a 27-foot open truss ceiling and copious concrete would be cold, but to the contrary the space is inviting, with the option of dining at the 32-foot communal table running the length of the main dining area, or one of the leather-clad booths flanking the center table, each set with tableware crafted by Heath Ceramics. There is also an adjacent private dining area that is great for a more intimate meal with up to 16 people, as well as the outside courtyard, which is perfect when the temperatures start to cool off in the desert.
Workshop has cemented its place as a go-to dining destination in the desert, featuring seasonal dishes that incorporate ingredients from local California farms, making liberal use of wood-fire grilling and sous-vide techniques. Cocktails are of the craft variety, with inventive combinations of delicious ingredients.
Most recently Workshop has added a Sunday brunch to its offerings, and it is not to be missed. For one day a week, they open their doors at 10 a.m. (just dinner service is available every other day), serving up a menu that will leave you struggling to pick just one or two items. The solution: bring some friends and order a variety of dishes to share, like the Jidori chicken and waffles, with house gravy and New England maple syrup; the blue crab eggs Benedict, with sautéed local escarole, grilled blood orange and hollandaise sauce; or the omelette with truffle pecorino, mushrooms and green onions.
The homemade breakfast pork sausage with roasted fennel is outstanding, as is the surprisingly addictive half avocado baked with local goat cheese, drizzled with honey and topped with chopped almonds.
A side of mesquite-grilled levain bread with carrot butter is a welcome twist on traditional bread and butter, and the fresh market juices from Hemet, California-based Bautista Creek Local Produce are also a highlight; try a custom combination like the blood orange with ruby grapefruit, or the fresh carrot juice with tomato. Prefer your morning tomato juice in a bloody mary? Well you’re in luck there too, with an extensive bloody mary menu that allows you to customize your morning cocktail to just your liking.
Workshop Kitchen + Bar
800 N. Palm Canyon Drive, Suite G
Palm Springs, CA 92262
Brunch is served from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Sundays only
Dinner is served nightly from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. Sunday through Thursday, and 5 p.m. to 11 p.m. on Friday and Saturday
Photography by Christine Arnold for Palm Springs Style; may not be used without express permission