Wilma & Frieda
73575 El Paseo
Palm Desert, CA 92260
Anniversary shenanigans continued during our desert trip celebrating my parents 50th anniversary. We had a big day planned, as we were going to visit Elvis's Honeymoon Hideaway, then I had compiled a list of stars homes that I thought my parents might like, and hopefully, we would have time for a nap before dinner. Also on the agenda was breakfast, which was going to help us get through our day in the desert heat, which was expected to reach into the low 110's. The choice for this breakfast was easy, we made our way to Wilma and Frieda's.
Wilma and Frieda's is located in the Gardens at El Paseo, right next door to Sak's 5th Avenue. I picked this breakfast and lunch restaurant for primarily two reasons. One, they are one of the most reviewed restaurants in the Coachella Valley on Yelp, and also because they just recently appeared on Diner's Drive-Ins, and Dives within the last month. I was also pretty impressed that they have a four and a half star rating with over 1000 reviews. I had high hopes for this place.
Wilma and Frieda is named after Owner Kelly McFall's grandmothers. Kelly has over 30 years in the hospitality business and with the help of a Kickstarter campaign, she wanted to open this place to serve comfort food to the people of Palm Desert. The brunch menu is dotted with just that, plenty of breakfast staples, house specialties, salads, sandwiches, and even a burger. There's also a big selection of baked goods, which are prominently displayed up front.
I really got excited when we arrived at the nearly empty mall, but there was still a thirty-minute wait for this restaurant. It almost seemed like Wilma and Frieda was the only thing open on this rather warm morning at 11. Once Katie received the text telling us that our table was ready, we were whisked into the busy dining room, which probably had about 15 or so tables filled with hungry patrons. It definitely felt busy, but the staff was doing a great job controlling the scene. Since we were on a little bit of a tight schedule we made our selections pretty quickly. This is what we ended up with.
Since the baked goods caught my eye as we were being led to our table, I had to give their Cinnamon Roll ($5.50) a try. This was lighter than I had imagined it would be, but it did not sacrifice in the flavor department. The cream cheese frosting was one of the lightest I have ever had, while the bread underneath was pillowy soft. A little more cinnamon and butter inside the folds would have been favorable, but one delicious cinnamon roll for sure. The four of us devoured this way too fast.
My dad might have still been full from the dinner the night before because he got this rather light meal, the Tomato, Mushroom, Avocado, and Queso Fresco Omlete ($14). He loved this veggie omelet, as there was plenty of tomatoes and mushrooms stuffed inside the well-crafted egg portion of the omelet. He also went the lighter route by getting a side of fruit instead of potatoes and tried the very good house made English muffin as his breakfast bread on this late morning. A great start to his day in the desert.
The only one of the four of us to get a sandwich, my mom opted for the BLTA Sandwich ($14). This souped up BLT came on whole wheat as per my mother's wishes and was full of some of the best bacon you will ever try. The bacon here was thick cut and smoked just enough. There was so much bacon in this that my mom took some out, which I was more than happy to relieve her of. This sandwich came with fries, which were excellent with the provided ranch my mom requested.
Katie fell back in line with the breakfast vibe here at Wilma and Frieda when she selected this Chicken Sausage, Tomato, and Goat Cheese Omelet ($14). This omelet satisfied Katie greatly. It was lighter than she imagined it would be, and she loved the way the goat cheese and the chicken sausage worked off of each other. The egg portion of this omelet lacked the greasiness that can sometimes accompany this kind of dish. The hash browns were good, and she really enjoyed the very well done biscuit and fresh preserves that came out with this omelet. She left here a very happy girl.
It's been a long while since I got the best item at the table, but we all agreed that this Mark's Short Rib Eggs Benedict ($16) was the best thing to be sat down in front of us on this morning. I loved this dish, with its house made English muffin, perfectly poached egg, delicious and tender short rib, and excellent hollandaise sauce. It pained me to give everyone a bite of this as I wanted to make it last as long as possible. The hash browns were done nice and crispy and rounded this meal out wonderfully.
Just in case we did not have enough on our plates, I also ordered Kim's Caramel Banana French Toast ($13). This plate kind of left me wanting more. It was fine, but I expected a thicker caramel sauce, and the french toast was just kind of there. I thought the drizzle of sour cream was going to be odd on this, but it ended up not even being present. After the spectacular Benedict, this was kind of a letdown.
Even with the rather lackluster finale on this early afternoon, we left Wilma and Frieda singing its praises. I can not envision myself coming back down to the desert and not coming to this fine restaurant for brunch. I can't wait to explore more of their menu soon and I have my eye on their burger, meatloaf, and the churro waffle to try next. Visiting Wilma and Frieda was a great kickoff to our day in the desert, and we actually ended up having enough time for that elusive weekend nap.
Out of five cartoons, (because of course Wilma Flinstone is an iconic cartoon character, but there's also the lesser known Frieda, who made numerous appearances in the Peanuts comic strips and TV specials), five being best to zero being worst, Wilma and Frieda gets 4 cartoons.
For more information on Wilma and Frieda, check out the website here: http://wilmafrieda.com/