This Local Landmark Only Gets Better With Age
Written By: Marissa Kohne
Photographed By: Bianca Simonian Jake’s Palm Springs
Summer of 2017 will mark more than the end of another season, but the 10-year anniversary of one of Palm Springs’ most beloved restaurants. Jake’s Palm Springs is celebrating this accomplishment thanks to the ceaseless attentions of Co-Owners Chris Malm and Bruce Bloch, alongside gifted Head Chef Mario Curci. The devoted group firmly established Jake’s as a community gathering place for relaxed and refreshing outings, a place that guests can come to unwind and have fun while they sample the exquisite California cuisine. Jake’s has welcomed guests for nearly a decade, and we congratulate them on an impressive achievement. Another 10 years is sure to be in their future!
Chris Malm and Bruce Bloch began Jake’s in 2007 after falling in love with Palm Springs. On a weekend vacation from New York City, they jumped at purchasing a condo and began setting the groundwork for their new endeavor, a restaurant plan that would become Jake’s. They both were, and continue to be, passionate about food and dining. Chris, especially, had the restaurant industry “in his blood.” He worked in restaurants throughout high school, which put him through Cornell University to earn his degree in Hotel Administration. In New York, Chris built a career with the Jean-Georges Vongerichten’s restaurant group, a chef whom New York declared the single most influential person on the way New York dines. Co-Owner Bruce Bloch had a successful career in New York advertising, which came in handy when the duo decided to embark on a new journey in sunny California. With Bruce’s advertising and branding expertise, Jake’s image was overwhelmingly positive for an emerging, and continuing, culinary icon. Now, nearly 10 years into their enterprise, the partners have built Jake’s into something of a Palm Springs empire. In the past few years alone, Jake’s has been recognized by OpenTable as a “Contemporary American Neighborhood Gem,” one of the top “100 Best Al Fresco Dining Restaurants in America,” and a “Top 20 Palm Springs Restaurants” by FlipKey. Chris and Bruce seem to have seamlessly hurdled over the obstacle most restaurants fail to overcome, and with flying colors.
Their success is also due to the silent third partner, Jake. Though you might have seen the restaurant’s namesake around the courtyard, Jake was perhaps most likely focusing on his chew toys in the upstairs office, as a happy West Highland terrier. Unfortunately, the team lost Jake last February. However, the team is happy to have a new four-legged friend around, Jackson—who is a direct descendant of Jake.
Chef Mario is yet another reason for Chris and Bruce’s success. Nearing eight years of partnership, Chris says Chef Mario is a vital component to Jake’s. Since he joined in 2009, the menu has been propelled towards greatness, which guests can sense in every bite. The group is “all about the food.” Putting excellent food on the table is their abiding passion, continuously earning them much deserved accolades. In fact, even though the restaurant closes for the summer season, they retain 90 percent of their friendly and passionate staff. Nothing reaches the menu before first being tried, tested, and teased to its prime state. There’s nothing this group of inspired individuals love more than welcoming guests into their home and earning their gratification. Making sure everyone walks away happy and satisfied with their experience is a continuous goal of Jake’s, and is recognizable in every aspect of their business.
Tucked away like a gem in the crown of Palm Springs, Jake’s outward appearance fills visitors with a sense of lightness and enchantment. Seeming very California chic, you’ll notice the sunny outdoor patio under shady crisp white umbrellas. Should you so choose, your group may dine in the impeccably designed interior dining room which overlooks the Uptown Design District, or out in the open patio. This popular dining spot is always warm, even on those sweetly chilling desert nights, making it a perfect destination for an intimate gathering with friends and family. “I want people to feel as though they’ve been invited to a party in my home,” Chris says, while Bruce says laughter is “one of the best sounds” he loves to hear in the restaurant.
An American bistro of this caliber surely slips up somewhere, right? Well, we certainly haven’t found any weak points. Chef Mario’s menu brings out the sophistication in this Palm Springs destination, with seafood starters like the Lobster Tempura or Firecracker Calamari. Delight in the Cioppino or traditional American recipes elevated to new heights such as the Chilean Sea Bass and Filet Mignon. If you want to try everything, take part in the three-course dinner special with a starter, main course, and a dessert of your choice (we recommend the Banana Toffee Crunch Cake!).
Open Tuesday through Saturday, visit Jake’s for lunch, dinner, and weekend brunch. They even offer take-out for fans who are on the go. If you have a pet, bring them along and enjoy your meal on the patio. Reservations for brunch and dinner are highly recommended as the restaurant is a crowd pleaser, and there are only so many tables to share.
Pet Friendly: Jake’s loves your pets too! Bring your four-legged pal along to eat with you on the patio.
Bloody Mary Heaven: For one of the desert’s most unique Bloody Marys, you’ll need to try one of Jake’s—complete with bacon and horseradish steeped in vodka. Yum!
Jake’s Palm Springs
664 N Palm Canyon Dr
Palm Springs, CA 92262
Jake’s Palm Springs Embarks on a Decade of Excellent Dining