If you’ve ever been to the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival, you know the two-weekend event isn’t just about the music. Sure, people head to the desert for Lady Gaga and Father John Misty, but while you’re out there, you can eat really, really well.
This year’s lineup of chefs reads like a who’s who of the culinary world, with talent curated by Goldenvoice culinary director Nic Adler. From Los Angeles, there’s Roy Choi of Pot (and Kogi and Chego), Neal Fraser from Redbird, Marcel Vigneron of Wolf, Nakul and Arjun Mahendro of Badmaash, and the teams from Plan Check, Sweetfin poke, Phorage, Ramen Hood, Bludso’s BBQ and Trejo’s Tacos — and those are just a few of the restaurants at the festival.
One of this year’s highlights included the introduction of a new tiki bar called PDTiki, the project of Adler and the team behind Manhattan’s PDT bar ( the name stands for please don’t tell). The 35-person bar is blanketed in low red light, hidden somewhere in the Beer Barn area. It’s an oasis in the middle of the festival, and you don’t need a VIP wristband to access it (just ask around). The drinks are what you’d find at a craft cocktail bar, complete with tiki mugs and the bar decor to match.
Below are highlights from a weekend full of good food, music and cocktails. There were plenty of fried chicken sandwiches, Korean barbecue bowls, chicken tikka poutine and even freshly shucked oysters.