Mimmo’s Italian Restaurant and Bar | Palm Desert Treasure

Review by: Michael Stern

Italian-Food Treasure

Tucked into a small shopping center off Highway 111, Mimmo’s doesn’t call out to passing appetites. But you’ll be hard pressed to find a seat in this cozy restaurant, especially on weekends. People who eat once at Mimmo’s eagerly return. They’ll likely tell their friends that they have found a Palm Desert treasure that serves some of the best Italian meals for miles around.

Meet Mimmo and Victoria

What makes Mimmo’s so great? The answer, simply, is Mimmo and Victoria Di Salvo. Their families’ recipes make this kitchen something special. Mimmo himself is a hands-on restaurateur. You’ll always find him on premises, taking care of business in the kitchen and dining rooms. He seems to know almost every customer. Ask him to describe any dish on the menu and he rhapsodizes. He loves to speak about the pasta made in his kitchen, about the heirloom tomatoes in his salad, about the wild Baja shrimp in seafood dishes. Ask him why his chocolate sponge cake is better than lady fingers for making a more elegant tiramisu. He will tell you. And after you’ve had a taste, you will be a believer.

It’s All So, So Good

After a few multi-dish sit-downs at Mimmo’s it is hard to recommend any one thing. At this Palm Desert treasure, you can’t go wrong. Pay special attention to silky gnocchi and anything that uses house-baked bread. The bruschetta rules! I fall to pieces forking into grilled polenta with wild mushrooms. Seafood in any form (especially the shrimp) sends taste buts into orbit.

Not Your Store-Bought Ladyfingers

And ah, dessert! Do save appetite for a square of tiramisu, made with chocolate sponge cake rather than ladyfingers. Mimmo explains that ladyfingers lose their body too soon when they are soaked with coffee and liqueur. His sponge cake, although light and fluffy, remains cakelike when thoroughly sopped. Likewise, mascarpone cheesecake is significantly lighter than typical clay-like cheesecake. A panna cotta crown and drizzle of berry sauce make it impossible not to finish … and to want more.

Romance In The Desert

Although the location is common, the experience of dining at Mimmo’s is refined: linen nappery, polished service, beautiful presentation of every dish, and, at night, romantic candlelight.

Directions & Hours

5pm - 9pm
  • Monday: 5:00 – 9:00 PM
  • Tuesday: 5:00 – 9:00 PM
  • Wednesday: 5:00 – 9:00 PM
  • Thursday: 5:00 – 9:00 PM
  • Friday: 5:00 – 9:00 PM
  • Saturday: 5:00 – 9:00 PM
  • Sunday: 5:00 – 9:00 PM

What To Eat

Seafood Pasta

Veal Chop Parmesan

Heirloom Tomato Salad



Grilled Polenta

Mascarpone Cheesecake



Mimmo’s Italian Restaurant and Bar | Palm Desert Treasure Recipes


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