Bar/Restaurant: Blue Coyote Grill

Established: 1992

Area: North Palm Canyon

Typa Joint: Southwest/Tex Mex Restaurant

Signature Cocktail: The Wild Coyote Margarita

(Image below from the menu – too cute!)

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My new friends John and Holly, Sun City and Seattle residents, recommended Blue Coyote for dinner and margaritas. They knew about Bent – my quest and pilgrimage to visit 40 bar/restaurants in the Coachella Valley before February 1. When I first formulated the rules of Bent, I decided that I could not have the same drink at any other bar or restaurant. They assured me it was not a waste to burn the margarita card at Blue Coyote. Besides, said Holly, as long as the next bar or restaurant makes the margarita differently, it’s not the same drink, is it? (I was relieved to relax this rule a bit, as one of my readers, Gina, told me I could not miss the margarita at El Jefe at the Saguaro Hotel. After all, I am in the California desert near the border of Mexico; there are going to be a lot of cool spins on the classic margarita around here!)

Opened in 1992, Blue Coyote is on North Palm Canyon Drive. Right now it is across the street from a massive construction site, so sitting on the patio isn’t picturesque at the moment. The whole space is bright and colorful, with murals by local artist Snake Jagger. One of my readers, Kelly Callaghan, recommended that I meet Snake while in Palm Springs, so it was a cool surprise to see some of his work.

But enough about all that – let’s get to the margarita! Blue Coyote’s signature drink is the Wild Coyote – gold tequila, lime juice, and orange curaçao.

Orange curaçao! Why didn’t I think of that? I have always been a bit of a margarita purest and snob. When it came to the orange, it was only Cointreau for me, never triple sec, which I dubbed “the poor man’s Cointreau.” I never cared for the flavor of Grand Marnier. In a pinch I would substitute Patron Citronge for Cointreau, especially as it is half the price of the French import. But orange curaçao? It never occurred to me. An extra added benefit of using curacao is that it’s madly inexpensive when compared to Cointreau or Grand Marnier.

The three of us started off with a single:

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We enjoyed that so much we opted for a pitcher, a good deal at $47. (I was so busy drinking it I didn’t think to take a photo, so here’s a stock photo from the restaurant’s website.)

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Thankfully we had a lot of walking to do after dinner, which included Village Fest and Robolights!

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For dinner I had the Trio de Brochetas – one skewer each of chicken, shrimp & scallops, served over rice with jalapeño cream sauce. I have been dreaming of that dish ever since, and I must return to Blue Coyote to have it again before I leave. Once again, I was too busy scarfing it all up to photograph it, so here’s a photo from the website:

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What a great experience at Blue Coyote, all the way around. I think I’ll buy a bottle of orange curacao before the trip to Mexico. I have a feeling I’ll find plenty of limes and tequila when I’m down there.