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Wally’s Desert Turtle

Address : 71775 CA-111, Rancho Mirage, California 92270

PHONE : 760-568-9321

Official Website

Savor unforgettable modern Californian cuisine at the desert’s most highly awarded restaurant. Wally’s Desert Turtle, now celebrating 41 years as a local dining landmark, has earned the Mobile Four Star, AAA Four Diamond, and OpenTable Best Overall recognitions.

Established by Wally Botello, founder of the famed Velvet Turtle chain, the restaurant is still family-owned — operated by his son, Michael Botello, and Michael’s wife, Nicole.

Wally’s continues its storied legacy, incorporating a commitment to sustainable, organic, and locally sourced fare by partnering with Hercules Ranch and Superior Farms for premium, naturally raised beef and lamb; Shelton Farms for organic poultry; and responsible purveyors for sustainably raised seafood. “Our reputation and the quality of the food have always been what’s kept our locals and snowbirds coming back,” Michael shares.

For a truly memorable meal, start with one of Wally’s classic handcrafted cocktails, then order the pan-roasted Hercules Ranch filet, served with roasted baby beets, celery purée, celeriac salad, and Côtes du Rhône sauce. Top off your evening with a signature soufflé; flavors include Grand Marnier, Valrhona chocolate, or cappuccino.

The restaurant offers nightly entertainment by renowned jazz musicians John and Michael Bolivar. If you’re looking for something light, join the Bolivars at the bar for a glass of wine accompanied by Honolulu tuna tartare with wasabi tobiko, ponzu emulsion, and nori dust.

Don’t miss Wally’s annual holiday events and the famous Friday Fashion Show Luncheons during season. A trip to the desert would not be complete without a visit to Wally’s Desert Turtle.


  • Photo by Jaime Kowal

  • Photo by Jaime Kowal

  • Photo by Chris Miller