Desert Hot Springs, CA 92240
In Essense, we want our guests to savor exceptional farm-to-table cuisine that nourishes the body and replenishes the soul. Share a warm, inspired setting with friends or someone special. Encounter service that is so attentive it seems effortless and invisible. Delight in the fresh bounty of the land and immerse yourself in a culinary experience that offers explosive flavors, rich produce and boldly seasoned proteins paired with crisp inviting textures. Essense…an experience that indulges the palate, seduces the senses and feeds your passions.
Guests must be 18 years or older to access the property.
Californian, Mediterranean, Organic
Hours of Operation:
Monday-Sunday: Breakfast: 7:30am - 10:30am
Lunch: 11:30am - 2:00pm
Dinner: 6:00pm - 10:00pm
18 Years or Older to Access the Resort
$31 to $50
AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
Live Music on Thursdays & Fridays
For group reservations, contact email@example.com
On site parking
Bar/Lounge, Beer, BYO Wine, Cafe, Corkage Fee, Farm to Table, Fireplace, Full Bar, Non-Smoking, Outdoor dining, Private Room, Takeout, View, Wine
Special Events & Promotions:
Monthly wine dinners.
Essense Ratings and Reviews
This restaurant has not received enough ratings in the last 120 days to display a current ratings snapshot
Healthy and Delicious
The food at Essense goes with the over all vibe and feel of the Two Bunch Palms Resort. Breakfast, lunch or dinner the food is delicious. Healthy but SO tasty, you can eat it all and not feel guilty! The staff is great and can accommodate any request.
We were there for lunch on my friend's birthday, had a lovely table along the big widow. The restaurant has a charming setting, relaxing and serene, yet the food experience was not good. My companion had the Essense Burger that was fully cooked, though he requested for medium and pink inside, the Kobe Wagyu beef was dry and without taste. I had the Baked Salmon Nori Roll, also dry and bland, had to wash it down with coffee. Have many farm-to-table experiences, the farm is not good if that's how the food taste, or no taste actually and for those prices.
Nice ambience, disappointing meal
After reading great reviews of this place, we made reservations and were able to find it (not easy, kinda hidden). While the staff was nice, and our salads were tasty, our entrees took a very long time to arrive. Though the wait staff apologized and promised our food was coming right out, it was still a disappointment when it arrived. My duck entree was good, but my husbands lamb dish was lacking. It seemed like they ran out of the ingredients, as the plate did not warrant the $37 price tag. We do not mind paying top dollar for great food, but this was not up to par. Our waitress gave us a complimentary dessert of chocolate and berries, which was a nice gesture.
This restaurant was dank. From the momen ...
This restaurant was dank. From the moment I stepped foot onto the property, I knew I was in for something special. Indeed, I was.
I opted for the Kobe burger. It was fresh, in both the metaphorical and the literal sense, or essense, of the word. Juicy, flavourful, with a nice char. The vegetables added a delightful crispness and were properly balanced. My wife ordered a salad.
I accompanied my hearty meal with a light, refreshing and rejuvenating cocktail. I forgot the name, but it had freshly muddled basil and cucumber, gin, simple syrup, lime juice and soda water. It was the beez colokneez!
It was towards the end of my feast that Ryan, the manager, came to our table to inquire about our day. This led to a tour of the property, a story of Al Capone, a former resident of the property, and ultimately, a life-long customer and friend.
The staff was wonderful. The food was magnificent. The drinks were off the chain.
Thank you all for your hospitality and putting the cherry on top of me and my wife's anniversary.
Two Bunch Palms Resort celebrating their 75 years
It was our first visit to this charming resort where we had dinner at their restaurant, Essence. Age is evident in some aspects, but it works here. The staff is terrific, from the young lady who greeted us when we walked in, to the bartender, to our server, to the Food and Beverage Manager, who stopped by to welcome us. We dined outdoors on a beautiful deck. The only negative was the upholstered seats which are stained and spotted. The menu is not for everyone. It leans towards organic, with only a couple of entrees that appealed to me and my husband. We started with a Caesar salad, which had olives in it...unusual. The lettuce was wilted and the dressing was dealt with a heavy hand. I had the Mexican Prawn dish, which was good, but could have been larger. My husband had the pasta, and he had the same comment regarding the amount of food. We ordered dessert, which was listed on the menu as Strawberry Shortcake, but turned out to be the Chef's version of Strawberry Shortcake, but not ours. We didn't like it, and they were kind enough to take it off the bill. All in all the atmosphere and the service more than made up for anything that was lacking, and we would go back again.
Beautiful Grounds, Good Food
The lady and I went to Essense in Desert Springs rather on a whim. Not too many fine dining options in this little 'burb. A beautifully low-key restaurant on some amazingly maintained land at the Twin Palms Resort. Feed the turtles after dinner! I had the beet salad with goat cheese and salmon. Couldn't find the salmon but the wood mushrooms were delicious. She had the burrata. Fresh Indio tomatoes MADE this dish! For dinner, my ahi tuna was a bit overcooked but I blame that on us being the last ones in the restaurant. The lady likes to take her time getting ready... The wasabi potatoes on the side were excellent as were all the sauces on the tuna. I like it veeerrrry rare, and it was seared a bit too long. The lady's prawns over curry was a nice dish, if the prawns were also a bit overcooked. The chef has an excellent handle on sauces and ingredients, but needs to take care a bit more while cooking later in the night. My only real complaint was with desert. We had the pineapple butter cake, which was downright stale! The coffee ice cream, salted caramel sauce and homemade whipped cream made up for it, so we ate around the cake. The Sangiovese was a nice wine choice for the lady and my gin tea cooler was a refreshing option. The bartender even came out to serve it himself and gave me some pointers on enjoying it. Believe me, I know how to drink alcohol, but still a nice touch. When you're done dinner, make sure to walk around the resort paths, as the stars are gorgeous at night, and the Japanese style sand gardens are beautiful, as are all the little ponds, where if you stop for a moment, turtles are likely to walk right up to you for a dinner of their own. I would definitely go back, albeit a bit earlier.
Great place to leave the world behind
Enjoyed a wonderful lunch with a relaxing atmosphere. Walking the grounds before or after your meal is a must. The food is very good. Like some others I would prefer that bath robes were not permitted in the dining room.
What a difference a week makes
We returned to Essense after a great lunch the week prior and it was extremely disappointing. It took three attempts to find a wine that was available and then one of the wines was off. I ordered the same meal as the week prior - Penne Al Fresco - and was greeted with a dish that was drenched in oil and had none of the fresh vibrance of the dish I had just a week earlier. The bread arrived at the table after the lunch dishes. A listed ingredient in one of the desserts was not available and although it was substituted, it would have been nicer as listed. We were going to try the restaurant for dinner but I'm not sure that we will. If they allow people to wear bathrobes at dinner as well, then we most certainly will not.
Great Lunch Spot
Essense is a very relaxed setting to enjoy a nice lunch with a glass or two. Looking forward to trying the dinner menu.
The only drawback was that guests of the resort turn up to the restaurant in bath robes. I understand the nature of the resort but the restaurant is open to the general public, and I would have thought that a certain standard would be required.
Good makeover, but needs work
Decor gets five stars! Hostess & did not read/relay our Open Table special request to server. Dinner was ok, but filet mingon sauce was runny. Veggie gaspatcho consisted of two tablespoons for $8! The waitress even said sorry when she delivered it to us. We asked for our half eaten duck dinner ($$$) to be wrapped to go, but the server never brought it back...Open Table request for birthday celebration, w/ no acknowledgement of it by anyone. We ordered desert with no extra fuss (there had already been so many issues w/ the two parties next door. Please do not sit the only three tables in the restaurant next to one another so we have to listen to other's awful language...Pls work on service & hope the chef fine tunes his dishes.
Beautiful setting - make sure
Beautiful setting - make sure you stroll the grounds while you are there. There is a path through the grotto that goes down to behind the building where there are two ponds and then further. Very serene.
Food and service were both good to excellent.
My only gripe was that we made a reservation on OpenTable and they seated us in the lounge part of the restaurant, even though there were empty tables in the main dining room. We asked to sit there but they said they were 'reserved'... even though we had an OpenTable reservation.
One other important note: The OpenTable app shows the location on the map to be about 0.5-1 miles WEST of Palm. In reality you need to turn EAST when coming from Palm. Informed restaurant.
Beautiful gem in DHS!
"Moisture is the essence of wetness, and wetness is the essence of beauty." - Zoolander
Essense literally MADE my trip. My wife and I love to go to DHS spas, namely "The Spring". We found this little gem (newly opened) by sheer chance. What we found was delicious food, an incredible ambiance, and a most helpful wait staff. The manager, Ryan, was extremely hospitable and made us feel welcome, like friends.
We will be tossing Essense into our DHS routine of ultimate relaxation and pleasure.
Did I mention, the food is amazing?
The menu is very appealing
The menu is very appealing and the food is prepared with care and style. However most dishes were lacking flavor and continuity. Many things were too sweet or saucy or very bland. Meat dishes were overdone.
Service tires hard but is off. The 'hostess' doubles as a bus--girl and is uniformed as one. The waitress was friendly and helpful but lacking in deep knowledge of the food and preparation.
Who I believe was the manager paid no attention to the goings on and sat with friends sharing a bottle of wine.
Of course the place itself and view are very special.
This new restaurant at Two
This new restaurant at Two Bunch Palms is a wonderful departure from the old one. The eco décor is a breath of fresh air and speaks to the property's new direction of healthy gourmet dining. Their menu is Cal-mediterrean infused with local ingredients. I especially love the Borscht, Indio Date Salad and their salmon and steak. But if you want to try a true vegan dish, go for the beet and lentil burger - YUM! The staff is nice and since the restaurant has been doing so well, they are going through growing pains. Oh and don't forget to try their fresh juices with kale and beet (Hani's magic) during the day and then select from their wonderful wine selection.
Please sign in to record your input. Thanks!
Report this review as inappropriate?
If you believe this review should be removed from OpenTable, please let us know and someone will investigate.