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“Always good food and friendly service”
5 of 5 bubbles Review of Cafe Aroma

Cafe Aroma
Ranked #2 of 42 Restaurants in Idyllwild
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $10 - $30
Cuisines: American, Fusion
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Romantic, Families with children, Kids, Local cuisine, Special occasions
Dining options: Dinner, Late Night, Breakfast, Brunch, Lunch, Free Wifi, Full Bar, Outdoor Seating, Reservations, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Takeout, Waitstaff, Wheelchair Accessible
Description: TripAdvisor's #1 Rated Restaurant in Idyllwild for 2014 Working in tandem with amazing culinary talent, some of which have gone on to The Culinary Institute of America at Hyde Park, NY and Le Cordon Bleu, the Aroma kitchen team uses classic recipes infused with unique, original ingredients, to create beautiful dishes with French, Nuevo Latino, Asian and SoCal influences. Cafe Aroma proudly supports our local farmers, wineries and brewers and features fresh, organic, and sustainable products, along with vegetarian and gluten free options. A unique bistro-gallery experience, featuring some of Idyllwild's most well-known and accomplished artists, featured in two-month, rotating exhibits. Idyllwild's hippest and funkiest dining establishment, Cafe Aroma is the hot spot on "The Hill." Enjoy breakfast, lunch or dinner, along with great snacks and desserts and an assortment of bottled micro-brews and local, artisan wines, indoors or out, on our free Wi-Fi enabled patio deck, the inspiration of Cafe Aroma's "accidental owner" for the last 12 years, Hubert Halkin. Hubert's list of deeds is long, including being an Idyllwild resident for many years, Professor Emeritus and Department Chair of Mathematics at UCSD, a mean bridge player, and all around groovy Frenchman. Not to mention...You won't believe what he can demonstrate table-side with a straw and your Osso Bucco bone! Music is one of the cafe's cornerstones, and features an amazing array of talented musicians, known locally, regionally and nationally. It's no wonder that, among musicians, Cafe Aroma's outdoor stage is known as the Madison Square Garden of Idyllwild! The community of Idyllwild is an eclectic collection of souls, comprised of entrepreneurs, artists of every flavor, hipsters and church-goers, authors and meditators, some really cool, old school jazz cats, and a few belly dancers and ballerinas. Cafe Aroma is the gathering place for everyone, the place to "see and be seen" and features the most dog-friendly patio around. Restaurant, Art Gallery, Social Club and a Home Away From Home...If your home was this cool!
Palm Springs
Level Contributor
12 reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“Always good food and friendly service”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 15, 2014

Indoor/outdoor dining with live music...Dog friendly if you are so inclined.
Late night entertainment on the weekends.

  • Visited March 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Weader
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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472 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    286
    119
    42
    15
    10
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • Arabic first
  • English first
  • French first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Los Angeles, California
Level Contributor
83 reviews
67 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 38 helpful votes
“Didn't really meet expectations...”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 15, 2014

Previous reviews led us to expect a lot here, but some of the question marks raised by others - particularly the one by jj4848 that it is "not a relaxing place" - came home to roost. Relatively small and very full, the tables and chairs are very close together (and the latter very hard!). The mixed meats starter was excellent , but our other dishes nothing exceptional. Perhaps a personal gripe, but I don't like the (somewhat pretentious?) habit of serving things (eg, steak, mashed potato and asparagus) in a huge soup bowl. Despite discussing it in some detail, the server (or kitchen?) managed to get my wife's order wrong.The wine was very expensive (an unexceptional malbec at $11 a glass). Expensive overall. There wasn't any entertainment the night we were there - but I don't think we'll be back to try again.

  • Visited April 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank dougaldawn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Culver City, California
Level Contributor
6 reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Delicious food in relaxed setting”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 5, 2014

We ate each meal at this cafe because everything on the menu was scrumptious and well priced. The cafe is friendly and inviting with tributes to their local American Idol finalist- we enjoyed feeling in the heart of the community spirit of Idyllwild. Many nights they have great live music-not intrusive but adding to the happening charm of the cafe.

  • Visited April 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank SFCulver
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hemet
Level Contributor
116 reviews
85 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 42 helpful votes
“Gormet food in the wilds of Idyllwild....with local entertainment~!”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 3, 2014

Saturday lunch/brunch crowd will be surprisingly entertained with local talent from the Idyllwild Arts Academy. Not only is the food very good but the entertainment and young musicians are excellent. Fresh air, great food, and a lovely hidden community not far from Hemet....which is also a winter wonderland at the moment. However this is a fantastic place to escape the summer heat in mid and late summer months.

  • Visited April 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank TravelmamHemet
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Diego
Level Contributor
21 reviews
14 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
“Weekend Getaway”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 26, 2014

We had been to Cafe Aroma in the past & had enjoyed the visit, so we decided to go again during this trip. My wife & I went here the first night of our trip, around 5:30 pm. It wasn't yet busy as it gets. Our waitress was fairly new to the restaurant, I think she said that it was her 2nd week. This was evident when describing the specials, she even missed mentioning one of them. My wife ordered a scallop salad which she totally enjoyed. I on the other hand ordered the duck. I love duck, but on this occasion it had been over cooked, which is easy to do if not careful. The meal was ok, but I wouldn't say it was outstanding. We will probably go again on our next visit, but I hope the food will have improved.

  • Visited March 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank SDBOLTMAN
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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