When I thought about fine-dining in Lexington, Kentucky, I envisioned traditional Southern, white tablecloth, fine-dining establishments with dress codes for men and women. But, our experience at Coles 735 Main was nothing like that. Owned by Lexington born Chef Cole Arimes, Coles 735 Main is located in a refinished 1938 historic landmark. It's a bit like walking into your grandmother's home with gingham print pillows. While not the most contemporary decor, it is not stuffy, formal or stodgy.
We sat outside on the charming patio as the fireflies buzzed and lit up around us. The menu offers Southern cuisine with an eclectic global influence and features fresh local ingredients.
I love escaping to another world when I watch a movie. Typically, we watch our movies in a dark theater or in the comfort of our own home. But, earlier this summer, I went to a movie in an outdoor theater in Athens, Greece where the Acropolis is seen lit up above us. Sitting in the open air with dynamic surroundings takes one away to another place.
And now, in Los Angeles, you can enjoy a movie on a rooftop in Hollywood while feeling like you are in the middle of a movie set with the big bright neon lights above.
Outdoor movie screenings aren't uncommon in Los Angeles. You can watch movies in a cemetery, an amphitheater, a park or a hotel courtyard. These are all fun activities to do in the summer with friends. You pack your picnic and hope to get to the space early enough to mark out a central spot where you can spread out. Hopefully you can see over the heads of the people in front of you who brought lawn chairs when you forgot yours. And then you hope you can hear the sound of the movie clearly over the sound of people talking or chomping on food.
For the last year, I have driven up and down Centinela Blvd to and from LAX but I had never noticed Fin, a restaurant located half a block east of Centinela Blvd on Washington Blvd. Now I have! A modern space with minimal decor, Fin is located in the space that was formerly Mi Ranchita, a Mexican Restaurant.
The menu at Fin is Asian-fusion. Perhaps this is because owners Michael Flanagan, Gerardo Reyes and Ken Whang had all worked together as servers at Koi in the past? Well actually, that is where they met. One night Michael and Gerardo were drinking at Mi Ranchita when they told the owner they wanted to buy the place. The owner wasn't looking to sell the 25 year old restaurant but somehow they convinced him. They set out to remodel the space and hire staff as they created their own concept. But what impressed me so much was that they ended up also keeping the original staff from Mi Ranchita.
And why Asian Fusion? Because, as Michael explained, he wanted to offer a restaurant in the neighborhood that would be fun for a date spot or a night with friends.... flavorful, fun food that is easy to share and not too heavy. It's been a year now and Fin is a friendly local neighborhood restaurant.