Last night we had the pleasure of attending Delab’s (Design East of La Brea) monthly gathering of creative types, this time at Cole’s, a legendary restaurant and bar in the Pacific Electric Building in Downtown LA. Open since 1908, Coles is known for its French Dip sandwiches (it claims to have invented the delicacy), clever–and strong–mixed drinks and “atomic” pickles.
It just re-opened after a two year renovation by Ricki Kline, who has also designed historic downtown favorites Seven Grand, Golden Gopher, and Broadway Bar for owner Cedd Moses. Kline’s renovation included installing patterned burgundy fabric wallpaper, etched fish bowl lighting, dark mahogany panels, penny tile floors, and original stained glass. A cozy, more dimly-lit bar in back replaces the old kitchen, and serves as the perfect place to test out how many types of french dip (lamb, pork, roast beef, etc) you can try in one sitting.