Coles 735 Main

Coles 735 Main

It had been a while since the mister and I had stopped in to Coles 735 Main. In an effort to try to add some new restaurants into our routine we thought we’d stop in and do a sampling of the menu (we get in the same ruts you guys do and eat the same places over and over). Inside Coles you’ll find a warm and inviting space that makes you feel like you just stepped into the French countryside…but when the sun is shining, on a beautiful summer evening, the patio is where I want to be! The patio here is the perfect little spot where you can watch the people of Main Street pass by and get lost in your own little evening vacation.


I love that Coles offers a patio “Bar Bites” menu with small plates and sharables ranging from $5-$14. The mister and I eat out almost every night of the week, so it is nice to have some lower priced options but still get the quality from a fine dining establishment like Coles.


But first things first…cocktails.


The Southern Peach Tea (American born sweet tea moonshine, peach puree, fresh mint syrup and a splash of soda) for me and a Bulleit on the rocks for the mister (Coles has an extensive bourbon list for all the bourbon lovers out there).

Side note…I scored this adorable white ruffle tank just down the street at Calypso Boutique. I am finding the best little gems there lately. I could live in all white everything in the summer.


From the Bar Bites menu we started with the Braised Pork Belly (his choice) and the Baked Brie ‘en Croute’ (her choice).


Jesse loves pork belly so we always have to ordered it when we see it on a menu. (The pork belly is marinated in citrus ginger soy, served on a frisee citrus salad and braising liquids.)


The Baked Brie…was basically demolished (see photo below). The combination of warm brie, wrapped in phyllo, paired with an apricot and tomato chutney, drizzled with balsamic and served toast points…oh I’m salivating just thinking about it. A great sharable (or keep it all for yourself) that is bursting with flavor.


Next up, entrees.

With an extensive list of menu items (there is something for everyone here) I was torn between the scallops and the fish special. When this happens I usually default to my waiter to help me make my decision (since they have sampled majority of the menu…if not all of it).

The fish special for the evening was a Ponzu marinated Blue Marlin, pan-seared and served over sticky rice with sweet corn dashi and miso/goat cheese stuffed shishito peppers.


If this special is on the menu, order it…don’t even ask questions. It is an explosion of flavor with the warm miso/goat cheese flowing from the peppers mixed with the Blue Marlin. I made sure to get a bite of everything on the plate for the full experience.  I am glad I listened to my waiter on this one!


The mister also wanted the fish special but we can’t get two of the same dishes…not to mention he knows I can never finish my entire plate. Therefore he defaulted to his fav…the Filet Oscar style (topped with asparagus, crab meat and bearnaise sauce) and it did not disappoint. His filet came out cooked to perfection (if anyone has had a steak with Jesse you know this speaks volumes…his steak rarely comes out as ordered…charred medium rare).


We don’t normally get dessert…mostly to keep our waist lines in tact…but some days you just can’t count calories. Today was one of those days.…You know it’s all going downhill when you say “we can just have a few bites…”

The mister loves cheesecake and it was one of the dessert specials. One cheesecake special please?

I wanted something more summery and light so I went with the key lime pie. Man oh man did I choose well. I’m not sure I’ve had key lime pie this good outside of Key West! Don’t get me wrong the cheesecake was to die for too but this key lime was so light and fluffy…almost like a lime whipped creme or mousse. If you are a key lime pie person you have to stop in here for a slice (or two.)


I love the history behind Coles 735 Main (which I didn’t know till looking around their website). The building Coles calls home was built-in the 1930’s. It first housed a little restaurant known as the Stirrup Cup which was known for their Stirrup Cup Hotbrown. Since it’s closing, the building has been a pharmacy and numerous restaurants like Halls and what I remember as Furlongs. Chef Cole Arimes told us a handful of guests have come in, been seated, then asked “isn’t this a Cajun restaurant?” How funny!  Having grown up in this area of Lexington, Chef Cole was excited to be able to bring his vision of eclectic yet simplified menu of classic dishes to the Lexington restaurant scene and make home here in the Ashland area.

Chef Cole-we are glad you are here as well! 

Reservations are recommended but not required (it was booming the night we went so I’m glad we had one!) I promise you will not be disappointed and be sure to save room for dessert.

You may even run into Jesse and I on the patio! 

{ Photography by Jesse Rohr }

This post was sponsored by Coles 735 Main. The opinions expressed herein are those of the author and are not indicative of the opinions or positions of Coles 735 Main. 


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