Stepping into Kevin’s Bar & Restaurant in Kingston on Thursday night for the “re-opening” of the popular dining destination, I immediately realized I was in my happy place.
Guests and friends came out in droves to support area businessman Rob Friedman on his latest restaurant acquisition, and he’s making all sorts of upgrades to ensure Kevin’s continues its tradition of fine dining with a chic, trendy atmosphere.
Swanky booths were installed between the bar and dining room, breaking up the open floor plan and providing a more intimate, relaxed setting. Artwork hand selected by Friedman and artist Ken Marquis is displayed around the new booths, which I instantly noticed as General Manager John Lahr greeted me at the door.
I’d barely sipped my Tanqueray and Tonic before I was caught up in a bevy of conversations. From old Kingston neighbors and childhood friends to current clients and colleagues, there were people I recognized and knew at every turn.
All seemed enthralled with the latest upgrades.
In addition to the booths, there is a new wine rack, new carpeting and some updated hardwood flooring.
Beyond all of that, perhaps the most noticeable change is the outdoor dining area’s new awnings and fire pit. The area is enclosed so diners aren’t looking at Walgreen’s parking lot, John joked.
It’s important to note, also, that the private party rooms – three in total – are all still there for entertaining and meeting needs (can you tell I’m already in Christmas-party planning mode?).
Thursday wasn’t my first stop at a Friedman-owned restaurant last week.
On Tuesday, Cork Bar & Restaurant hosted me for “Mike’s Martini Night,” as I mentioned in last week’s column.
Nearly 100 people showed up throughout the night to wish me well in the 2018 Paint Pittston Pink Gentlemen’s Dash, which I ran in yesterday.
The staff couldn’t have been better. People who hadn’t been to Cork in years stopped in to support and promised to be back because of the delectable food spread and out-of-this-world martinis.
I’d be remiss not to thank my longtime friends for making it happen: Cork General Manager Carolyn Saporito, Public Relations and Event Planning Pro Ruth Corcoran and Sugar Plum Chocolates Chief Innovation Officer Neil Edley (he brought the snacks).
Besides Sugar Plum, the biggest donor to my Paint Pittston Pink campaign was Lonn Dean Salon in Shavertown, but truly I am grateful for the many supporters who took time to pledge money on my behalf, whether it was $200 or $2.
Being involved in as many charities as I am, I turn to the friends and family for assistance on many projects and campaigns.
They show up, donate, or get involved every time.
To say I’m grateful would be an understatement.
Mike McGinley is the Times Leader Media Group’s major accounts executive. Reach him at [email protected] or 570-704-3945.