Skip to main content Skip to footer site map

Lola's Garden Debuts At Suburban Square With Acclaimed Chef Andrew Wood

Lola's Garden will officially open to the public this Thursday, April 15.

FCM Hospitality and owner Avram Hornik head to the Main Line with their first-ever suburban brick and mortar concept. Lola's Garden (51 St Georges Rd) will officially open to the public this Thursday, April 15th at 5:00pm, with a grand opening ribbon cutting planned for Friday, April 16th at 11:00am.

The latest stunning open-air restaurant joins the ranks of FCM Hospitality's other outdoor restaurant and hospitality concepts, such as Harper's Garden, Morgan's Pier, Parks on Tap, Rosy's Taco Bar, Craft Hall, The Garden at Cherry Street and others. The brand-new indoor and outdoor restaurant, patio and beer/wine garden hybrid takes inspiration from the company's popular Rittenhouse restaurant, Harper's Garden. The 240+ seat dining destination will offer beautiful and picturesque views of Suburban Square's inner green courtyard, while offering the approachability of the company's waterfront favorite Morgan's Pier.

The Modern American culinary program will be chef-driven and highlight seasonal local offerings with acclaimed Chef Andrew Wood, who is well-known from his BYO Russet. Look for ample vegan, vegetarian, gluten-free and kids' options. The beer program will feature 15 all local Pennsylvania beers on tap. The wine program will feature all Pennsylvania wines including wines on tap and an intimate curated bottle list. The cocktail program will feature 10 to 14 draft and hand-crafted to order cocktails showcasing seasonal flavors and local ingredients. The bar program will also feature inventive seasonal and rotating mocktails. For more information visit Lolasgardenrestaurant.com, follow LolasGardenArdmore, and/or call 484-412-8011.

Lola's Garden, whose name takes inspiration from the Kinks song Lola, features beautiful design, lush plants, a massive outdoor trellis, expansive room for socially distanced seating, an award-winning chef in the kitchen, and a robust bar program that celebrates everything about our great state of Pennsylvania. For FCM Hospitality and owner Avram Hornik, Lola's Garden continues to push the envelope and grow a company that during the pandemic saw the opening of Juno, The Garden at Cherry Street, River Street Beer Garden, Parks Pop-up and Parks on Tap: Cherry Blossom Edition. For Hornik personally, Lola's is a dream many years in the making and the opening brings him full circle with his relationship with Suburban Square and Ardmore that goes back 25 years.

"We are excited to be part of the renewed energy and exciting changes in Suburban Square and in Ardmore," said Hornik. "Back in the early 90s, I owned several coffee houses and wanted to bring an outdoor coffee kiosk and seating to the very same spot at what will now become Lola's Garden. Now, 25 years later, my relationship with Suburban Square comes full circle. Kimco Realty is transforming what was one of America's earliest planned suburban shopping centers. Shopping centers and malls are no longer designed exclusively as a place for commerce. They are now community gathering spots with a much larger purpose of promoting and fostering socialization and interaction. We want to be part of that energy and the new direction for Suburban Square as it evolves into an urban pedestrian-friendly town center and community hub that includes a grocery store, gourmet farmers' market, restaurants, green space and much more. Exciting developments in the near future that really attracted me are the plans for new housing coming to the Suburban Square area, plus the new rail station for Downtown Ardmore. This is FCM Hospitality's opportunity to partner with Kimco and Suburban Square to spotlight and celebrate all things local and from our state - from food and beer, to wine and cocktails. We are excited to join the Ardmore and Main Line community!"

Lola's Garden when it opens this weekend will feature 4,300 square feet of space that is broken down with 1,800 square feet inside for dining, lounge and bar, and 2,500 square feet outside for the giant four-season outdoor trellis. In between, look for ample space for cafe tables on two sides of the restaurant. The socially distanced seat count is 240+ people, with tables presented six feet apart for the health and safety of patrons and staff. Look for Lola's Garden to be very family friendly, with a kids' menu and ample high chairs - as well as space for parking those suburban strollers.

From the kitchen, Lola's Garden will offer a seasonally influenced, modern American culinary program that will offer a variety of dietary options including vegan, vegetarian, and gluten-free selections. Hornik is excited to announce and introduce the newest member of the FCM Hospitality team with Lola's Garden Executive Chef Andrew Wood - who hails most recently from acclaimed BYO Russet.

Under Wood's leadership and talents, guests will find dishes featuring uniquely paired honest, local ingredients, such as the spinach fettuccine 'bite' with crab, pepperoncini and blood orange. Lola's Garden will open with bites, salads, sandwiches, and entrees along with a brunch and lunch menu to roll out a few short weeks later. Do not expect more than a handful of ingredients on each plate.

"Coming from Russet, and moving forward to Lola's, the things that I care about are still a lot of the same: local, sustainability as much as possible, really an emphasis on simple, clean, big flavors. Big flavors, few ingredients. With that , there is nowhere to hide." - Andrew Wood

Guests should anticipate a rotating, seasonal menu similar to sister location Harper's Garden that will be inspired by local purveyors.

Roasted free bird chicken breast, spring vegetable caponata, rosemary (GF)
Spinach fettuccine, crab, peperoncini, blood orange
Salt-roasted fingerling potatoes, Serrano ham, romesco sauce, herb salad (GF)
Braised happy valley lamb leg, roasted carrots, turnips, onion soubise (GF)

Chef Andrew Wood began his culinary journey at L'Academie de Cuisine in Gaithersburg, Maryland, followed by a post at Le Bec-Fin in Philadelphia. His next step took him to Boston to work under Michael Schlow at Radius, where he met his future wife and pastry chef, Kristin. Wood relocated to Chicago where he each studied in some of America's top modernist kitchens, then migrated to the West Coast to immerse himself in the opposite side of the culinary spectrum. He settled at first in the farm-to-table mecca, Napa Valley, before moving to San Francisco to solidify his commitment to sustainability and local sourcing.

Wood returned to the East Coast, and the comforts of being closer to family, with a newly defined culinary passion based in West Coast cooking. After working at famed Fork, the Woods opened their own BYOB named Russet which was almost exclusively sourced from local farms, practiced whole animal butchery, and focused on the main mission of making good food and good stewardship inseparable. In addition to several local awards (Best of Philly Charcuterie, Outdoor Dining, Philly Mag's 50's Best Restaurant), he has also been acknowledged nationally as a Star Chefs Rising Star for Sustainability, Edible Magazine's Local Heros and was invited to cook twice at the James Beard House.

The Woods closed their award winning restaurant in 2019. Briefly after, while enjoying the views at Bok Bar, Andrew ran into an old friend, famed Alex Bois, who recommended that he meet his Lost Bread Co. partner Avram Hornik. Hornik and Wood's joint passion to invest in local vendors and enhance the Philadelphia food and beverage industry is a perfect pairing.

At the bar, look for all local beers, wines and spirits. For beer lovers, there will be 15 draft lines featuring all Pennsylvania beers - including ample selections from FCM affiliate partner Mainstay Independent Brewing. A selection of local, national and international bottles and cans will also be available. For cocktails, mixologist Matt Deutsh will feature 10 to 14 handcrafted cocktails to go along with perfectly batched draft cocktails. Cocktails will be designed to pair with the menu and also focus on seasonal and local ingredients. For wines, look for an intimate selection of reds, whites, rose and sparkling selections in draft and bottle. Wine selections will feature a mix of old world and new world wines, to appeal to a broader audience. Hard cider, a gluten free beer and hard seltzer will also be available.

In addition to the above beer, wine and cocktails, look for a selection of seasonally rotating hand-crafted artisan mocktails, such as Blackberry Ginger Soda, Spicy Pineapple, Cucumber Basil Butterfly and Hibiscus Palmer.

For vibe, guests will find an eclectic garden setting that will feature lush greenery and flowers, complimented by repurposed and recycled natural materials and found objects, with comfortable and community living room style seating and stylings. Even the inside dining spaces has the look and feel as if you are in the great outdoors. Hornik, who has become locally famous for his lavish use of natural, vibrant elements in decorating his venues, will lead the interior design team personally. Guests should expect Hornik's first endeavor outside of Philadelphia to exhibit those distinctive characteristics. Like Harper's Garden, look for green-house stylings and all-weather seating with heat and covering during the fall and into the winter.
By day, look for the outdoor spaces to be perfect for family lunches, business meetings and sidewalk viewing. By night, enjoy date night under the stars and twinkling lights.

For interior design, Lola's Garden utilized the creative talents of Interior architect Albert Taus. Design was also done by Hornik with help from his friends Myoshin Thurman & Kevin OBrien for art, decorative and furniture. Trellis was designed by landscape architect Mahan Rykiel

Design elements chosen for Lola's Garden include mixed use of soapstone, zinc and white oak in the interior at both bars. On top of those walls are antique iron grills and plantings. The host stand will feature planting set behind antique iron gates. The bathrooms have blue hexagon terrazzo and concrete tiles. There are vintage tiles inset into the bathroom doors. There will be a bird mosaic in each restroom. For the trellis, the wood is burned in a special technique called Shou Sugi Ban. This technique is an environmental way to treat the wood and makes it flame retardant. This is a link to more info.

Lola's also features one-of-a-king art, handcrafted pieces and hidden nostalgic nods throughout the inside and outside. There was a giraffe in the retail space when Avram was growing up (Banana Republic) and we have a wall decal that may make it in. Each bar features a stunning yet subtle detailed mosaic work above them to set the tone. There are stainless steel bar rails that outline the bar area and lounge from the main dining space. The flooring is reclaimed with a hit-or-miss rustic finish.

Later in spring, Lola's will be in full bloom when the neighboring trees are full with green leaves, and the new plantings surrounding the Trellis come into season.

Lola's will be available for semi-private special events, private parties and complete buy-outs. The space can be subdivided into many ways, including five different unique areas of the indoor-outdoor layout. For rental information and parties, please contact Lola's Assistant General Manager and Event Coordinator Kelly Smith at kelly@fcm215.com.

Lola's Garden is led by owner Avram Hornik, with FCM Hospitality Director of Operations Dana Canalichio, FCM Hospitality Beverage Director Matthew Deutsch, Lola's Garden General Manager Jason Savard (from Harper's Garden) - and of course the talents of Executive Chef Andrew Wood in the kitchen.

Opening hours will start with dinner service Wednesday to Sunday, from 5:00pm to 10:00pm. Starting on Wednesday, April 28th, Lola's will open for lunch and dinner, and launch brunch service that weekend. Starting May 3rd, look for Lola's to be open seven days a week for lunch, dinner and brunch, with hours after that date to be Monday to Friday, Noon to Midnight. Service hours for May 3rd and beyond will be: Lunch Monday to Friday, Noon to 3:00pm, Brunch Saturday and Sunday, 10:00am to 3:00pm, Dinner Seven Days a week 5:00pm to 10:00pm, and Lite Fare Seven Days a week 3:00pm to 5:00pm.

Reservations for Lola's Garden are now available through the website and on Resy. For more information visit Lolasgardenrestaurant.com, follow LolasGardenArdmore, and/or call 484-412-8011.

Hornik's newest concept will be located inside the center courtyard of Suburban Square, which is located at St Georges Rd, Ardmore, PA 19003. It replaces two retail store fronts where Kate Spade and Jack Wills were located. Lola's Garden now occupies the space that faces Sephora and Compass (Compass currently....and is moving), and its is diagonal from the Suburban Square fountain. Guests are invited to park just a few feet away in the free Suburban Square open-air parking lot, as well as in the covered parking garage. Lola's Garden is accessible by train when the brand-new rail station in Downtown Ardmore opens in a few short years just feet away from the restaurant's entry.

The origin of Lola's Garden dates to three years ago when Kimco introduced Hornik to ideas for the space and their future plans. After several proposed ideas and brainstorming, the lease was officially signed in 2019 for the property that would span several former retail stores. Hornik had a connection to the area as he grew up just a few short miles from Suburban Square and he has memories of visiting with his family as a child. Growing up in a kosher house, Salad Valley was one of the few restaurants his Jewish mother approved of. In the 90s, as a budding entrepreneur in his 20s, Hornik proposed a new coffee concept for Suburban Square that was turned down. The very same spot that Hornik proposed the coffee concept is the very same spot that 25 years later will become Lola's Garden.


Featured on Stage Door

Shoutouts, Classes, and More from Your Favorite Broadway Stars

Related Articles View More Philadelphia Stories

More Hot Stories For You