Earlier this week I was concerned my fever dreams of bike-centric development for the Valley would founder on the shoals of low turnout. Ours would be the first CicLaVia in which no one from the neighborhood showed up. In my more cynical moments, the Valley can be reliably disappointing.
It didn’t take long to see my concerns were unfounded.
There are certain mysteries of the Valley I have yet to unravel, and one of them is how this restaurant manages to stay open without customers, despite having, after Pit Fire grill, perhaps the second best location on Lankershim Blvd. Great corner building. 270 degree visibility. Natural feng shui. Easy parking. Foot traffic most restaurants would kill for. Ample room for sidewalk tables. A neighborhood on the come up…a live theater district in short walking distance. And yet…every time I go by…empty! How is this possible?
Maybe it has something to do with the food. Or the service. Or the decor…it just cries out for Gordon Ramsay.
Just off the Chandler bike path, through an unattended gate at the end of an alley, behind a bougainvillea hedge and an ornate wooden door …. the neo-classical meets the Spanish colonial in a harem tent.
The former La Cana restaurant (and former Rudy’s Keg, and before then, the Idle Hour Cafe), shuttered since 1984, has been purchased by the folks who own the Bigfoot Lodge in Atwater and is now undergoing restoration into….well, I’m not sure exactly. But it will preserve the original contours of the structure, one of the final examples of programmatic architecture left standing in LA. And if there are cocktails, have no doubt they will start at $12.