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St. Pete's Left Bank Bistro combines fine dining and fine art

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Posted at 3:52 PM, Sep 22, 2020
and last updated 2020-09-22 15:52:49-04

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — There is a restaurant in St. Pete combining fine dining with fine art.

"There's a lot of good artists in this area, but we are all having to reinvent ourselves," said artist Lance Rodgers.

Rodgers is used to showcasing his paintings in galleries and museums, but this is his first restaurant. He said it's perfect for 2020.

"I just had a show in Dunedin in a museum, they couldn't do an opening because of the distancing thing, it's difficult," said Rodgers.

Every other month The Left Bank Bistro will be choosing a different local artist to decorate their restaurant. That's hundreds of people a week who could be seeing their work for the first time, and it's all for sale.

"Here you are having a meal and while you are sitting there looking at this artwork and you're like, 'man I want to know more about that,'" said Rodgers.

"This is really how this restaurant was created, it was created around artists," said owner Susanne Byram.

Byram has 10 signature cocktails named after the artists and writers who socialized together on the Paris Left Bank in the 1920s, and now Rodgers joins that group.

The local featured artist will not only have a drink named after them but every time someone buys that drink, 50% of the profits will go toward the St. Pete Art's Alliance.

"I was very honored to be the first one, I hope I set the bar high," said Rodgers.

"We need to help each other, restaurants are going through a tough time, artists are going through a tough time," said Byram. "I always believed in giving back to the community, whatever you can."