DALLAS TWP. — Lum’s Fernbrook Inn will continue its half a century legacy under the ownership of Patrick and Coleen Kern.
The restaurant at 700 Main Road was named after Patrick’s uncle, Leon Kern Sr. who bought the business in 1965. Leon was frequently called Lum by family and friends, Patrick said.
The restaurant was passed down to Leon George Kern Jr. and his wife,Nancy.
When Leon Jr. died in November 2013, Nancy continued to operate the restaurant. Health issues caused her to decrease the hours of operation and she listed the property on the real estate market this summer.
Patrick, a Dallas High School 1982 graduate, was working in Cincinnati, Ohio, as a senior executive with Procter & Gamble.
When he learned the family business was for sale, he swooped in and purchased it from his cousin.
“I wanted to keep it in the family,” he said.
In August, Patrick officially became the next generation of the Kern family to operate the long-standing restaurant.
“I always had the itch to run my own restaurant,” he said. “I love to cook and host parties. It was a perfect time.”
Patrick’s entrepreneurial spirit is deeply rooted in the Kern family history and in the Back Mountain. His family owned several businesses in the region, including Kern Brother’s Beer Distributor in the Dallas Shopping Center and the former White Horse Tavern.
Patrick’s experiences in the hospitality industry and as an executive have taught him not to change a recipe for success. He is committed to keeping mainstay menu items such as the stuffed warm lobster tail.
However, his vast experiences in traveling exposed the Back Mountain resident to new recipes that he added to the menu, including crab cakes Benedict and a seafood omelet.
Patrons will also notice new expanded hours that include breakfast, lunch and dinner serving times.
Chef Patricia Sprague ensures all dishes meet the quality expected by guests.
“It (the restaurant) has always been about providing good food and a family atmosphere,” he said.
And to help him continue the family tradition, Patrick’s sisters, Angie, Lisa, Michelle and Tracy are helping him by waitressing and decorating the restaurant.
“I want to bring it (Lum’s Fernbrook Inn) back to its glory days,” he said.