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Beans & Cornbread: A Soulful Bistro Restaurant Review: This 80-seat spot is done up in a sophisticated black, green and sand-hued palette and is decked with vintage Life magazine covers of the Will Mastin Trio, Coretta King and Diana Ross. It attracts not only crowds who grew up on Hoppin' John and fried chicken but also those to whom down-home dishes are a revelation. Chef John Arnold’s experience in upscale restaurants becomes evident in dishes ranging from the meatloaf and baby-back ribs to the collard greens and country pork chops, which somehow seem more refined. Warm cornbread and bite-size sweet potato muffins accompany main dishes. Try the sautéed catfish with just-dusted crust or salmon croquettes in roasted red pepper sauce. And don't miss the candied sweet potatoes that hit just the right flavor note. Like to dine early? Then the $10 early bird specials Monday through Friday from 4 p.m. until 7 p.m. are for you. And, of course, we'd be remiss if we didn't mention the grape Kool-Aid martinis.