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Pabu to look like Ouzo Bay, LAMILL to be completely renovated

June 13, 2014
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Pabu, left, will look more like Ouzo Bay, right

Alex Smith says Pabu, left, will look like Ouzo Bay, right.

As Greek philosopher Heraclitus said: “There is nothing permanent except change.” After a weekend of absorbing the news that Pabu and LAMILL are closing, we were finally able to get an early idea about what those planned changes are. Alex Smith and George Aligeorgas, owners of The Atlas Group and Ouzo Bay, have taken over the locations and have major changes planned for both spaces.

As recent as two days ago The Atlas Group still had plans to re-open LAMILL as Le Corbeau on June 16th as a similar coffee concept, but as of today Smith tells us those plans have changed and now the space will be home to a completely new restaurant and bar with plans of opening later this summer. There’s no word on why or what caused the change in plans, but it’s looking like The Four Seasons is going to be quite dusty in the coming months.

Pabu’s location, which we know more about, is receiving a major overhaul and while the concept is still Japanese, Smith tells us that the menu will be more focused than Pabu’s, serving mainly appetizers, entrees, and sushi, not unlike revered places like Nobu and Morimoto—quite the pedigree they’re aiming for. The menu will be developed by two chefs—one for sushi and one for the rest of the menu—who Smith and his team are currently on the search for.

The interior, which is being designed by Patrick Sutton (who previously designed Pazo, Cinghiale, and pretty much every other Foreman Wolf Restaurant), will be turned into a swankier look than the more minimally appointed Pabu, with a  focus on creating more of a post-dinner lounge vibe similar, Smith explains, to what they have at Ouzo Bay.

One particular design element that perked up our ears was the possibility of expanding the windows and removing some of the walls on the west side, thus opening up the restaurant to the stones-throw-away harbor view—something Smith says Pabu never took full advantage of. That, in addition to a much larger and fully-realized patio area that we’re told will be in a Japanese Garden style, they hope will create a more dramatic entrance.

Smith was quick to point out that “our main focus is locals,” explaining that although Four Seasons guests are a great, the only way they feel they can be successful is to fully engage people from within the city and surrounding counties. With such stiff high-end restaurant competition in Harbor East, including their soon-to-be neighbors Wit and Wisdom, they have their work cut out for them. But if the success of Ouzo Bay is any indication of what they’re capable of, these changes might stick for a while.