atterned tablecloths and lace curtains will be taken out of the Blethering Place Tea Room and Restaurant -- a 35- year-old Oak Bay institution -- when it closes to make way for a new bistro.
Ken Agate, who bought and expanded the existing Blethering Place in 1981, is shutting down his restaurant, known for its English-style food and decor, on Jan. 30. Agate is ending with a celebration of Waitangi Day, a national holiday in his native New Zealand.
New owners Bart Reed and Petr Prusa are aiming to spend a month renovating the leased space to transform it into the Oak Bay Bistro, featuring a chef from the renowned Wickaninnish Inn in Tofino. Prusa is an owner of Floyd's Diner and Reed is a partner in the Mocha House, the Beagle Pub, and Island Meat and Seafood, all in Cook Street Village.
Like the Blethering Place, the bistro will open for breakfast. Reed expects it will have longer operating hours, closing at midnight. The hope is to open March 1.