Josh Moscrop, a chef by trade with a background in catering and hospitality, is venturing on his first solo restaurant project with his father-in-law – who runs the Scarborough Arms pub – having previously operated several other businesses.
The new bar and restaurant on Aberdeen Walk, at the former Scarborough Evening News and Mercury newspaper offices, will be called Elysium Bar & BBQ.
“It’s just exciting,” Mr Moscrop said. “Times are hard, but it’s never a good time to open a restaurant. We’ve got a good relationship with the owners so it just feels like the right time to open it.”
The venue will serve breakfast, brunches and lunches during the day and will open as a cocktail and champagne bar in the evening, alongside a restaurant.
Mr Moscrop said the restaurant will also operate a barbecue as “we’re going to cook everything over flame and charcoal. Everything will be flame-cooked and barbecued, is what we’re trying to go for”.
The daytime trade will be captured with an offer of locally sourced produce, with the business currently in talks with a coffee brewer from Filey, as well as loose-leaf tea, own-branded coffee and hot chocolates.
Traditional breakfasts, such as a Full English, will not be served, but the business has instead opted to go down the route of offering pancakes. At lunch times, they will provide steak sandwiches and similar “high-end” meals.
Mr Moscrop said: “We are wanting to be family-friendly and dogs are welcome in the daytime, reflecting a mix of everyone. In the evening we want to try and open up high-end, but we’ll still be family-friendly.
“We’re going to have an area sectioned off as a cocktail lounge, separate to the restaurant, so a mix of families who are eating and create a sort of venue where people can spend an evening, rather than just pop in for a drink.”
The building’s interior has been completely gutted and no original features remain, however, the new restaurant will be furnished in a gentleman’s club style, with lots of leather and greenery on the walls to create a “moody look” inside.
However, “outside, we want to the keep the marble front and keep it quite simple as the front of the building is amazing,” Mr Moscrop said.
He added: “We’ve been looking for a premises for 18 months now, but that specific venue is different to anything else in Scarborough that we’ve seen with the frontage and the location.
“That building is something we’ve always walked past and thought ‘amazing’ with the heritage and the way it looks, it would be an ideal venue.”
Mr Moscrop has applied for an alcohol licence from Scarborough Council to serve drinks between 10am and 11pm, seven days a week.
The former Scarborough Evening News and Mercury newspaper offices were previously home to Bentley’s Coffee Shop, however, the well-loved family business closed for good in April due to “unforeseen circumstances and ever-increasing pricing pressures from energy and other providers”.
The property features a space of similar size downstairs, which Mr Moscrop hopes to open up in the future to provide a different range of activities, which could include a hire venue for parties or cocktail-making classes.
The new business will open on December 1, offering lunches breakfast and cocktails. The barbecue and restaurant will follow at the end of December.
Mr Moscrop hopes to create up to 20 new jobs with the venture, and those interested in a role can contact him directly via email at [email protected]