New Farm's Bistro Arlette has changed hands. Last weekend was the last of trading for the French bistro in Merthyr Road.

Former owner Linton Smith is keeping his cards close to his chest, saying only that he "has a few irons in the fire". The new owners are the crew from the popular Pablo up the road.

“The purchase of Bistro Arlette came about after Amy, my wife and business partner, decided Pablo was too small for us to start up a dinner service so we started looking for another venue," says Pablo's Michael Bates. “We spoke to Linton after hearing it was on the market and loved the space and location.”

Bates says that, along with partners Lee and Kalan Douglas, they are looking to create "a casual dining and drinking space with a flexible menu and a style and attitude similar to the popular Pablo's".

“It will be a friendly and fun environment with top-notch service and food that is simple but well sourced and executed and outside the box as much as possible," Bates says.

“We intend to focus on cocktails, house-infused rums and gin with a focus towards the classics turned on their heads.”

In a cheeky hat-tip to their other venue – and a notorious Colombian drug lord – they're naming the new venue Escobar Kitchen and Bar. Bates says they hope to open early to mid-April.