Worthing is set to lose a staple of its restaurant scene as its owners eye expansion across Sussex and beyond.
Food in New Street will close its doors this weekend (January 11/12) after 15 years in the town, after another local business bought the restaurant.
Owner Andy Sparsis, whose Proto Group also owns The Fat Greek Taverna and Fish Factory, said the sale heralded an exciting new time for the business.
"It's sad in some ways, as I've had it for 15 years, but it's a really exciting time for Proto," he said.
"I think over the 15 years, Food has been the premium restaurant in Worthing and opened the door for more restaurants and bars to open in the town. It's been a huge part of Worthing's nighttime economy, and still is.
"But it gives an opportunity for a new place to start a business in the town. There's exciting times ahead for Proto and exciting times ahead for Worthing. We also want to thank our customers who helped us get where we are today."
Food is set to be replaced by a karaoke bar, operated by an as yet unidentified business local to the town.
Andy said no jobs would be lost in the sale, with all of Food's employees being given roles in other areas of the business.
The sale would allow Proto to expand its Fat Greek arm, he said, including an opening in Eastbourne's new Beacon shopping centre 'before the end of 2020'.
The group was eyeing a partnership with the Beacon's owner, Legal and General, that could see Fat Greeks pop up in shopping centres across the country. Andy said the potential expansion would be good news for Worthing. "It's a local Worthing business that will be seen all over the country," he said.