Fifth Floor, the hushed and sophisticated fine dining venue at the Palomar Hotel that's earned many accolades over the past decade and a half, is shuttering after the new year to make way for a more casual, cocktail-focused concept. As Eater is reporting, "Trick Dog and Maven were named as reference points" for the new, unnamed concept, which will also have small plates from executive chef David Bazirgan.

Bazirgan tells Inside Scoop, "It’s still going to be my food, and the same high level of everything, from produce to cooking." But it sounds like the Kimpton Group is looking to de-formalize the place, much the way the Ritz did with its Dining Room that became Parallel 37 last year, and as the Westin St. Francis did in 2010 transforming the former Michael Mina into Bourbon Steak.

The new restaurant will also have a new outdoor patio area in what's now that unoccupied, gravel-lined atrium outside the restaurant's windows, and it will be getting a fire pit.

Fifth Floor's last day will be January 17, after which it will close for several months to undergo a remodel. Also reportedly staying on board for the switch, along with Bazirgan, are pastry chef Francis Ang, and bar manager Brian Means.

The restaurant has been a significant player in the city's high-end dining scene for much of its life, though it's tended to get a little less attention in the last five years or so despite serving some excellent food. Chef Jennie Lorenzo preceded Bazirgan, leaving her post in 2011, and prior to her there had been a string of accomplished chefs, including Melissa Perello, who went on to open Frances; Aqua chef George Morrone; Laurent Manrique who moved on to Aqua and then opened Cafe de la Presse; Charlie Kleinman, who went on to open Wexler's; and Jake Des Voignes, who now co-owns Local's Corner and Local Mission Eatery.

In semi-related news, and through the new year, pastry chef Francis Ang, who comes from the Philippines, is offering a four-course dessert tasting menu for $25 with proceeds benefiting typhoon relief. The restaurant will also be hosting a typhoon relief fundraiser in early January.

[Inside Scoop]