David Wilhelm, the creative force behind such Orange County eateries as Chimayo Grill in Newport Beach and French 75 and Sorrento Grille in Laguna Beach, is taking over the operations of the restaurant at the Sports Club/Irvine.
Wilhelm said Tuesday that he expects to make major changes to the 120-seat Club Bar & Grill, including a new name, look and menu that Wilhelm said will be "fairly eclectic." A new name has not been chosen.
"Given the fact that it is a sports club, we are trying to do something that would be categorized as upscale casual," Wilhelm said.
The existing restaurant will be open until next month, then will be closed for several weeks during renovation. Wilhelm said he expects the eatery to make its debut sometime in September. It has not been decided if the restaurant will be open to anyone except the club's approximately 7,000 members.