Todd English’s Olives is, Um, Transitioning

Bellagio - Olives - Dining Room Wide Angle BEL00555

Olives is not closing. Ok, well, let me clarify: Todd English’s rustic Mediterranean restaurant at Bellagio is closing, but not in the sense that you think “closing” really means. According to a statement from MGM Resorts International, Bellagio has chosen not to renew its contract with English, who opened the restaurant along with the property 15 years ago as a partner.

But ATE (After Todd English), Olives employees and its chef, Brad Skougard, will keep their jobs, and Bellagio will continue to operate Olives as it is through the end of the year, until it transitions into a new name and concept by early 2014.

This makes the second outpost of English’s restaurant to go quietly into the good night; the Olives flagship in Boston closed earlier this year. The Las Vegas Olives’ star has waned in the past few years, despite its occupation of prime real estate on Lake Bellagio. Todd English PUB has been doing gangbusters at CityCenter, however. And perhaps it all falls into place as the right time for Bellagio to breathe new life into its restaurant collection.

But just so we’re clear, Olives is NOT closing. Maybe the more astute statement would be to cross out Todd English’s name above the Olives sign for the time being, and then quietly take down the sign when no one is looking.