The Elk and Pea has new owners Leeroy and Sophia Peterson
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The Elk and Pea has new owners Leeroy and Sophia Peterson

The Elk and Pea in Braddon has new owners - Sydney bartending identity Leeroy Petersen and wife and business partner Sophia.

The couple moved from Sydney earlier this year to be closer to Sophia's family and to have a better lifestyle with their young son.

The Elk and Pea new owners Sophia and Leeroy Petersen.

The Elk and Pea new owners Sophia and Leeroy Petersen. Credit:Jay Cronan

"We were looking around at different spaces and areas and we fell in love with the Elk and Pea," Leeroy says. "It's a beautiful space."

And he's sold on the capital. "I love it. We've been in Canberra for four months, we absolutely love it," he says.

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Petersen is no stranger to hospitality - he's a champion flair bartender and says he has made appearances on Australia's Got Talent and the X Factor.

The Braddon eatery, previously owned by Bria Sydney of Knightsbridge and Parlour Wine Room, closed for a quick makeover but Petersen says he won't be changing too much.

"We're keeping the name, we love what Bria has done for it. We just need to change the decor a little bit," he says.

Petersen says the Elk and Pea will have more of a morning cafe vibe under his stewardship.

"We've got ONA Coffee on board, we're really trying to go for a beautiful cafe and really promote the breakfasts - they've gone under the radar a bit," he says.

At night there will be cocktails and dinner. "We want people to have a glass of rose, sit back and watch the night go," Petersen says. "We've just built more open tables so it's a bit more shared concept, and the menu is definitely a share menu."

In Sydney, he owned the Paddington pub The Village Inn which suffered a social media storm last year after a ban on high vis attire.

Petersen says they already have friends in the form of next door neighbours Autolyse and hope to work together with the cult bakery. "We're calling it the Upper Lonsdale Precinct," he jokes.

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