The Grapevine Set to Reopen

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In 2001, the popular College Station restaurant The Grapevine suddenly closed leaving hundreds of loyal customers wondering what happened.

The Grapevine then sat on the market for three years with no sale.

Patsy Zabel was the original owner. She wanted out because the nearly three decades of running the place caught up to her. Her wish was for someone else to take over.

"I would of loved to have that, but I didn't ever dream that was going to happen," said Zabel.

No need to start dreaming now, because her wish came true.

The Grapevine is getting a makeover from a long-time customer and new owner, Jeanine Sawyer.

It's been her dream to buy the place. Jeanine and her daughter Jodi hated seeing such a popular restaurant sit vacant.

"We'd the Grapevine was still open, and I think most people in this town that have been here for any length of time still do that," said Sawyer.

But, Jeanine and Jodi have plans to reopen the restaurant sometime in October.

Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Royce Hickman said it's rare to see the same restaurant reborn.

"It's just such a positive thing when a facility reopens because you've got the recreation of jobs, you've got some more input into the economy," said Hickman.

The restaurant will have new items on the menu, but keep around some old recipes like the twice baked potato, gourmet salads with Patsy's famous thousand island dressing and of course, chicken dumplings.

"That's the first thing out of everybody's mouth when they hear the Grapevine is reopening. 'Are you going to have the twice baked potato?' Of course we are," said Executive Director Tammy Selvera.

Jeanine hopes the new Grapevine will remind people of the old, but with her own personal touch.