The owners of Olive Marketplace and Café, Olive Catering and the Saint & the Sinner say sales are in the works for all three operations.

Jake and Tabitha Crenshaw, the owner/operators who source local ingredients for fresh made foods spanning every meal of the day and after at the two downtown restaurants, expect the sales to close by the end of the year.

Until then, they are not going public with the identities of the new owners. Those operators will introduce themselves and their plans for the eateries when the transitions take place.

The prospective sales come less than two months after the Crenshaws announced their plans to list the businesses in order to scale back and focus more time on family. Originally it did not include plans to sell the catering portion of the business.

However, the new owner of the cafe wanted the catering operation as part of the deal.

The couple want to continue in hospitality but have no immediate plans.

“We’re excited to see what the future brings for the culinary scene in Walla Walla, and for our unknown next adventure, said Executive Chef Jake Crenshaw.

If all goes accordingly, the transitions at the two restaurants will be vastly different.

Olive Marketplace & Café and Olive Catering will function seamlessly through the ownership turnover, Tabitha Crenshaw said.

The new owner has indicated intentions to maintain the current offerings, as well as many key staff members. That includes Chef Jose Meza.

The Main Street restaurant’s Tuesday night Pizza for the People, Thursday’s Tasting and Tunes, and Santa pictures every Sunday leading up to Christmas will continue.

The Saint & the Sinner, however, will closed this month in preparation for a new concept. Dec. 9 will be the final night to get the Righteous Tacos and Wicked Margaritas around which the Mexican cantina developed its identity a year ago when it was re-imagined from the Crenshaws original First Avenue launch of the Ox & Cart.

When the new concept will be introduced was not known by Crenshaw. She said the six full-time employees there have been invited to interview first with the new owners.

Staff at both eateries have met the prospective new owners.

Olive employs between 25 and 30 people, Crenshaw said.

“Knowing that a great majority of our staff are able to retain their positions and grow in new

ways as new owners and perspectives take the helm, makes this bittersweet moment easier,” she said in the announcement.

“Both restaurants simply wouldn’t be the destination dining spots they are without this skilled staff. They are the spirit and talent that makes it all possible, so we have every faith that they will all continue with new owners to great success.”

Vicki Hillhouse can be reached at vickihillhouse@wwub.com or 526-8321.

Vicki Hillhouse can be reached at 509-526-8321, vickihillhouse@wwub.com or on Twitter at https://twitter.com/VickiHillhouse.

Vicki covers business and economic development, including tourism, the Port of Walla Walla and the Strictly Business column, as well as features. She has been reporting for the Union-Bulletin since late 2001.