AUSTIN - A quick peak inside The Tavern shows a melding of old and new: flat screen TVs hanging above, scrawlings carved into the bar's surface.
"The coolest part is you see great-grandfather, grandfather, dad and kid -- you know, four generations of people sitting here watching a baseball game together," explained Ellis Winstanley, the bar's president.
It's a generational experience Luke Saldivar has enjoyed. Growing up, he ate at the restaurant with his family. On Tuesday, he was back enjoying a happy hour drink with a friend.
"I'll see people here that graduated from my high school maybe eight years back," said Saldivar, as he noted the bar's popularity for get-togethers during the holiday season.
Winstanley and his group, Tradelogic Corporation, are selling the revered West 12th Street watering hole.
"You can say you own it, whatever, but you're just a part of it along its storyline," explained Winstanley.
In 1916, the property was designed as a grocery, operating as The Enfield Grocery Store until 1929. On the sidewalk outside the bar's entrance, the words "ENFIELD STORE" are etched into the concrete.
After serving as a grocery, it turned into a steakhouse, which would eventually become The Tavern.
In a city that's faced a trend of other older businesses closing down, Winstanley says that won't happen here.
"It wouldn't get done that way because it wouldn't economically make sense," said Winstanley.
So far, they've received about 20 inquiries, with nine parties signing non-disclosure agreements to further evaluate the space.
"We like it the way it is," said Saldivar.
"It’s just got that feel about it, you walk in and it immediately feels warm and positive. And it’s just a super unique place that’s easy to connect to," Winstanley said.
For Saldivar and others, it offers a more local-centric alternative than the more-heavily trafficked downtown bars.
"I think that's something small towns have, and that they'll always have. But a city like Austin needs to kind of keep that to keep those people together," said Saldivar.
After owning the bar for five years, Winstanley explained the decision to put it up for sale.
"We thought about it periodically over the years. This is the kind of place where people will randomly come up and say, 'Oh man, how much do you want for it. I'll buy it right now!' And it's always maybe after a beer or two," joked Winstanley. "Only recently (we) really started to think about it. I've got a lot of other businesses and I've got little kids at home."
Tradelogic Corporation owns six restaurants in the Austin area.
While the bar is up for sale, the 101-year old building it's in is not. There's about two decades left on the bar's lease.
The ownership group is still accepting offers on the property.
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