Le Grenier restaurant is up for sale in Vineyard Haven

Jean Dupon, longtime owner of the French restaurant Le Grenier and La Cave du Grenier, a café downstairs, has decided to sell. — File photo by Ralph Stewart

The French restaurant Le Grenier and La Cave du Grenier, a café downstairs, are for sale in Vineyard Haven for $1.6 million. Owner Jean Dupon recently listed the two businesses and two-story building at 96 Main Street with Kendall and Kendall Real Estate.

Mr. Dupon said the two eateries would remain open until a sale is complete and papers signed.

“A lot of people are under the wrong impression that I’m closing right away, but until a sale, I’m still here,” he said, adding with a laugh, “Jean Dupon is alive and well in Vineyard Haven.”

Open for 35 years, Le Grenier has operated as the Island’s longest-running chef-owned restaurant, according to Mr. Dupon. Le Grenier’s original owner, who opened the restaurant in 1978, asked Mr. Dupon to be his chef the next summer. Mr. Dupon not only stayed for the summer but bought the restaurant from his friend in 1979 and the building in 1985.

In addition to Le Grenier, Mr. Dupon also ran a pastry shop and café on the first floor for about 10 years. He closed it in the 1990’s and rented the space to two bagel shop owners, consecutively. Both businesses failed.

Last winter, Mr. Dupon decided to reclaim the first floor space. He made extensive renovations and opened La Cave there in late June.

Mr. Dupon said he recently celebrated his 69th birthday and decided to sell his businesses because he is ready to relax.

“I love it, but it’s been a haul, seven days a week, 14, 15 hours a day sometimes,” he said. “And I’m not a young chicken anymore.”