Oliver's Restaurant changes ownership after 30 years

February 26, 2013 Updated Feb 26, 2013 at 7:53 AM EDT

By James Fink, Buffalo Business First

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February 26, 2013 Updated Feb 26, 2013 at 7:53 AM EDT

For the first time in 30 years, Oliver's Restaurant has a new owner.

Henry Gorino, who has owned Oliver's for the past three decades, has sold the Delaware Avenue restaurant and its catering business to David Schutte, owner of the Creekview Restaurant in Williamsville. The deal closed on Feb. 22. Terms were not disclosed.

Gorino is retaining ownership of his three other local restaurants, Sienna, 800 Maple and Rocco's. In addition, Gorino will stay with Oliver's and Oliver's Catering as a consultant for the next five years.

"It's very emotional for me," Gorino said. "These are my babies, but Dave is someone I believe can take Oliver's to the next level."

Oliver's is one of the region's oldest restaurants. The Delaware Avenue eatery has roots going back to 1936. Schutte will be the restaurant's fifth owner.

The Creekview, located on Main Street in the Village of Williamsville, goes back to the 1940s. Schutte bought the Creekside in 1996.

Schutte could not be reached for comment.

The deal goes back to late last year when Schutte and Gorino were talking and Gorino broached the subject of selling Oliver's. From that informal conversation, the deal was born.

Gorino, 61, has been working in Buffalo restaurant circles more than four decades including a long stint running Valentine's, which neighbored Buffalo City Hall.

Oliver's Catering not only handles private parties and corporate functions, but is the exclusive caterer at Kleinhans Music Hall and also works in such venues as Shea's Performing Arts Center, the Buffalo Zoo and Buffalo Science Museum.