As West Columbia continues to grow, so do the food options. The Hideout in WeCo, Crepes et Croissants owner Laurent Prescelti’s newest project, fuses French-inspired food and the cafe atmosphere.
The cafe features a tree, made from sticks and vines that grew on the outside of the building before it became The Hideout. Wrapping around throughout the first floor, this tree hints at the meaning behind the name of the breakfast and brunch spot.
The name, Hideout in WeCo, comes from owner Prescelti’s childhood home. When he was younger, he and his friends would meet at a tree they referred to as "the hideout." Prescelti said the tree that once encased the restaurant, and now fills it, reminded Prescelti of his childhood hideout, and WeCo is short for West Columbia.
“I always kept an eye on West Columbia and what was going on in this area here," Prescelti said. "I always thought there would be a good potential and great things to do around [the] river."
The Hideout is designed to give customers a laid-back atmosphere, one where they can order whenever they would like and stay for however long they need.
The menu meets cafe breakfast and brunch demands with everything from smoothies, coffees and teas to sandwiches topped with edible flowers, toasts featuring fig spread and many other French pastries. These pastries and the coffee are made fresh every morning by one of the managers, according to manager Julia Wolff.
“We have everything, kind of, where [guests] pick it up cafe style. We don’t want them to feel pressured by us or overbearing in any way. So, just kind of laid back and just a place to hang out,” Wolff said.
This set-up provides an easy grab-and-go coffee or the perfect amount of time to peruse your options and catch up with friends.
"I always have to bring my friends, or the one day I’m off, they’re doing new specials, so I have to come try it," Wolff said.
The Hideout has a small staff, so forming bonds with each other is something Wolff said she enjoys, along with coming in to visit. Wolff and assistant manager Raili Burton agreed the restaurant has a good work atmosphere, too.
“It’s a really nice place to work. I love my coworkers; I love the atmosphere of this coffee shop; I like that it's new and something different in this area,” Burton said.
Prescelti said he plans to soon apply for a beer and wine license and keep his doors open during the evening once COVID-19 is a thing of the past. He said he plans to “do something very relaxed, like you can meet some friends ... [and] have a cheese tray or a charcuterie tray."
Prescelti also said he wants to open up more options with French and European pastries.
The Hideout is undergoing renovations outdoors and landscaping to accommodate for the warmer season, and inside it is opening to the public three of the four rooms upstairs. The last room will be available for private events.
The Hideout in WeCo is currently in a soft opening phase and will remain that way until the renovations are completed. Prescelti said he hopes to have the renovations complete soon and plans on having a grand opening sometime in late March or early April.
Students can visit The Hideout in WeCo on 118 State Street from 8 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. on Monday through Saturday and from 9 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. on Sunday.