This fall visitors to the main location of Richland Library will be able to check out some culinary delights in addition to a few good books.
In partnership with chef Sarah Simmons, the library will feature The Café which will offer some new tastes from Simmons as well as a selection of Rise Gourmet Goods & Bakeshop signature items. Simmons is opening The Café with her husband and business partner, Aaron Hoskins. The eatery will feature beverages, baked goods, snacks, sandwiches and salads in a newly renovated space on the library’s first floor. In addition, according to Simmons, the eatery will host pop-ups with local food entrepreneurs.
"The library has always been one of my favorite places in Columbia, and I'm thrilled with the opportunity to play a part in all of the incredible programs they offer,” said Simmons, a graduate of Spring Valley High School who made a name for herself as a world-renowned chef with her restaurants City Grit and Birds & Bubbles--both located in New York City. Simmons became a household name in her hometown when she opened Rise Gourmet Goods & Bakeshop on Harden Street in Five Points in the fall of 2015. She closed the location earlier this year with plans to relocate Rise to a larger, dine-in space elsewhere in Columbia.
Throughout the fall, Simmons and Hoskins will operate The Café while putting the operational systems of the program in place to turn The Cafe into a restaurant operator residency program for the food and beverage industry. This program will give aspiring restauranteurs a low-risk opportunity to experience the day-to-day running of a restaurant. Working closely with Richland Library, they will select the participants for the program which is scheduled to commence in January 2018.
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"I believe this partnership will help Columbia’s budding food entrepreneurs get a feel for what it’s like to run the day-to-day of a café with the support of our team, essentially allowing them to get their feet wet without the risk of drowning,” Simmons said.
Richland Library is located at 1431 Assembly St.