Dennis Hiltner

The Gourmet Shop

I’ve been working in Five Points since August of 1977. I was in the Marine Corps – got out 1976 – then came to Columbia, and worked as a stockbroker for a year. Linda and I opened The Gourmet Shop – a lunch, brunch and dinner café, kitchen & specialties store and wine, cheese and fine foods shop – in 1979.

The first time I was brought to Columbia by the people who hired me as a stockbroker, they brought me to Five Points. This is one of my favorite parts of town. Five Points is a small community and I like that. I’ve always been a small town boy; I came from a small town.

I think that Five Points has a place in a lot of people’s hearts.

Five Points is special because of its small community aspect; it’s a little shopping and entertainment area. Our customers have a lot to do with it. There’s this interaction between customers and the shop owners and restaurant owners, so when people come here, you just know who they are.

  • In Our Hearts

    I think that Five Points has a place in a lot of people’s hearts. Either they went to the university, or grew up here in Columbia, but somehow Five Points has always been a place that has been attractive to people of all different kinds.

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  • Around the Neighborhood

    I’ve always lived close to Five Points, because I like not only Five Points, but the areas around Five Points. Five Points happens to be one of those little shopping entertainment areas that’s right in the middle of people. I don’t think my outdoor café would work in any place else in the city.

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