New and improved, the Prince Street Café is back with a whole new look and the same relaxed, stay-as-long-as you-like comfort.
The cozy, brightly-colored interior has been replaced with what owner Crystal Weaver calls “industrial chic.” It’s sleek and streamlined with subdued coffee-inspired colors such as mocha, espresso and cream. There is a lot of wood, from the polished wooden floors to the pinewood benches. There is even a big farmhouse-style gathering table with metal chairs.
“It’s perfect for group get-togethers like meetings and book clubs,” says Weaver, who has been an owner for five years.
The social environment is key to Prince Street Café’s presence in downtown Lancaster, right across from the Fulton Theatre. Customers range from Millersville University and Pennsylvania College of Art Design students, to theatre and symphony patrons, to people working on laptops or grabbing breakfast or lunch.
It’s also a popular meeting place for casual first dates, or meeting that online dating match for the first time. There have been more than a few happy anniversary celebrations for couples who clicked when they first saw each other in person at the Prince Street Café, Weaver says.
“I’d say that Prince Street Café is all about fostering friendships and relationships,” Weaver says. “We’re not here to rush people or move tables.”
Her aim in decorating the Prince Street Café was threefold — to have a coffee shop with outstanding coffee beverages, to serve fresh great-tasting healthy food, and to create an atmosphere where people feel relaxed and comfortable.
The staff has a lot to do with that. They enjoy interacting with customers, but are also more than happy to leave people alone who want some privacy. They are friendly and helpful to people who are looking for places to go, especially guests at the nearby conference center and hotel.
Weaver grew up on a dairy farm near Millersville and had a candy stand at Central Market, so she knows all about the fresh bounty of Lancaster County. She has also been a city dweller for 12 years, so she also knows about the vibrancy of downtown Lancaster.
She uses milk and other dairy products from her family’s Pine View Dairy. Much of the fresh meats, cheeses and produce come from Central Market, which is just steps away. Everything is made to order, by each customer’s request.
The beverages include coffee, lattes, cappuccinos, espresso, tea, chai, Cocoa Joe (a mix of coffee and hot chocolate), London Log (tea with vanilla steamed milk) and more. On hot summer days and evenings, the milkshakes, iced coffee and tea beverages, fruit smoothies and refreshing lemon mint freeze take the heat away. There are even coffee smoothies and mint Oreo smoothies.
The star of breakfast is the Breakfast Burrito, which has eggs, black bean spread, cheese and house made salsa in a lightly grilled white tortilla. The Morning Oliver puts a new twist on a breakfast sandwich, with egg and Havarti cheese on a multi-grain ciabatta roll spread with house-made olive tapenade. There are also egg-white frittatas, house-made baked oatmeal, French toast souffle and fruit-and-yogurt parfait.
There is a definite accent on healthy. Salads include Tuscan Caesar with grilled chicken and grape tomatoes; Caribbean Mango Salad with strawberries, mango and toasted coconut; Wasabi Tuna with pineapple, mango and crunchy chow mein noodles; and Fiesta Salad with salsa and avocado.
The sandwiches are just as healthy and imaginative, and include the Smoked Turkey Oliver with roasted turkey breast and tapenade; Strawberry Wheat Wrap with chicken, strawberries and cinnamon pecans; Italian paninis; and a variety of quesadillas, including the Pizzadilla and TexMex Veggiedilla. There are also freshly made daily soups and sweet-treat desserts.
Catering to all their customers’ needs, Prince Street Café added a grab-and-go section, where busy people can grab a cup of coffee, a ready-made sandwich or yogurt in a hurry. For those who like to linger, the remodeling provided 13 extra seats in which to do so.
“The comments have been pretty favorable about the new look, although a few regulars seemed disconcerted that their spot had changed,” Weaver says. “But I think they’ll have a new favorite spot in no time.”
Just what you’d expect from a local neighborhood café with a fresh, new outlook.
NAME: Prince Street Café
LOCATION: 15 N. Prince St.
HOURS: Mon.-Sat. 6:30 a.m.-11 p.m.; Sun. 6:30 a.m.-3 p.m.
PRICE RANGE: $2.45 iced coffee, $3.00 cup of soup, $4.00 Lemon Mint Freeze, $4.50 Breakfast Burrito, $6.85 cheese quesadilla, $7.50 Caribbean Mango Salad, $7.85 Turkey Oliver, $8 Strawberry Wheat Wrap
CONTACT: 397-1505, princestreetcafe.com