Iris Café: Restaurant of the Week

Leslie Pariseau

Iris Café is where you bring last night's date this morning for eggs and coffee. It's also where you treat your mom to lunch and tea. And where you spend Sunday reading the paper and Monday "working from home." Iris Café is the place you wish existed on your block. Along a leafy stretch of Brooklyn Heights below the BQE, Iris acts like it's been there for a century. The old floors creak pleasantly under topsiders and Keds and around 4 P.M., neighborhood moms roll in for a carton of Feather Ridge eggs and a quart of local milk. The young staff bops around greeting neighborhood regulars and delivering plates of pretty, but heartily composed sandwiches, like the curried smoked turkey salad ($9) on toasted cranberry-pecan bread and ploughman baguettes of Surryano ham (Virginia's answer to Spain's Serrano ham), smoked cheddar, tangy quick pickles and apples ($9). One weekend afternoon a table of flanneled and ruddy friends gathered for breakfast over the happy news of a bun in the oven, while nearby a rumpled and glowing couple shared alternating bites of an actual bun --dense and chewy, rolled up into a sticky fist of raisins and cinnamon ($3) -- that would go well with a steaming cup of Stumptown French-pressed coffee. At our own table, vibrant yellow yolks ribboned from softly boiled eggs over some of the most perfect ham and cheddar biscuits ($5) to be found and a snickerdoodle cookie ($1) were quickly devoured, leaving crumbs amongst the morning papers. Perhaps you won't wander all the way over to Columbia Place for these simple pleasures, but you'll wish for your own Iris, all the same.
Iris Café
20 Columbia Pl.
(718) 722-7395

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