Iris Café sounds like the coffeehouse Brooklyn Heights has been waiting for. It's a cozy, friendly spot, Peter says, but most important to Chowhounds, its food is way better than the neighborhood norm. This is "a smaller, nicer, much much tastier, more mellow Tazza," he says. "The menu is very, very limited but everything I've had has been A+ for a coffee house/café."
The ploughman sandwich is a pub lunch on a baguette with upmarket touches: serrano ham, smoked cheddar, sliced apple, and onion jam. Baked goods, savory or sweet, are exceptional. Ham and cheddar biscuits are studded with chunks of high-quality meat. Sticky buns are worth getting there early for ("while they're still warm," Peter advises). For breakfast, try oatmeal with sautéed apple and a drizzle of caramel sauce, or eggs and soldiers: soft-boiled eggs with lightly buttered toast strips. Coffee is from the well-regarded West Coast roaster Stumptown.
There's another hound-worthy breakfast at Café Mei Mei in Cobble Hill, which just started serving it on weekdays. BGRose has had sensational cornflake-crusted French toast, fried eggs with jalapeño and Gouda, and fresh-squeezed blood orange juice. "The place is lovely in the morning," he adds, "with sun streaming in from the back windows." Here, too, the coffee's from Stumptown; "what else?" BGRose shrugs, "they now own all of Brooklyn."
Iris Café [Brooklyn Heights]
20 Columbia Place (between Joralemon and State streets), Brooklyn
Café Mei Mei [Cobble Hill]
231 Court Street (between Warren and Baltic streets), Brooklyn