Iris Cafe's new takeaway shop in Brooklyn Heights is like the best version of a neighborhood bodega. There's a deli in the back with sandwiches and salads made-to-order, rows of colorful drinks in the fridge case, and chocolates near the register. All of the products featured here are either locally sourced or personal favorites of owner Rachel Graville (and she has great taste).
Graville opened the cafe in late 2009, which just this month started dinner service. The original cafe's menu—avocado toast, bluefish salads, and more breakfasty/lunchy items available all day—can now be found at the takeaway shop a few doors down, while the cafe has transitioned to full restaurant mode with waitstaff.
So if you just want a quick sandwich, or you ran out of Corn Flakes and milk, head over to Iris Take Away. It's smaller than the average bodega but still offers quite a bit: Del's Lemonade, Red Jacket juices, plenty of gluten-free products (Graville's dad is gluten-intolerant so she's especially committed to stocking those), glass bottles of Battenkill Valley milk, Cacao Prieto chocolates (from the Red Hook factory), Stewart and Clarke's lip balms (created by a Food & Wine editor), and jars of slaws. "My philosophy is we should all be eating more lacto-fermented foods," said Graville.
There's also a bulk bin corner with popcorn kernels, oats, other grains, and Iris's homemade granola available by the shovelful.
Recently there was a sign up for a roast lamb sandwich. "We'll be testing some stuff here for the restaurant." So don't be surprised if you see lamb pop up on the dinner menu at the restaurant.