There is something that you will have to accept in order to spare yourself a whole lot of grief: the service at Elk is slow. Ridiculously, impossibly, unnecessarily slow. You might be the only person in here are you’ll still wait ten minutes for the guy behind the counter to pour you an iced tea. But even if this weren’t the only cafe on this side of the park (it is), there would be reason to recommend it. In typical Brooklyn style, they “curate” treats from respected local purveyors–like sandwiches from Brancaccio’s, Colson pastries, and homemade flaky and delicious Pop Tart-like thingies from Ovenly–to go along with their Stumptown Coffee. The decor is also a design feat, with lots of natural light pouring across the nordic-seeming wood tables topped with intriguing terrarium arrangements. In the summer, the lounging spills out into the quaint back garden. In winter, the original wood-burning fireplace gets cranking.
Elk is especially good for kids, with toys, games, special activities (posted on the website), and friendly families to meet.