Briar Mart Café, Levantine and Mediterranean market, was originally operated by local Moe Sharifi, but around the time he opened the Caspian Café in 2005, he sold the spot to his brother, Shawn Sharifi, who runs it today. We stroll past the close shelves of groceries to the lunch counter — we’re just dropping in for a bite, keeping it simple with platters. Our gyros platter ($9.99) comes with a mound of respectably spiced meat under tzatziki that doesn’t do much beyond being creamy. It also serves as a dressing for this side salad, which is fine, but not for the salad paired with our falafel platter ($8.99), which gets feta and pit-in kalamata olives instead.
The four falafel balls come dry, coarse and crumbly, with plenty of lemony sumac. With the sumac dusting atop the hummus, it can be a little much. The pita triangles on both dishes serve their purpose, not warmed but at least not stale. It’s a cool spot, but far from the strongest Mediterranean menu in town.