Smiley’s is a small bakery-cafe in downtown Colorado Springs, across from Poor Richard’s. We went for a weekend brunch.

The counter is opposite the door. The floor is stuffed with small assorted tables, just stuffed with them, and there’s no way to get from the door to the counter without running into tables or diners. The walls are crammed with bric-a-brac and mirrors; the mirrors are set to reflect the faces of diners as they eat, which was a little creepy.

The food was good. I had a quiche with really good crust and a delicious side salad, and chocolate-dipped strawberries for dessert. My husband Lee, the carnivore, didn’t fare as well; the breakfast sandwich was good but not enormous, and he was still peckish afterwards.

The service was a little slow, but not annoyingly so. The staff was friendly, but they were all trying a little too hard, a little too stressed out and a little impersonal.

I feel like the place was trying to force itself to have more character than it really needed to. Keep it simple, baby.