We analyse a laser assisted sympathetic cooling scheme for atoms within the lowest Bloch band of an optical lattice. This scheme borrows ideas from sub-recoil laser cooling, implementing them in a new context in which the atoms in the lattice are coupled to a Bose-Einstein condensate (BEC) reservoir. In this scheme, excitation of atoms between Bloch bands replaces the internal structure of atoms in normal laser cooling, and spontaneous emission of photons is replaced by creation of excitations in the BEC reservoir. We analyse the cooling process for many bosons and fermions, and obtain possible temperatures corresponding to a small fraction of the Bloch band width within our model. This system can be seen as a novel realisation of a many-body open quantum system.