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I think we can all agree that not only is brunch one of the best meals EVER, but that there are a ton of amazingly wonderful and totally fun NYC brunch spots sprinkled throughout the city, just waiting to be discovered.

Am I right?

I mean, not only do you get to sleep in but you can choose from an assortment of breakfast inspired options that include pancakes, french toast, waffles, eggs, and basically any other piece of carb awesomeness that you can think of (sorry Dr. Atkins, this post ain’t for you).

But the Real Question Is:

Where are the best New York City brunch spots at? I mean, no one wants to be all hangry and aimlessly wander through the New York City subway saying, “Please sir, I want some brunch!”

That’s Where I Come In:

Whether you’re taking mom out for a special Mother’s Day brunch, or heading out with 20,000 of your fave family members, for an amazing Easter Brunch in NYC, or just brunching it up with your favorite gal pals for the best boozy brunch in NYC, we can agree that not all branches are created equally.

Hard to Believe.

But yes my friends, even New York City has some heinously awful brunch spots that SUCK, with a capital S.

So What Do You Do? (Besides add some of these places to your  New York City Itinerary in 24 hours)

Never fear (straps on lame ass cape), Girl with the Passport is here to answer all your questions about fun brunch spots in NYC.

Because yes:

I’ve lived here for over twenty years so I should know at least something about the best brunch in NYC.

So Without Further Ado:

Let’s check out some of the best brunch places in New York City. So whether you’re looking for a cheap brunch NYC or a boozy brunch NYC or a romantic brunch NYC or a lively brunch NYC, there will be something on this list that will TOTALLY tickle your fancy.

Since I am incapable of making it rain money, there’s a high chance that this post may contain affiliate links. Please see my disclosure for more information. As an Amazon Associate, I earn a small commission from qualifying purchases.

1. Tavern on the Green (Central Park)

By: Allison Judkins of Seeking Neverland (Check her out on Facebook and Instagram)

Embrace your inner Carrie Bradshaw and have a super fancy brunch at tavern on the Green!
Embrace your inner Carrie Bradshaw and have a super fancy brunch at tavern on the Green!

Tavern on the Green, located right in the beautiful central park, offers is an amazing NYC brunch spot. First opened in 1934, then reopened in 2013, this restaurant has become a historic, New York City landmark and brunch icon.

Now:

From the moment you walk in, to your first sip of their freshly made mimosas, you will be in awe of the decor, the service, and the decadent menu. My personal favorites are the Eggs Benedict Florentine and the Tavern Burger, all washed down with perfectly made mimosas of course.

But it Gets Better:

The interior of the restaurant is lined with enormous windows, providing ample natural light and stunning views of central park. Garden seating is also available and offers the same weekend brunch menu.

Therefore:

If you are looking for a classy weekend brunch in New York City, Tavern on the Green is a must. Just be sure to make a reservation and adhere to the smart but casual dress code because it’s fancy schmancy!

2. Russ and Daughters (Multiple Locations throughout Manhattan)

By: Mona Molayem of Mona Corona (Check her out on Instagram)

Russ and Daughters is home to the iconic, NYC brunch, which is a traditional NYC bagel with cream cheese, and lox.
Russ and Daughters is home to the iconic, NYC brunch, which is a traditional NYC bagel with cream cheese, and lox

When considering some of the best brunch spots in New York City, a classic bagel and lox spread should not be overlooked. Russ & Daughters is a true staple in NYC and might even be the a possible contender for the best brunch Manhattan.

That’s Why:

This iconic restaurant should be high on your list of what to eat in NYC since they have mastered the subtle art of smoking fish.

Now:

While their original location (opened in 1914!)  is a traditional New York City deli to-go counter, offering smoked fish, caviar, and of course bagels, the Russ & Daughter’s Café on the Lower East Side (with another location in the Jewish Museum on the Upper West Side) is a sit down restaurant.

The Best Part is:

This location offers all the classics of the counter plus a variety of egg dishes and a selection of Jewish deli staples such as matzo ball soup and potato latkes.

But It Gets Better:

The café even has a bar for those in search of a boozy brunch and presents a selection of signature cocktails; champagne, wine, and beer; and my personal favorite, an assortment of infused of Bloody Marys.

Therefore:

My ideal brunch at Russ & Daughters consists of a classic board with nova smoked salmon, chive cream cheese, an everything bagel (with tomato, onion, and capers), and a side of wasabi infused row. Top it all of with a smoked pepper infused Bloody Mary and you have the perfect New York City brunch.

3. Le Barricou (East Williamsburg, Brooklyn)

By: Tahiya Reza of Lipstick and a Bucketlist (Check her out on Instagram)

When all else fails, try some fresh pancakes from Le Barricou.
When all else fails, try some fresh pancakes from Le Barricou.

Here’s the Deal:

If you’re visiting Brooklyn, you must try the quaint and cozy NYC brunch at the French bistro, Le Barricou, in the trendy East Williamsburg district. It might even be the best brunch in Brooklyn.

Annoyingly Enough:

You can expect a line during the weekend, (like most local favorites) but the enormous baked pancakes topped with berries, freshly squeezed fruit juices and delicious mimosas, all make this top NYC brunch spot well worth the wait.

Now:

If you’re a dessert aficionado like me, don’t forget to order the pastry basket filled with chocolate and almond croissants, with a blueberry danish thrown in there for good measure.

It Gets Better Though:

There are other authentic French staples on the menu like frittata auvergnate, croquet madame, and more. 

Plus:

The friendly staff and vintage décor really set this Brooklyn brunch spot apart from the competition. Expect to find a library with antique furniture that is illuminated by a working fireplace and a rustic bar that is perfectly set amongst a sea of candlelit tables.

That’s Why:

This is the perfect brunch spot for either a romantic date, catching up with your girlfriends, or solo diners who want to get some writing done.

But the best part?

This iconic brunch spot in New York City makes you feel as though you’re dining in a traditional French bistro when you haven’t even left New York. 

4. Jack’s Wife Freda (SOHO or Greenwich Village)

By: Christabel Lobo of Where’s Bel (Check her out on Instagram)

When visiting Jack's Wife Frida, try the Green Shakshouka which is green tomatillo sauce that is served over a Maya’s Breakfast Bowl (a serving of scrambled or poached eggs, red quinoa, kale, spaghetti squash, grilled tomato, and avocado).
When visiting Jack’s Wife Frida, try the Green Shakshouka which is green tomatillo sauce that is served over a Maya’s Breakfast Bowl (a serving of scrambled or poached eggs, red quinoa, kale, spaghetti squash, grilled tomato, and avocado).
There’s no shortage of brunch spots in NYC. But there’s one that I just can’t out of my mind.
 
 
And to Be Honest:
 
 
I actually don’t mind waiting in line for Jack’s Wife Freda. The restaurant is run by an immigrant husband and wife duo named Dean and Maya Jankelowitz.
 
 
Now:
 
 
Originally from South Africa and Israel respectively, the couple met while working in the restaurant industry in New York City and connected over a shared love of food and a desire to have their own brunch spot in NYC.
 
That’s Why:
 
The couple opened their first restaurant location at Lafayette St in 2012. The name pays homage to Dean’s grandmother, Freda, who was a wonderful cook and great host; amazing qualities that you will find in the staff at Jack’s Wife Freda.
 
Why Do I Love It?
 
Everything served here has a home-cooked feel, is filling, and is incredibly delicious. I highly recommend the Green Shakshouka which is a green tomatillo sauce that is served over a Maya’s Breakfast Bowl – a serving of scrambled or poached eggs, red quinoa, kale, spaghetti squash, grilled tomato, and avocado. Oh, and don’t forget to add a dash of their original green hot sauce for good measure!
 
Added Bonus:
 
With locations in SoHo and the West Village, brunching in New York City just got easier since this is a great place to start off your weekend on the right note.
 

5. Sugar Freak (Astoria, Queens)

By: Hanna Gao of Rated by Hanna (Check her Out on Instagram)

The only thing better than a Beignet is beignet Benedict and cheesy grits from Sugar Freak in Queens.
The only thing better than a Beignet is beignet Benedict and cheesy grits from Sugar Freak in Queens.

Here’s the Deal:

My friends and I passed Sugar Freak multiple times before deciding to finally walk in! Funnily enough, we woke up too late for this other NYC brunch place so we wandered into Sugar Freak instead.

Now:

It was 10:45 am and the restaurant was already super busy so we sat at the bar while waiting for a table. And while I thought it was a candy store, it turned out to be a Louisiana style, Creole restaurant that serves amazing Southern Comfort food!

The Only Problem?

This restaurant features so many delicious brunch items and fun drinks that’s it is hard to pick out just one thing to order. My favorites include the hush puppies, biscuits & gravy, shrimp creole with cheesy grits and beignet Benedict!

The Truth Is:

I had never tried a beignet before, so I was eager to dive into my dish. My beignet benedict was the perfect combination of savory and sweet, with praline bacon that was blended to perfection with a hollandaise sauce that sat atop on a poached egg that in turn rested upon a homemade beignet.

The Verdict:

We loved the beignet so much we ordered a plate of five for dessert!

6. 230 5th Avenue (Midtown)

By; Gabby Beckford of Packs Light (Check her out on Instagram)

This fantastic rooftop bar is also home to an amazing, brunch buffet!
This fantastic rooftop bar is also home to an amazing, brunch buffet!

My favorite New York City brunch midtown is definitely 230 Fifth Ave!

First of all:

The food is delicious and served buffet style so that you can serve yourself as much eggs Benedict, french toast, and pancakes as you want.

On the downside though:

Alcohol isn’t unlimited, but a good-sized pitcher of mimosas costs only $7, a total steal.

But That’s Not Even the Best Part:

Brunch is actually served on a rooftop that is dotted with these adorable little igloos, making it a great, rooftop brunch NYC option! You can head up there, relax in an igloo, and chat with friends or make new ones while taking in the city air.

Now:

If it’s cold don’t worry because the restaurant provides you with blankets and robes to help keep you cozy! Perfect for a chilly winter day in New York City.

7. The Smith (East Village)

By: Sierra Dehmler of Passport Voyager (Check her out on Instagram)

The Smith's Ranchero Scramble is always an NYC brunch favorite.
The Smith’s Ranchero Scramble is always an NYC brunch favorite.

The Smith is my absolute favorite brunch spot in New York City (and one of my favorite restaurants in NYC)! It has been my go-to brunch spot since I moved to the city over eight years ago.

Truth Be Told:

It has become my default choice for gatherings with friends, birthdays, holidays, etc. Basically, any excuse to eat at The Smith and I’ll take it!

The Best Part is That:

They have four different locations (NoMad, East Village, Midtown and Lincoln Square) so no matter where you are in the city, you can get your foodie brunch fix.

Here’s the Deal:

This restaurant serves American fare options that range from healthy to hearty to downright indulgent. Personally, my favorite location is the one in the East Village. It’s bright and airy with a beautiful design; a location that is always bustling with people.

The Best Part Though?

You can make reservations for brunch! Yes, brunch reservations NYC are hard to find! My current brunch obsession is their Ranchero Scramble which includes perfectly scrambled eggs, black beans, cheddar, avocado and chipotle salsa that is set atop some freshly made corn tortillas.

Truth be Told:

I would happily brunch at The Smith every single weekend!

8. PS Kitchen (Mid-Town)

By: Erika Stauffer of Latin Atlas (Check her out on Facebook)

One of the delicious burgers you'll enjoy at PS Kitchen.
One of the delicious burgers you’ll enjoy at PS Kitchen.
PS Kitchen is a delicious, plant-based, vegan brunch option in New York City.
 
I Know What You’re Thinking:
 
For those who aren’t vegan (my hand is raised) hold up a minute; the food is gourmet, and the restaurant is chic. I seriously dare you to glance at the brunch menu and not be inspired.
 
Why?
 
The menu remains fresh and delicious with seasonally and globally-influenced plates that are prepared in a classically French style.
 
But it Gets Better:
 
The dreamy aesthetic of light tones, exposed brick, and fresh flowers is sure to please any and all of your brunch companions. 
 
To Top It All Off:
 
The quality of the food is on par with any high-end restaurant in New York City, only without the insane amount of bureaucracy or exorbitant prices. So just consider this a mildly cheap brunch NYC.
 
However: 
 
What really sets PS Kitchen apart from the competition is its one-of-a-kind, social-business model, where a 100% of the profits are donated to sustainable, local and global, charitable organizations locally and overseas; an extraordinary, socially conscious restaurant that makes you feel good about dining out.
 

9. Citizens of Chelsea (Chelsea)

By: Rachel Shulman of From East to West with RMS (Check her out on Facebook)

 
As an NYC resident, I always look for the newest and trendiest brunch spots in the city. And while Manhattan has a ton of brunch options to choose from, the one that really stands is at  Citizens of Chelsea.
 
Why the Fuss?
 
Not only is this Australian cafe less than a year old, but it is conveniently located on the west side of Manhattan. It is one of those places where you Immediately feel at ease and ready for brunch.
 
The Downside? 
 
They don’t take reservations but we only had to wait 20 minutes for a table during a popular brunch time. Plus, the staff are super helpful and their Australian accents don’t hurt either.
 
Now:
 
Since Citizens of Chelsea is known for putting an Australian twist on trendy food items, their star course is naturally an avocado toast. I got the avocado toast while my friend got the Acai bowl and both did not disappoint. Not only did they taste amazing but the display was incredible too.
 
That’s Why:
 
I have already come back twice since visiting and don’t plan on stopping anytime soon.
 

10. Egg (Brooklyn)

By: Liliane Fawzy of My Toronto World (Check her out on Instagram)

 

Brunch in New York City at Egg.

 

What is Egg?

Egg is a Southern-style restaurant located in the Williamsburg section of Brooklyn in New York City.

Added Bonus:

This restaurant is really Instagram friendly with white walls, flowers, and chalkboard menus. They also serve all day breakfast, which is a huge selling point in my opinion.

Now:

We had a fairly standard breakfast plate but also got some biscuits and a pitcher of mimosas. Let me warn you ahead of time, they do not skimp on the alcohol at this place. That was a very generous mimosa (and an excellent wake up in the morning haha).

 

But the Best Part:

The biscuit! My mind was blown. It was a perfect combination of fluffy dough and savory flavor that it made me want to order ten more (but I have restraint so I did not!).

Plus:

The atmosphere in the restaurant is super chill and very inviting. We sat there for a couple of hours, enjoying our delicious meal (and drinks!) while people watching. This restaurant is also great for people eating alone, couples and even families

Don’t Forget:

The streets surrounding the restaurant have some really cool street art, so be sure to take a walk around the neighborhood after you’ve finished your delicious brunch.

11. NOMO Kitchen (Soho)

Not only does this hotel restaurant have a menu of delectable brunch items that forever and always make me swoon, but the decor here is absolutely stunning, making this brunch spot in Ne work City a total Instagrammer’s paradise.

Firstly:

The entrance to Nomo Kitchen is covered by a topiary of neatly trimmed leaves that create a beautiful, botanical tunnel that serves as the entrance to the building.

Yup:

People use this spot for impromptu photo shoots. I literally had to not so politely ask a woman to move because she has been there for a solid half an hour and I was getting hungrier but the minute.

But I digress.

There are also quaint wooden seats, tables, statues, and trees that create a fantastic patio, in front of the restaurant, where you can sit, relax, and take photos after your meal.

But once inside:

You will be absolutely astounded. Between the modern glass roof, that floods the restaurant with copious amounts of light, the exquisite crystal chandeliers, and the walls that are adorned with vibrantly colored, street art style hearts, you definitely won’t leave without taking a few (hundred) photos.

Seriously, could a restaurant get any prettier than this?

All this and we haven’t even discussed the FAB brunch menu or the helpful staff.

Well:

One word, okay actually three but Lemon Ricotta Pancakes. So good. Served with a dusting of powdered sugar, some fresh mixed berries, and a sprinkling of candied pistachios and you’ll have a hard time not asking for seconds.

The Avocado Toast with a poached egg is also really good too.

But’s let be real:

Pancakes are a bit more fun than avocado toast.

Does this sound a bit out of your price range though?

Well, you’re in luck. All the entrees served here, besides the steak and eggs, are under $20. So even if your budget is tight (kind of like your pants are after eating here), you can still enjoy some of the finer things in life and add this to any DIY NYC food tour.

Oh and dress up a smidge.

This place feels a little fancy smancy. But not intimidatingly so. Like no ball gown needed.

12. Hotel Chantelle

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One of my absolute favorite brunch spots in New York City!

This gem of a restaurant, not an actual hotel, offers a delicious, reasonably priced brunch menu that is served amidst a light and airy top floor, adorned with vintage light fixtures, beautiful greenery, and a lovely glass ceiling that inundates the room with an exquisite amount of light.

As if the decor didn’t make this place awesome enough:

They serve brunch amidst a lively,20’s style band, that is fully equipped with trumpeters, saxophonists, and  a lead vocalist, who croons into a vintage microphone while dressed in a snazzy bow tie, a cabby hat, and a cool pair of shades.

Sprinkle in some fantastic wall art to create the perfect Instagram spot.

Plus, this restaurant is also located right down the street from Black Tap and the first street outdoor street art gallery; making this my new go-to brunch spot,

Not sure what to order?

When it comes to brunch orders, I’m a bit predictable and tend to order Eggs Benedict nine times out of ten.

However:

Hotel Chantelle offers a variety of dishes from healthy options, like an acas bowl or avocado toast, to decadent delights like truffle egg fondue and fried burrata.

But no matter what you order, I promise that you won’t leave hungry. 

13. Utsav (Mid-Town West)

 Some of the amazing Indian food that you'll enjoy from Utsav's sumptuous, brunch buffet.
Some of the amazing Indian food that you’ll enjoy from Utsav’s sumptuous, brunch buffet.

I don’t know about you, but I’ve never met an Indian brunch buffet that I didn’t like.

And Utsav is no exception.

Conveniently located on 6th Avenue, right next door to Rockefeller Center, this exquisite, Indian eatery is the perfect place to stop either before, or after, an amazing Broadway show. 

Plus:

Brunching here actually kind of feels like a show since this restaurant looks like the best Bollywood movie set EVER.

I mean:

The decor here is a TOTAL feast for the eyes, with hints of deep purple and bright gold splashed all across the dining room.

But, it gets better!

This buffet is made even snazzier by some awesome, live, Indian music that sadly, can also a bit loud.

Therefore:

It might be slightly difficult for you and your fave gal pals to gossip about what you discovered while low key stalking your ex on Facebook.

To avoid such a HORRENDOUS scenario (LOL);

Try visiting around 2 pm when the music is winding down and when the brunch crowds are long gone.

However:

You know what’s even better than the vibrant music and fun decor?

Why the FOOD of course!

Prepare for a sumptuous feast filled with innovative dishes like raita (a traditional Indian side dish of yogurt, cucumbers, and spices), tandoori chicken, saffron rice, lentils, fresh naan, and more! 

Excuse me while I wipe the pool of drool from my keyboard (I know, TMI).

Do yourself a favor though and come with an empty stomach, while wearing elastic waist pants, since you’re gonna wanna basically eat everything in sight.

And yes:

Calories absolutely do not count on the weekend. Pinkie promise!

Now, I know what you’re thinking.

Yes, the price is a little steep at $22.95 per person on Saturdays and $24.95 on Sundays, but it’s worth it.

Just come hungry, eat your face off, get your money’s worth, and live the NYC dream.

14: Brasserie 8 ½ (Mid-town west)

Another popular New York City brunch spot that… wait for it… ACCEPTS RESERVATIONS! 

Woohoo!

So make those reservations kids and be sure to snazz your wardrobe up since Brasserie 8 ½ is kind of sort of a fancy place.

And it should be ultra glam since this Sunday brunch buffet is a whopping $36 per person (add in an extra $15 per person if you want bottomless mimosas to help you drink away the pain of the price tag). 

However:

Rest assured that this is not your average brunch buffet… this is brunching at its bougiest! 

Heck yeah!

Not only do this American style brunch have a carving station that is every carnivore’s dream (think roast beef, leg of lamb, and roasted turkey), but they also have a seafood station, an omelette/crepe bar, a sweet breakfast station (imagine waffles, pancakes, and muffins), and a hot buffet with pasta primavera and Eggs Benedict (And we all know how I feel about my Eggs Bennie!).

And for the dessert?

Yeah, they have a veritable utopia of sweet treats that includes things like éclairs, lemon tartlets, petit fours, linzer tortes and more.

Yup:

For only $36, you can basically die and ascend to dessert heaven a la Marie Antoinette (minus the icky, “off with her head” thing).

So:

If this little diatribe makes you want to turn your Brasserie 8 ½ fantasy into a reality, then pack your walking shoes because this posh little spot is just a hop, skip, and jump away from Central Park (While you’re there, snag a sweet parasol and a nifty, horse drawn carriage to really embrace your inner Marie Antoinette). 

But seriously though:

Brasserie 8 ½ really is a great place to sit, relax, and chat with friends. 

And if you’re trying to resist eating your feelings, unlike me, I promise that they also really do have some healthy food options as well (If you’re awesome and don’t have complete lack of self-control, like me).

15. Jacob’s Pickles (Upper West Side)

Home to Southern comfort food and a wide array of craft beers:

Jacob’s Pickles is an upper west side restaurant with an exquisite, rustic barn meets city chic feel that will definitely leave you speechless, but in the best possible way.

Known for their buttermilk fried chicken and homemade biscuits (AKA food crack):

You’ll definitely leave wanting more, even though their portions are enormous and you’ll probably leave feeling totally full.

But you know what they say? If a little is good then a lot is BATTER! Get it? I made a lame funny!

Right, awkwardly moving on.

Another house specialty is, DUH, their homemade pickles, hence the name of the entire restaurant.

Made in small batches, these little nuggets of awesome will forever change the way you look at jarred pickles.

Truly Southern comfort food at its finest.

But guess what? It gets better! I know, shocking but true.

Most of their menu items are actually under $20, with some dishes, like their to-die-for mac and cheese, offering specific portion options that make it easy to order based on how hungry you are.

Added bonus?

This epic NYC brunch spot also has over 20 different craft beers to choose from, as well as a delightfully diverse selection of cocktails, wines, and spirits that are perfect if you want to swan dive into one hell of a boozy brunch.

The not so good news?

Jacob’s Pickles only accepts reservations for parties of 6 or more. Plus, it’s usually packed to the brim for brunch.

Therefore:

This sometimes impacts the caliber of service here, so be sure to order an appetizer if you’re feeling like you might morph into a HANGRY BEAST at any moment.

Now:

Personally, I feel like waking up early kind of defeats the whole purpose of brunch.

Therefore:

If you’re like me and unwilling to sacrifice even a miliisecond of sleep, then only dine here when you can make a reservation with five of your closest friends, or strangers. Whatever works.

Otherwise:

You can always just walk around the corner and visit Maison Pickle, where you’ll have better luck, even if the menu is far more limited.

WARNING:

Weekend brunch reservations fill up quickly here (like fully booked for well over a month quick), so try and book a table as far in advance as possible.

16. The Butcher’s Daughter (Multipl locations throughout the city)

For my vegetarian and vegan brunchers out there, I got your back!

No diggity, no doubt!

See, The Butcher’s Daughter may sound like a meat eater’s paradise, but in actuality, this restaurant serves nothing but plants, plants, and more plants!

I know:

Slightly confusing but the deliciousness of their food never is since this NYC brunch spot is perfect for herbivores, omnivores, and dare I say, carnivores, of every variety!

First of all:

There are three different locations scattered throughout New York City (Nolita, West Village, and Williamsburg, Brooklyn), making brunch easily accessible no matter where you are.

Plus:

Each location has its own unique food and drink menu, with a distinct, totally Instagrammable interior that reflects founder, (aka the actual butcher’s daughter) Heather Tierney, background as a designer who developed each location as a fresh, feminine take on an old school butcher shop.

But what about the food?

Since, The Butcher’s Daughter is dedicated to ordering produce from local, organic farms, this vegetable slaughterhouse prides itself in supporting the local food community

As a result, the menu is constantly shifting to include more eat-with-the-season style dishes.

Therefore:

What you order really depends on the season, which means that you can continually visit and always find something new and exciting to enjoy.

And while the brunch menu here is pretty standard, with tons of avocado and eggbased dishes, the smashed avocado toast Benedict really stands out as one of their more unique creations.

However:

The triple berry French toast is pretty drool worth too.

Yet:

What really makes this eatery shine is their drink menu, which includes a broad range of teas, lattes, smoothies, and juices that are perfect for health-conscious individuals

Talk about slaying at healthy living.

But, not to worry if you’re looking for something stronger since they totally have mimosas!

Sadly though, they’re not bottomless.

However, this egregious faux pas is totally forgiven since they offer other, wicked awesome concoctions like a pineapple, orange, and passion fruit mimosa and a watermelon, lime and lavender mimosa that totally peeked my interest.

Prepare to get in line though since this eatery does NOT take reservations.

Fortunately enough, the wait doesn’t seem to exceed twenty minutes, but that really depends on the day and time of your visit.

However, compared to many other NYC brunch spots, a twenty minute wait time is easy peasey.

17. Clinton St. Baking Company (Lower East Side)

This once little bakery is now crushing the NYC brunch scene since chefs here excel at creating delicious, American brunch classics that give you that cozy, homecooked meal kind of feel (not that my mom ever made me pancakes, but that’s a story for another post).

And while the interior of this haven of brunchy goodness is simple, clean, and nothing to write home about:

That’s okay because Clinton St. Baking Company is 100% about the quality of their food.

So:

When you come here, expect a menu filled with fried chicken, waffles, and PANCAKES; delectable items of foodie goodness that will all leave you in the happiest of food comas.

I promise you’ll want to eat ALL the pancakes! They are that good!

Because truthfully, it there was one true international house of pancakes, Clinton St. Baking Company would be it.

I mean:

Their food is SO good that they’ve actually spread their pancake love all across the globe, by establishing locations in Tokyo, Dubai, Singapore, and Bangkok.

Legit:

They are so serious about pancakes that they’ve actually dubbed February pancake month.

That’s why:

Each day of the month features a different but delectable pancake dish that will make you die and go to pancake heaven.

Yup, brinner is served (Get it? Brunch + Dinner? Yup, makin’ up words and feelin’ awkward doing it)!

On the downside though:

The average wait time for weekend brunch can be upwards of two hours (Yikes). They also adhere to a strict “I don’t care who you are or who you know” no reservations policy.

So:

You can attempt to beat the long line by getting up mad early and arriving before they even open, at 9:00 am.

Yet:

As we all know,  8:30am on the weekend is not my jam. Thankfully though, some of their most popular breakfast/brunch items have made it to the dinner menu, including their pancakes.

Yup, best news ever for me.

However, If you do choose to tough it out and visit during the weekend, you’ll be delighted to learn that Clinton’s Street Baking Company actually has its own little bakery right next door to the main restaurant.

So:

If you’re willing to wait over an hour for brunch, and your stomach just ain’t havin’ it, then feel free to pop next door for a small pastry and coffee as you attempt to keep the beast within at bay.

Added bonus?

They have an electronic reservation system that actually notifies you, via text, when your table is ready.

Therefore:

Feel free to explore the neighborhood, work off that pre-brunch muffin, and come back ready, and able, to devour your well-deserved brunch.

18. Red Rooster (Harlem)

Now:

Let’s take it uptown to the heart of Harlem, where the brunch is forever bumpin’ at Red Rooster.

Known for a variety of decadent comfort food, this famous eatery is filled with warm, homey, and inviting decor that is kicked up a notch by a live, in-house, jazz/gospel band that serenades you throughout your Sunday brunch.

Trust me:

All your senses are in for a truly soulful (get it because they serve SOUL food?) experience.

And while Red Rooster does feature traditional, southern comfort food throughout its menu, everything here is always served with an unexpected twist, like their mama’s breakfast pie.

This rich and hearty dish is served with a uniquely wonderful side of Korean barbecue brisket that definitely skyrocket this dish into the stratosphere.

But, what if you’re looking to get your drank on?

Then Red Rooster does not disappoint with amazing cocktails like the Savoy, Mamita’s Michelada, or their signature, Rooster Spritzer, which is technically just an aperol spritz.

But hey, I’LL TAKE IT!

They also have your traditional, brunch classics like mimosas and the Bloody Rooster (AKA bloody mary). If you wanna go the traditional route.

But regardless of what you order, this place is definitely worth the trip uptown.

While you’re here, also check out the historic Apollo Theater and the National Jazz Museum of Harlem since both are practically right next door.

FYI:

Red Rooster doesn’t take reservations for Sunday brunch and operates on a first come, first serve basis.

That being said:

Even if you do arrive at 11:00 am, you shouldn’t have to wait any more than 20 minutes since the real rush starts closer to noon.

After that:

Enter at your own risk since wait times routinely exceed an hour.

19. The Edge (Harlem)

Owned by sisters Justine and Juliet:

The Edge is all about curious dining, a concept that was inspired by Harlem and the vivacious community that helped raise this dynamic duo.

Now:

Because Harlem is all about diversity, especially within its food culture, this popular neighborhood eatery offers three distinct menus, from New York, England, and Jamaica respectively, that guests can choose from.

On the New York menu:

You’ll find classic Harlem-style soul food featuring iconic dishes like shrimp and parmesan grits with scrambled eggs, and buttermilk pancakes with rum spiced whipped cream.

In contrast:

The English menu features a variety of  British cuisine staples like fish and chips and a savory, meat pie of the day.

And Jamaica:

Yeah, this menu showcases iconic, regional entrees like Jamaican jerk chicken with waffles and plantain crusted crab cakes.

Sigh. Too bad we’re not like cows and only have one stomach.

As far as the drinks are concerned…Mimosas for everyone since The Edge has, count em’, four different flavors to choose from like orange, mango, ginger, and spiced hibiscus.

Feel free to be amazed.

But if you can only pick one, definitely get the spiced hibiscus since It’s totally refreshing and something that you won’t really find anywhere else.

Now, because this place is SO popular:

Sunday brunch fills up fast, like within fifteen minutes of opening fast.

Therefore:

Either get your butt here real quick or make a reservation with 5 to 12 of your closest gals pals.

And, in spite of the slightly posh sounding name:

The Edge really does have an uber chill vibe with its rustic, industrial chic interiors that are ultra stylish but without being overly pretentious and hipstery.

The staff are also super friendly too, and will gladly make food recommendations if this amazing menu leaves you incapable of deciding what to order.

PS:

There are a ton of gluten-free options here for all of my gluten-less homies out there. Just be sure to tell your server in advance so that they can substitute any bread with something gluten-free.

20. Freeman’s (Lower East Side)

This quaint, Lower East Side brunch spot has a charming, turqois exterior that sits nestledd away, at the end of a quiet alley that is adorned with some of the most fabulous street art in all of NYC.

And honestly, it only gets better from here.

Continue through the front door and you’ll find a country cottage-chic dining room that looks like something straight out of a fairytale.

Everywhere you turn you’ll find white-washed brick walls, hardwood tables, simple country chairs, wall hung (electric) candles, and quaint, country paintings that all combine to create a beautifull rustic design aesthetic.

Yup:

The decor here truly is swoon-worthy and helps set the tone for an exquisitely indulgent, downright magical meal.

But:

The only thing better than the decor? You guessed it, the glorious food!

And its no surprise with mystical entrees like “Devils on Horseback” and “Hens of the Woods Mushroom Toast”.

However:

I suggest starting your brunch with fresh greek yogurt that is then topped with Freeman’s homemade strawberry granola, as well as raw honeycomb, bee pollen (Crazy right?) and seasonal fruit.

Without a doubt, this dish will totally leave you thinking, “Please sir, I want some more!”.

But, you MUST ignore this yearning since the best is yet to come.

Because truthfully, the real stand out here are hearty, decadently delicious entrees like banana buttermilk pancakes, topped with candied pistachios, vanilla glaze, and strawberries.

Seriously, could a pancake get any better? I think not!

But wait, what if you’re looking for something savory?

No worries because Freeman’s has got you covered. Either try something simple like their skillet eggs, with tomato, bell peppers, spinach, and pepper sauce or dare to be different and go for their bison steak and eggs.

Sure:

This dish costs a whopping $34 but seriously, have you seen bison on a brunch menu before? Yeah, I didn’t think so.

But, all in all:

I thoroughly enjoyed my brunch experience at Freeman’s and highly recommend this restaurant if you’re looking for a place that feels far, far away, but that actually isn’t.

Friends that Brunch Together Stay Together

Umm, so I don’t know about you but I am now infinitely more motivated to get my butt out of bed and check out brunch New York City style.

I Don’t Know About You But:

I am so down with any excuse to eat carbs, glorious cards, until my stomach explodes or until they have to wheel me out of the restaurant, whichever comes first.

On a Mildly More Serious Note:

These ladies are amazing and totally found some of the most epic spots for brunch in New York City. I mean after I read this I literally had to order from Seamless because I was so damn hungry.

But Really:

No matter who you are or what you like, there is a brunch on here for you and your gal pals too. So even if you have that weird friend who is carb free, gluten free, sugar-free, and dairy free, even, you’ll find something here for her to nibble on that isn’t just a head of lettuce (it’ll be kale since that is so much more in vogue now).

Now:

Go forth, do New York City Sunday brunch, and nurse your food coma to the best of your ability. At the very least, brunch will help ease the inevitable sting of the ever-looming Monday Blues, at least a little bit.

When doing some New York City travel, one of the best New York City things to do is to go out to Brunch. and enjoy the best New York City food. So here are ten amazing New York City brunch spots. to add to your New York City bucket list.
When doing some New York City travel, one of the best New York City things to do is to go out to Brunch. and enjoy the best New York City food. So here are ten amazing New York City brunch spots. to add to your New York City bucket list.
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