Brunch in New York is a delicate matter. It only comes around once, maybe twice, a week so choosing the right restaurant is of the utmost importance. There are few worse Sunday morning-specific feelings than waiting an hour for a subpar brunch. Are you feeling the classic bacon, eggs, and pancakes? Or are you in more of a dim sum mood? The options can seem endless and overwhelming, but don’t worry! We’ve narrowed it down to our top five tried-and-true spots worth the potential wait.
Sunday in Brooklyn: 348 Wythe Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11249.
Sunday in Brooklyn is a new favorite, already famous for their pancakes (more cake than pan) topped with a melted maple hazelnut praline syrup and a pat of butter. Sunday in Brooklyn is all over Instagram for very good reason, aside from the sunny three floors and gorgeous decor. The pancakes are a must, but don’t skip the Avocado Toast with whipped ricotta, sprouts, and toasted seeds either. Gluten-free bread is also available, with a texture so light and fluffy it would fool even the most devoted gluten lover. They also offer a selection of natural wines and seasonal cocktails. If you’re on the go, stop by their take-away window for a matcha and a pastry.
Diner: 85 Broadway, Brooklyn, NY 11249.
Diner is a local Williamsburg staple housed in a 1920s Pullman train car under the Williamsburg Bridge. Their local seasonal menu changes so often they don’t bother printing menus, instead waiters scrawl out the daily options on your paper table setting. Despite the ever-changing menu, they always have the staples; bacon, eggs, and the best biscuits around. I’d recommend ordering one of the daily specials like Buckwheat Pancakes with crème fraiche and rhubarb, a side of biscuits, or a freshly made scone. You really can’t go wrong.
Ruby’s Cafe: 219 Mulberry St A, New York, NY 10012.
Ruby’s is a great option — especially if you’re spending the day in SoHo — with Australian-influenced plates for both the health-conscious and hungover in your group. They offer everything from avocado toast with all the fixings to ricotta hotcakes with honeycomb butter, even the Australian classic Vegemite on toast if that’s your style. Try their Green Eggs Bowl or the Bluey’s Chicken Sandwich with a side of sweet potato fries.
Birds of a Feather: 191 Grand St, Brooklyn, NY 11211.
Birds of a Feather, run by the Michelin Star duo behind Café China, is by no means your typical brunch experience. They don’t even technically serve brunch, but instead a full-service lunch that’s perfect if you’re in the mood for modern Sichuan dim sum. The minimal, but warm interior offers a respite from the standard hectic brunch scene. Go with a group and plan on sharing to get a little of everything. We highly recommend the Steamed Soup Buns, Pork Dumplings in Chili Oil, Dan Dan Noodles, Three Pepper Chicken, and the Duck Fried Rice, but truthfully everything is thoughtful and delicious.
Dimes: 49 Canal St, New York, NY 10002.
Dimes is the perfect brunch spot if you want your Bloody Mary made with organic tomato juice, or a shot of wheatgrass in your mimosa (yes, we’re serious). One of the most popular new restaurants, Dimes is upping our expectations of healthy food, with a sense of stylish humor and décor to match. We can’t get enough of the Breakfast Sandwich, Carob Acai Bowl, and Power Bowl.