Today, Eater turns its attention to the weekend and a meal that, despite having its share of detractors, can actually be a life-saving, spectacular experience when done right. Ladies and gentlemen, please welcome to the Eater Brunch Heatmap, a look at the 25 restaurants across America that are simply killing it during those nebulous weekend hours between breakfast and dinner. Listed in alphabetical order, all of these buzzy picks have been serving brunch for a year or less and are garnering major raves in their respective cities.
These restaurants go beyond the predictable eggs Benedict-filled menus that draw the ire of brunch critics. In Portland, Ore., there's a Spanish-inspired brunch menu from Jose Chesa in which eggs are served with blood sausage and Catalan beans (Ataula), while Philadelphia chef Eli Kulp makes his egg sandwiches with pastrami (High Street on Market). Not to mention the hotspot in San Francisco's Mission district that offers slow-cooked eggs with pork belly and dashi (Namu Gaji) or the Seattle newcomer with corned rabbit hash on the menu (Roux). Some restaurants are also upgrading brunch cocktails from the standard mimosa/Bloody Mary choice: a Dallas restaurant serves a Michelada made with "cobra blood" (Chino Chinatown), while San Franciscans switch it up with a smoked strawberry mescal mimosa (Hi Lo BBQ).
Most of these brunches can be found at restaurants that are equally new — including Tim Maslow's Ribelle in Brookline, Paul Kahan's Nico Osteria in Chicago, and Andrew Carmellini's Lafayette in New York — but that's not always the case. New York City stalwart Momofuku Ssam Bar and Atlanta's Cakes & Ale have both recently launched brunch menus that are already insanely popular. Straight ahead, all the eggs, bacon, and booze that make Sunday morning a little bit easier.
Tried any of the places on the list or feel there are any glaring omissions? You know what to do.