Brunch alternatives

Hit up these less-frequented but equally tasty venues.



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  • Photograph: Noah Devereaux

    Brooklyn Label

  • Photograph: Noah Devereaux

    The Habitat

  • Photograph: Noah Devereaux

    Bar Breton

  • Photograph: Noah Devereaux

    Saravana Bhavan

Photograph: Noah Devereaux

Brooklyn Label

Long line at: M. Wells 21-17 49th Ave at 21st St, Long Island City, Queens (718-425-6917,
Typical wait: 30 to 90 minutes

Go here instead:
Brooklyn Label You may have to hold out for 20 minutes to dine at this superlative locale, but it's worth the delay. Among the all-day brunch options is a stellar wild-mushroom-ragout hash—roasted potatoes and hash browns combined with shiitake, oyster and cremini mushrooms and crowned with two poached eggs. 180 Franklin St at Java St, Greenpoint, Brooklyn (718-389-2806,

The Habitat Plenty of locals frequent this easygoing saloon for evening drinks, but surprisingly few wind up here early in the day. The $17 special comes with a choice of mimosa, Bloody Mary or sangria, as well as coffee or tea. We're suckers for the North Carolina cheese grits and blackened Cajun shrimp. 988 Manhattan Ave between Huron and India Sts, Greenpoint, Brooklyn (718-383-5615,

Long line at: Penelope 159 Lexington Ave at 30th St (212-481-3800,
Typical wait: One to two hours

Go here instead:
Bar Breton Chef Cyril Renaud draws on the cuisine of his native Brittany to create buckwheat galettes. The Broadway ($16) combines tangy goat cheese with mache, artichokes, potatoes and a red-pepper--sun-dried-tomato vinaigrette. You'll never be rushed here, so indulge in a renowned Breton specialty: hard cider. Try a half-bottle of the Etienne Dupont ($14). 254 Fifth Ave between 28th and 29th Sts (212-213-4999,

Saravana Bhavan Branch out from your usual eggs-and-pancakes hangover helper at this South Indian joint. To taste regional specialties, order a platter with two idli (steamed rice-and-lentil patties), a medu vada (crispy lentil doughnut), fresh chutneys, and coffee, tea or soda ($7.95). 81 Lexington Ave at 26th St (212-684-7755,

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Users say


I've always found Alias a great alternative to Clinton Street Baking Company. It's popular with the locals but I've never had to wait more than 15 minutes.