Fall is finally here, and what we lack in firesides and falling leaves across Los Angeles, we more than make up for in crisp alfresco dining. Welcome autumn mornings with new brunches that showcase maple, whiskey and apple butter—or if you’re a little bah humbug about pumpkin spice and other fall flavors, simply check out the latest in patio brunching. Or modern-Filipino brunching. Or beachy brunching. However you welcome October, we’ve got something to fit the bill.
Santa Monica’s breezy new café is bright and subtly beachy, making it an upbeat spot to start your morning. The food’s what really seals the deal, though, with a brunch menu that runs nearly all day long and offers micheladas, house-baked pastries and California fare galore. There’s the requisite grain bowl and plate of eggs and bacon, but you can also expect a Vegemite-slicked avocado toast, a pork adobo bowl, chilaquiles, buckwheat cakes, a chorizo-and-kale breakfast burrito, and French toast topped with cashew butter and berry jam. End on a sweet note with those aforementioned pastries, a McConnell’s ice cream and La Colombe espresso affogato, or the Ballpark Sundae, which piles classic stadium snacks on top of ice cream.
Sat, Sun 8am–5pm
What could very well be Eagle Rock’s best neighborhood restaurant finally launched what could very well be a neighborhood spot’s must lucrative meal service: weekend brunch. It’s a little surprising it took so long to arrive, but who are we to complain—we’re just glad it’s here, and that we can enjoy it with a glass of rosé on Little Beast’s repurposed-Craftsman patio. One day of the week only, find items such as crispy deviled eggs with shallots and a sweet-and-sour tamarind sauce, bread pudding French toast with fig-and-blueberry compote, charred-steak tostada with Thai vinaigrette, and a breakfast burrito with chicken sausage and chipotle crema.
Charles Olalia’s buzzy and buzzing Silver Lake spot now serves a modern-Filipino brunch menu absolutely plastered with items we want to eat upon waking. On the sweeter side, find coconut-and-rice pancakes with pinipig and salted coconut cream, as well as fresh cinnamon morning buns. Those looking for something a bit more savory might opt for the arroz caldo with calamansi schmaltz, or the toasted rice cakes with salted egg and cheese, in addition to the menu’s regular offerings of chicken adobo or the longganisa sandwich. Can’t decide? A cool $15.50 nets you the Ma’am Sir breakfast combo, complete with garlic fried rice or green salad and your choice of longganisa, tocino or fried anchovies, plus seasonal atchara, two eggs any style and house-baked pan de sal. Wash it all down with mimosas or calamansi brunch cocktails and you’ve got it made.
Sat, Sun 10:30am–2:30pm
Descanso Gardens’ scenic restaurant embraced brunch from weekend one, but now that autumn’s here, executive chef Philip Mack’s whipped up a menu playing up fall flavors such as apple butter and squash. Sure, you can still find a breakfast burrito, vegan hash, eggs Benedict and other brunch stalwarts, but if you’re one of those people who breaks out a scarf on an 80-degree October day out of principle, you’re going to want one of the new, autumnal items: maple-roasted squash tartine with butternut squash, kabocha squash mash, pomegranate, feta crumble and pistachio dukkah; the shrimp and grits, featuring apple butter BBQ shrimp, Tillamook cheddar grits cake, hickory-smoked bacon crumble, poached egg and a spicy tomato broth; and the fall vegetable breakfast scramble of maitake mushrooms, kale, butternut squash, herbed potato, blistered tomato and roasted poblano sauce. The restaurant’s signature maple pancakes with banana, brown-sugar-spiced walnuts and a drizzle of whiskey maple syrup should also fit the bill.
Sat, Sun 9am–2pm
This sleek Beverly Hills spot is welcoming the season with a one-month-only brunch tailored to autumn: Ocean Prime’s Sunday-morning menu is available only on their patio, so guests can soak up L.A.’s “fall weather” (or whatever it is we get of it). That doesn’t mean it’s all pumpkin-spice pancakes and chai brunch cocktails, though. The menu itself is classic- and California-leaning, with options such as lemon curd French toast, smoked salmon on an everything bagel, and lobster avocado toast. There’s even a raw bar and a selection of sushi, because what is fall in L.A., anyway? If you must have something orange, find it in bottomless blood orange mimosas.
Sundays through October/early November, 11am–4pm