The 16 best brunch restaurants in L.A.
No one was totally sure what to expect when Cronut creator Dominique Ansel announceed he’d open his first full-service restaurant, but no one saw dim-sum-style brunch coming. On both Saturdays and Sundays, servers walk by tables while doling out everything from Ansel’s signature pastries to newer fare like lamb sausage, assemble-it-youself lobster rolls, and the creamiest, softest egg scramble with shallots. Each items you pick gets you a stamp on your card, which then gets totaled up at the end of your meal. (Don’t skip the DKA pastries, nor the slow-cooked, fall-apart maple ham.)
Fighting the brunch crowds at Blu Jam Café—which has locations in DTLA, Brentwood, Sherman Oaks, Hollywood, Tarzana and Woodland Hills—requires a special kind of patience. But with eggs Benedict that makes your shoulders slump with happiness and crunchy French toast that’s hard to beat, it’s well worth the wait. Fantastic service adds a neighborhood feel to the chain, which opened its Melrose location in 2006.
Catch has made its way from New York City to a rooftop in West Hollywood, bringing fresh seafood and stunning views to well-dressed Angelenos. For brunch, the celebrity hot spot has a raw bar and a brunch menu that includes a gluten-free waffle tower, plus eggs Benedict, omelettes, a farro health bowl, lobster rolls and more. The brunch menu also highlights its iced almond coffee, cold brew and green juice, for those who want to imbibe on the gorgeous rooftop patio.
The name says it pretty simply: Eat. Just eat. And with lines stretching down the street during weekend brunch hours, you probably could’ve guessed there’s a considerable amount of fantastic dishes to eat here. Aside from the scrambles, breakfast sandwiches, pastas and more, EAT’s French toast game is on point. Get the Killing Me Softly French toast: three layers of brioche stuffed with raspberries and nutella, and drizzled with house-made vanilla-and-raspberry sauce. Hot damn.
You might miss Gjusta if you don’t know what you’re looking for. The Venice bakery operates out of a nondescript warehouse; step inside and you’ll find a long, narrow corridor with glass cases of sweet and savory treats on the left, a working bakery behind it. On the sweet side, slices of fruit are folded into sugar-glazed dough for a morning indulgence; a banana chocolate tart, while pricey, is worth a brunch splurge. Gjusta serves as a sort of deli, too, where you can pick up cuts of meat and fish to go. Coffee, tea and a few other drinks are offered, but we recommend a refreshing saprkling limeade with mint, to be enjoyed on one of the benches or crates in the courtyard outside—sunshine and laid-back vibes guaranteed.
The weekend scene at Huckleberry can be intense, so it’s worth stopping by during the week to give yourself ample time to peruse the daily specials in the pastry case and decide whether you want to pair your tartine with a fruit-studded porridge bowl or something a little more savory, like pesto-y green eggs and ham. If you are in the mood for umami, it’s hard to go wrong with a breakfast sandwich that features the trinity of gruyere, aioli and Niman Ranch bacon, for the record.
The Aussies certainly love their “brekkie,” and thanks to the onslaught of Aussie cafes, so does L.A. The meal, which should be versatile enough to grab at any point of the day—so, brunch, essentially—is especially big at Little Ruby, the cute-cozy SaMo spot that’s only a block or two from the beach. Drop by before 4pm for stellar sweet corn fritters, a full Ausie breakfast (baked beans and roasted tomatoes included), coffee granola, ricotta hotcakes, salads and burgers, plus a full espresso bar and a line of fresh-pressed juice concoctions to enjoy in the sunshine. G’day, indeed.
Just steps from the beach, brunching at Manhattan Beach Post (more affectionately known as MB Post) has become a South Bay right of passage. On weekend mornings, diners delve into ricotta-stuffed French toast and truffle-honey-laced fried chicken; during the week, couples gaze at each other over family-style servings of squid ink tagliatelle and duck prosciutto. MB Post’s biscuits are practically legend at this point: bacon cheddar buttermilk beauties, served with a side of maple butter. An extensive wine list, along with beer and handcrafted cocktails, ensures that this spot in the bubble is all you really need.
Brunch, steak, truffle mac and cheese—Nick’s on 2nd is the neighborhood spot that seems to know exactly what you’re craving, no matter what time of day it is. Stop by this Long Beach staple for fried chicken and waffles or a California omelette before heading out to the shore. On a sunny day, the front patio is perfect for watching people stroll by on 2nd Street.
This Culver City diner is the go-to spot for boozy brunching at its finest. The $8.99 bottomless champagne special (supplement that with $7 carafes of orange juice to make your own mimosas) keeps the casual eatery packed with low-key locals, though the noise level definitely ratchets up as the glasses are emptied, making it feel like a neighborhood bar on game day. An array of Benedicts and especially the Huevos Divorciados—a spin on huevos rancheros, with two different sauces—are all worth a try, along with thos so-fluffy pancakes with fruit, nuts or chocolate.
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