Rise and shine and welcome to a brand new year. Whether you’re eating healthy after the holidays or looking to go big and carpe those hearty brunch menus, L.A.’s got a handful of new ways to wake up deliciously in January. From poolside Italian eggs to some of the best baked goods in town, here’s where to brunch this month.
Uni scrambled eggs, anyone? This all-day café recently cropped up inside the new Second Home co-working space, but Andrew’s Place is open to all—meaning there’s no membership required to enjoy some coconut yogurt with almond granola on that verdant patio. There are house-cured salmon tartines; bowls of steel-cut oatmeal made with almond-milk horchata; truffled eggs with prosciutto; rustic slabs of toast slathered with strawberry-thyme jam; and even some sweet-savory buckwheat waffles. What’s more, many of the herbs and other greenery come straight from the restaurant’s on-site garden. Technically this spot isn’t open for weekend brunch—just weekdays for now—but the menu looks so good we had to include it.
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La Brea’s got a bustling new sports bar, which just so happens to serve stick-to-your ribs brunch on weekends—perfect for those who want a bite while catching the game. Berkshire House boasts shareable, snackable fare such as garlic knots, whole New York-style pizzas and buffalo cauliflower, but on Saturday and Sunday you can find more morning-friendly plates such as cinnamon knots dripping with icing; breakfast burritos stuffed with hash browns; chicken and Belgian waffles; and a breakfast stromboli full of scrambled eggs, spinach and red onions with a side of tater tots. Game on.
Sat noon–3pm, Sun 10am–3pm
Zack Hall’s homespun bakery now, finally, has a full-on café. You can still find Clark Street’s phenomenal croissants, cookies and loaves of bread, but also bagels, soft-boiled eggs, Nordic-inspired breakfast plates and plenty of lox, a nod to Hall’s background of baking in Sweden. There’s a full coffee program to help get you moving and serve as a complement to goods like lemon-and-ginger scones and large pinwheels of pain aux raisin, plus light fare such as Greek yogurt topped with house-made granola and seasonal fruit, and avocado toasts, ricotta toasts and all sorts of toasts, now enjoyable in a roomy space all their own.
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For those who like to brunch in style, you can find this breezy California-Italian restaurant tucked into the Silver Lake Pool & Inn, a darling boutique hotel that’s small in size but big on design. Marco Polo sports an indoor-outdoor floor plan, which makes some alfresco eggs not only possible but ideal on a weekend morning (hello, waking up slowly under those palm trees and umbrellas). Expect Italian-leaning eggs, such as their prosciutto take on a Benedict, plus items like ricotta pancakes, fennel-touched avocado toast and fresh pastries. If you’re more into lunch items, there’s also a handful of pastas on offer, plus salads and some antipasti. Want to make your frittatas and cocktails even more luxe? Ask to dine poolside.
Sat, Sun 10am–5pm; weekday breakfast 7–10am
Two of L.A.’s culinary OGs just opened a brand new restaurant in Santa Monica, making a return to the neighborhood after launching (and recently shuttering) their beloved and influential Border Grill there so many years ago. Now, you can find Susan Feniger and Mary Sue Milliken inside the Gateway Hotel and turning out even more colorful Mexican fare at their latest, Socalo. The all-day canteen starts breakfast as early as 7am, even on weekends, with a morning menu that includes the likes of market-vegetable chilaquiles in either red or green sauce; huevos rancheros under a roasted-poblano salsa; house-made granola available as either sweet or savory; breakfast tacos; and fresh pastries like guava empanadas. Wash it all down with their daily agua fresca or something from their juice bar (we’ve got our eyes on the carrot juice and ginger lemonades, personally).
Looking for more new menus?
Fine-dining concepts rarely launch brunch service, but if we could’ve pick one to start, chef Eric Bost’s Auburn would’ve been right at the top of the list. Fortunately Bost launched brunch without us having to beg, which is very kind, and he did us one better: He’s even offering the brunch menu on Fridays. Three days a week, the tasting-menu spot goes fully à la carte—though you can always get the dinner menu à la carte at the bar in the evening—and switches from the restaurant’s procession of artful, imaginative small plates to equally beautiful dishes, but just done a bit more casually: There are baked pancakes with smoked late-season figs, earl grey and toasted hay cream; there are bowls of yogurt with charred persimmon, chewy carrot, granola and buddha’s hand fruit; there are burnt-cinnamon croissants; and there are poached egg yolks atop the bowls of charred broccoli and brioche with an aged beef-fat vinaigrette. What’s more, if you go at brunch, you can sample Bost’s fantastic cooking for a fraction of the dinner price. No reason not to jet to Melrose this weekend.
One of our favorite new taquerias can be found in the kitchen of one of L.A.’s best wine bars—a win-win for weekending. The husband-and-wife team of Metztli Taqueria usually pop up at Melody in Virgil Village from Sunday to Tuesday, but on Saturday and Sunday mornings, they serve their totally creative tacos with a brunch twist. Local produce such as squash, sweet potato and tomato—and long-braised tender meats—often wind up under the likes of black-garlic salsas in fresh blue-corn tortillas, but on weekends, head to Melody for chilaquiles, churro waffles, Mexican egg-topped hot chicken sandwiches, and other killer ways to wake up. (Of course, if you really want to do it right, take a gander at Melody’s wine list and sip some natural wine with those tacos on that luxurious, spacious patio.)
Sat, Sun 11am–3pm
Looking for an Italian brunch on the Westside? Santa Monica’s Stella Barra just expanded its menu and concept, rebranding to Stella Barra Pizzeria & Wine Bar. Now the pizza spot offers a focus on antipasti, its first-ever pasta program, and few other wine-pairing–perfect bites—plus a fuller wine list—in addition to its already robust pizza menu. On weekends, catch the new antipasti, pasta, the full pizza menu and a mix of old and new brunch staples: a weekly breakfast pizza; oversize cinnamon rolls; breakfast sandwiches with the likes of spicy Italian sausage and provolone; and caramelized brioche French toast, among others.
Sat, Sun 11am–3pm
When one of L.A.’s primo pasta joints launches a new brunch menu, you pay attention—because yes, at Union, there is now brunch pasta on weekends. The charming Pasadena spot now offers morning fare, and on Sundays this includes baked cannelloni with black kale, young pecorino, egg and brioche breadcrumb; and lasagna with guanciale, DiNapoli tomatoes, red bell peppers and egg; plus more traditional brunch goods like smoked ham with fried egg, beans and a charred-herb vinaigrette; Jersey-style sticky buns with spiced rum and pecans; and decadent apple pie French toast with apple butter and cinnamon gelato. Even the avocado toast gets the Italian treatment, as it comes topped with giardiniera, and we are not complaining.
One of our favorite coffee spots recently opened an L.A. flagship in the Arts District, and now it’s quickly become one of our favorite spots to grab a morning bite. Outposts for the Santa Cruz-based Verve Coffee Roasters can already be found around Los Angeles, but in its gleaming new 7,000-square-foot café and roastery, you can snag an extended menu of both coffee concoctions and full meals. Every day offers an all-day menu and a few house-baked pastries studded with fresh fruit, nuts, chocolate and other enticing bits and bobs, and on the weekend, there’s even more on offer. Look for a savory take on French toast with organic eggs, kale, parmesan and house-made maple bacon; steak and eggs with Calabrian-chili chimichurri, halloumi and salad; smoked-trout Benedicts with everything-seasoning hash browns, kale, horseradish hollandaise and trout roe, and more. Absolutely snag one of those pastries, too.
Sat, Sun 8am–4pm