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We’re breezing into alfresco season, which means it’s the perfect time to drink some mimosas in a botanical garden or opt for poached eggs on a plant-packed patio. Whether you’re looking for bottomless brunch cocktails and scallion pancakes from a Top Chef winner or the city’s best pastries, here’s where to kick off your weekends in March.
For brunch with some scenery, the Edition Hotel’s lush plant-covered Ardor restaurant just launched brunch service so you can wake up to skillet pancakes on one of West Hollywood’s best patios. Chef John Fraser’s keeping the natural focus going on weekend mornings with a menu that’s big on produce: There’s a small seafood raw bar selection, plus options like steak with shiso chimichurri; lobster scrambles; and a breakfast sandwich sporting chicken sausage and Calabrian chili. But the focus here is on vegetables—many sourced from nearby farmers’ markets—which find their way into the likes of breakfast tacos with sweet potato and avocado; a forest-mushroom omelet; crepes with cream and berries; seasonal four-grain porridge; and a Greek mezze platter with turmeric eggs and butternut squash baba ganoush. If that somehow doesn’t do it for you, there are fresh pastries (hello, house croissants and English muffins) and mimosas, not to mention a number of rosés. (Hey, it’s almost prime patio season, remember?)
Sat, Sun 11am–3pm
One of 2019’s best new restaurants is getting into the brunch game with one of the best ways you can start a morning in L.A.: Lincoln Carson’s pastries. The Bon Temps chef and pastry star sadly cut weekday breakfast at his modern Arts District brasserie, which meant that some of the city’s best croissants, cakes and scones disappeared from the scene. Thankfully they’ve returned at the new brunch service, where you can purchase a flight of them via the pastry board, which features a new addition of whipped ricotta and honey. But as brilliant as these baked goods are, they still don’t manage to outshine entrées such as Carson’s crab cake Benedict with tomato jam; the flawless “eggs on eggs” French omelette topped with caviar; and a custardy butternut squash quiche. Even the sides are worth daydreaming about, whether it’s the artful slab of lacquered thick-cut bacon or a bowl of crispy potatoes, which arrive as borderline patatas bravas. Our point? One of the best restaurants in town is now serving one of our favorite new brunches, so grab a few friends and order the menu.
Sat, Sun 10:30am–2pm
Now that the weather’s warming up, why not brunch alfresco? The Kitchen at Descanso Gardens recently underwent a massive revamp, which means the sprawling and iconic botanical gardens have a new all-day café to check out—and on weekends, a new brunch. The Kitchen’s new, more global menu takes its cues from the nature that surrounds it, which means cauliflower al pastor tacos; a tarragon-aioli–topped burger; and produce-packed cocktails—and at brunch, a bar menu of fresh-vegetable bloody Marys, plus floral options such as the Blossom Mimosa, made with chamomile syrup and edible flowers. To eat, look for weekend-only additions such as a daily quiche; beignets with Chantilly cream; and chilaquiles with free-range eggs. Note: You don’t even need to buy admission to the gardens in order to dine here (but if you ask us, tickets max out at $15 and are well worth it).
Sat, Sun 9am–2pm
It’s finally here. Jessica Koslow and Gabriela Cámara’s highly anticipated collab was announced as an all-day restaurant, and now it is. The L.A.-meets-Mexico City concept opened inside Santa Monica’s Proper hotel last October, but a few weeks ago, we finally got a taste of the kind of morning fare the minds behind Sqirl and Contramar might whip up together. What does that look like? As it turns out, a few Sqirl-y rice bowls and salads, topped with local produce and herbage, but also new additions like chorizo and fried eggs; a tlacoyo of house-made masa topped with beans, eggs, crema and avocado; chilaquiles under confit tomato sauce; masa ricotta pancakes with Sqirl’s blood orange and hibiscus marmalade; and blue-crab toast with sorrel, trout roe, fig leaf oil and preserved Meyer lemon. Supplement with a few of the fresh pastries—we’re talking goat-milk cajeta linzers, coconut cream conchas and more—and coffees like the caramely cajetaccino, and you’re kicking off the day in style.
Top Chef winner Hung Huynh gave West Hollywood a sleek Pan-Asian restaurant last fall, plating wagyu-beef potstickers; lobster rangoon; gingery Cantonese shrimp; drunken noodles with short rib; and a cheeky Fukyou chicken with basil late into the night (speaking of late into the night, let’s not forget his downstairs bar, the Choo Choo Club). But this Sunday he’s launching brunch service, curing any Saturday-night hangovers he might’ve caused. You’ll be able to kick things off with a hair-of-the-dog prosecco kit ($45), which includes a bottle of bubbly and juice fixins like strawberry, peach, and orange juice, or opt for $20 bottomless mix-and-match cocktails. To eat, find those evening lobster rangoon and beef potstickers, plus brunch fare like a scallion pancake wrap with eggs and bacon; banana bread French toast with pineapple rum raisin sauce; the Fukyou chicken in sandwich form; steak and eggs; the Warrior stack-of-the-day pancakes; and Benedicts galore. And if Huynh caused you any hangovers due to too much Friday partying, don’t worry—he’s planning on launching Saturday brunch service down the line, too.
Sun with seatings at 11am, 1pm and 3pm