Compiling a list of the best brunch places in NYC is like picking a favorite child or deciding which character you hate least (at any given moment) on Girls. To make things a little easier on ourselves, we checked out brunch spots at some of the city's most stylish hotels and came up with 8 unbeatable options in the process. From seasonal French fare on the Upper East Side to Roman-Italian dishes in Gramercy Park, here's where we're headed next.
Locanda Verde, The Greenwich Hotel
Chef Andrew Carmellini’s rustic Italian taverna has a lot going for it – just ask its high-profile clientele (ahem, Andrew Garfield). Carving out a home in Robert de Niro’s boutique TriBeCa hotel, the casual eatery slays brunch with both health-conscious and hearty options like zucchini frittata with roasted tomato, onion, goat cheese and basil, and hazelnut-crusted French toast with citrus and mint. If you’re brunching with a group, go all in on starters like ricotta pound cake and cinnamon sugar monkey bread. First and foremost, just make sure you get a round of spiked Tre Stelle cocktails for a refreshing pop of pomegranate, valencia and blood orange, and prosecco.
Reynard, The Wythe Hotel
In hipper-than-thou Williamsburg, the Wythe Hotel wows even the most persnickety of hipsters with industrial-chic design (a happy byproduct of the building’s days as a textile factory) and killer views of Manhattan across the East River. Onsite Reynard – Andrew Tarlow’s lofty, brick-walled New American eatery – just so happens to up the spot's X-factor. Bring your appetite in order to feast on cast-iron pancakes with caramelized bananas, pecans, and maple syrup, and slow-roasted lamb leg with almond salsa, sunny eggs and watercress. Starting (and ending) with cold brew colada – scotch, rum, pineapple, coconut, cold brew coffee, and whipped cream – also wouldn't hurt.
Maialino, Gramercy Park Hotel
Saturdays and Sundays are the best time to roll into Jimmy Fallon, Kate Hudson and Uma Thurman’s historic hood. No – not because you're any more likely to run into them or any other celebs/socialites, but because that's when brunch at the Gramercy Park Hotel’s Maialino is served. You really can't go wrong with any of the Roman-Italian trattoria’s options, but the indulgent house made pastries (think: cherry cream cheese crumb cake and olive oil muffins), cacio e pepe eggs, and porchetta sandwiches are the talk of the town.
La Sirena Ristorante, Maritime Hotel
Running a fleet of critically-acclaimed restaurants (not only in the city, but around the country) is no small feat – especially when you have to see eye to eye with a partner. But despite it all, Mario Batali and Joe Bastianich just keep pumping out success story after success story. The latest in their arsenal – La Sirena, at Chelsea’s Maritime Hotel – is a sophisticated, 60s-inspired space with an expansive patio and 38-foot marble bar. Most come for the bright mod decor, but everyone stays for the avocado bruschetta, Spaniard hamburger, and amaretti mascarpone pancakes, washed down with white peach bellinis, Sirena spritzes, and Bloody Marys.
Gemma, The Bowery Hotel
Though wax-coated candelabras, well-worn wooden tables, and cabinets full of wine clamor for attention inside Gemma's walls, we’ll always opt for sidewalk seating when the weather’s right. NYC is a people-watching paradise, and the Bowery’s scenesters put on a show like no other, after all. But whether indoors or out, diners at the brasserie will find a lengthy cocktail menu (check out the Vivien Leigh with botanist gin, elderflower, grapefruit and lemon) and appetite-inducing Italian options like caprese frittata, orecchiette al broccoli, and an array of wood-fired pizzas.
Marta, The Redbury New York
Prix fixe is the way to go at Marta – The Rebury New York’s answer to modern Italian. Take a seat in the open dining room – within view of the spot’s two wood-burning ovens – and decide between a Bloody Mary or Mimosa before weighing your antipasto and entree options. We lean towards the ricotta e pere (ricotta, oven-roasted pears, grilled sourdough, and aged balsamic) and the patate alla carbonara (white pizza with potatoes, guanciale, black pepper, pecorino, and egg).
Café Boulud, The Surrey Hotel
Blink and you’ll miss Sunday brunch at The Surrey Hotel’s Café Boulud; but show up as it starts and you’ll have plenty of time to enjoy chef Daniel Boulud's seasonal French fare. The elegant UES staple dishes up classics like Croque Madame (a croissant dressed with an egg sunny-side up, Parisian ham, gruyère, roasted potatoes, and market greens) and Swiss chard ravioli (with quail egg, currant, kohlrabi, pine nut, and parmesan breadcrumbs).
The Clocktower, The New York EDITION
On the second floor of the New York EDITION, Michelin-starred chef Jason Atherton’s Clocktower affords Madison Square Park views. While certainly a nice perk, we think you’ll be taken more by the interior decor – an ultra-chic combination of dark mahogany doors, gallery walls filled with portraiture in gold leaf frames, velvet banquette seating, and ornate ivory ceilings. As for the menu, “British sensibilities” reign, so even if you start with a salad of some sort, end with the crispy fish and chips (with mushy peas, triple cooked chips, and tartar sauce) – we bet you’ve never seen fried Icelandic cod so prettily plated.