New York City

The 6 Best Brunch Spots in NYC

The best places to get brunch in NYC.


Brunch in New York City is often jokingly referred to as the big city’s primary religion. Locals head to their favorite hot spots to wake up with a fresh cup of coffee, or beat the hangover with more drinking. Meanwhile, tourists receive puzzled looks from restaurant hosts when asking for a “lunch” menu at 1 p.m. on a Sunday. “Where are you visiting from?” they ask politely, confirming that this is the guest’s first experience with NYC Brunch.

Here is a list of some of my favorite spots throughout Manhattan. Whether it’s a spectacular view, relaxing ambiance or one-of-a-kind food, these liquored lunch locales each have something unique and special to offer.

 Narcissa25 Cooper Square (Between 5th & 6th Sts.)

The 6 Best Brunch Spots in NYC

Named for a particularly feisty dairy cow at André Balazs’ farm upstate, Narcissa’s fresh farm-to-table menu is full of vibrant ingredients and creative dishes. Bowery is becoming the “new meatpacking” with hotels like The Standard East creating a place to stay, eat, see and been seen. With great ambiance and both indoor and outdoor seating, this is our top pick for brunch. Stay around and grab a cocktail or coffee at Café Standard.

Balthazar80 Spring St. (Between Broadway & Crosby)

The 6 Best Brunch Spots in NYC

Balthazar can easily be considered the quintessential New York City brunch. Converted from a leather wholesaler’s warehouse, the well-known SoHo restaurant serves delicious bistro fare in an authentically French setting packed with a lively mix of artists, celebrities, locals and tourists. In her famous 73-question interview with Vogue, Anna Wintour is asked where she would like to eat the following week. Before her secretary is even finishes asking the question, she blurts out “Balthazar.” Even with a reservation, wait times are somewhat lengthy, so expect to spend some time standing at the crowded zinc bar. But not to fret– the Brioche French Toast is definitely worth it.

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Avatar of Hilary Rowland

A writer, artist, and designer since she was young enough to put pencil to paper, Hilary taught herself code and created Urbanette when she was a teenager. Currently, she lives in Monte Carlo, but spent the past decade living in NYC, still considers herself a New Yorker, and visits regularly. She's always traveling, looking for hot new topics, destinations, and life hacks to bring to Urbanette readers.

Reader Discussion: 9 Comments

  1. Avatar of Olivia walker

    Olivia walker

    I don’t know if this is a good idea or not. But if it excuses me for having a snack in between my breakfast and lunch. I sure love that. Now I’m gonna go and find 1 of these spots and experience it for my self.

  2. Avatar of Alice Tan

    Alice Tan

    Cool selection. Always wanted to try brunch, sadly too lazy to do it. It’s too late for breakfast and to early for lunch, and I cant get up early enough or late enough for it.

  3. Avatar of Jen Spillane

    Jen Spillane

    I always find Gallow Green as a perfect place for catching up with a friend. It lets me enjoy the gorgeous city views while delighting in a variety of classic, locally sourced brunch.

    Each time I visit this place, I couldn’t stop admiring the ambiance and how this precious of a rooftop was “only in New York…”

  4. Avatar of Chris Naselli

    Narcissa is the new Pastis… I love that place, especially the outdoors area. Perfection!

  5. Avatar of Trish Potter

    Trish Potter

    I’ve been to Balthazar a few times and it’s pleasant enough but a bit too busy and crowded for my likings. Plus there aren’t that many vegan choices, I prefer Candle 79 for dinners or Candle Cafe for more informal dining.

  6. Avatar of Hannah Mayers

    Hannah Mayers

    The most relaxing place where I love to start my weekend with freshly squeezed orange juice and eggs is at Buvette. It’s located at 42 Grove Street 🙂

  7. Avatar of Courtney Watson

    Courtney Watson

    I would like to add “The Cupping Room Café” at 359 W. Broadway.

    I love the cozy atmosphere and it really offers delicious and very reasonably priced brunch staples 🙂

  8. Avatar of Christine Muchoe

    Christine Muchoe

    Omg, brunch is my favorite daytime activity and my favorite nighttime activity is thinking about what I’m going to eat for brunch the next day. Seriously obsessed. Absolutely love Gallow Green and would recommend to anyone. Great atmosphere. Been to Tavern 29 for happy hour but didn’t even know they had a brunch! Definitely trying it. Thanks for the tip! 🙂

  9. Avatar of Jude Vargas

    I love Balthazar 😀 This is the only restaurant I want to have brunch in, even though it’s always full and reservations are difficult. But thanks to you, I know where else to go, will definitely try the others!

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