Sure, going for a bottomless brunch in NYC is good any time of year. But, something about this time of year just makes it more special. With the holiday season quickly approaching, we’re all preparing ourselves for the onslaught of family and friend get-togethers.
It’s been a while since travel has been so easy, with the pandemic making going anywhere for the 2020 holidays a bit too risky in many cases. But, thanks to the accessibility of the COVID-19 vaccination, Thanksgiving and Christmas (or Hanukkah or New Year’s) can be spent with all of your favorite people once again.
And what better thing to do with old pals and all your cousins than go and grab brunch in the city? This past summer, we did a piece on the best bottomless brunch spots in NYC, and we think it’s about time we expand on that with more options for bottomless brunch in NYC during the winter. Because it’s tourist season in New York, we’re going to let you all in on some smaller spots that get a little less traction but that are way too exceptional not to visit.
Ho-ho-holes in the wall
Not everywhere can be Eleven Madison Park, OK? And, in all actuality, the holidays are already expensive enough. A hefty brunch bill may not be financially feasible for the majority of us. What’s great, though, is that New York has some of the best low-cost brunch spots in the world. The best part? These places are pretty much tourist-free.
The Shady Lady – Astoria, Queens
At The Shady Lady, every brunch entree includes one tea or coffee and one brunch cocktail (or non-alcoholic juice). Their signature Shady Royale is included in this cocktail list; it’s made of bourbon, pomegranate, lemon, simple syrup, cranberry and cayenne pepper. Omelets, pancakes, brunch sandwiches, poached egg specials … This menu is absolutely stacked. They usually run a bottomless brunch special for US$25 for “unlimited dranks,” so get there early!
Forgtmenot – Chinatown, Manhattan
Another weekend brunch place, you may have to squeeze into this place. It’s worth wedging into a booth with a smaller group here. Both drinks and food are on the cheaper side. They offer something called a Hootsla Brunch, as well as Egg Nachos, and you won’t be disappointed by anything on this menu. With a classic Bloody Mary, a Montauk, Moscow Mule and gin and tonic each under US$10, you’ll be wondering if you’re still in Manhattan when you get the bill.
Address: 138 Division St
Jasper’s Taphouse and Kitchen – Hell’s Kitchen, Manhattan
Every Saturday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., Jasper’s serves a bottomless brunch featuring diner faves with a few twists. You can look forward to eating Fried Chicken and Red Velvet Waffles or a custard-soaked French toast. Along with the usual classic cocktails, Jasper’s also serves a mango mimosa and a house lager.
An Beal Bocht Cafe – Kingsbridge, Bronx
An authentic Irish pub, An Beal Bocht is a great no-fuss brunch place for the day following a night out. They even offer a Traditional Irish Breakfast (and a vegetarian alternative) on their brunch menu – along with other favorites like huevos rancheros, pancakes and French toast. Each brunch plate comes with a complimentary Bloody Mary, jalapeño-infused Bloody Mary or a mimosa.
Trendy spots for impressing the relatives
If you’re looking to impress some visiting relatives or out-of-town friends (or you just prefer something on the swankier side), we’ve got you covered when it comes to some of the more bougie brunch spots in NYC. Reservations are recommended.
Miss Lily’s 7A Cafe – East Village, Manhattan
A staple of East Village, Miss Lily’s is known as a “Caribbean oasis” with two downtown locations. If the retro diner decor with Jamaican flair isn’t enough to catch your attention, the menu will be. Just the appetizers are mouthwatering – the Jerk Corn and Hot Pepper Shrimp both look excellent. You can also order a signature brunch entree like the Breakfast Roti or the Classic Oxtail Stew. With both signature and seasonal cocktails, you could spend all day here catching up with those you’ve been missing.
Sugar Freak – Long Island City, Queens
Serving up starters like Brunch Beignet Sliders and entrees the likes of Chicken and Waffle Benedict and Shrimp Creole and Cheese Grits, it’ll be difficult to choose what to order. The sides look crazy good too, with Praline Bacon high up on the list. On the cocktail list, Sugar Freak has an entire section dedicated to “Louisiana Favorites.” We don’t know about you, but the Zombie looks good to us.
Black Barn – NoMad, Manhattan
Black Barn encourages reservations, and for good reason! Here, the atmosphere is almost as awesome as the food. Of course, this kind of place has avocado toast as the first thing on the brunch menu. But hey, if it works, it works. The brunch desserts are what have really caught our eye. Butterscotch Bread Pudding? Yes, please! Known for their extensive wine list, definitely come here to try a glass of something new.
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