Brunching In NYC: Best Brunch on the Upper East Side

New York City, a bustling metropolis renowned for its dynamic food scene, has witnessed a surge in the popularity of brunch, transforming it into a weekend ritual for many. This mid-morning meal offers a perfect blend of breakfast flavors and leisurely dining, making the quest for the best brunch spots an exciting endeavor for food enthusiasts.

Nestled among the historic brownstones and chic boutiques, the Upper East Side stands out as an enclave of culinary delights. This neighborhood boasts an array of restaurants that have mastered the art of brunch, each presenting a menu brimming with innovative dishes that cater to diverse palates.

  • Culinary Scene: With chefs drawing inspiration from global cuisines and local ingredients, the Upper East Side’s brunch offerings are as eclectic as they are delicious.
  • Leisurely Dining: Whether you’re in search of a cozy café or an elegant eatery, this neighborhood invites you to unwind over a cup of coffee or a mimosa.
  • Weekend Ritual: For locals and visitors alike, brunch on the Upper East Side is more than just a meal—it’s a weekend staple that embodies New York City’s love for good food and good company.

As you venture through the tree-lined streets of this prestigious area, prepare to indulge in some of the most sought-after brunch experiences the city has to offer.

1. Hutch & Waldo

Nestled within the charming streets of the Upper East Side, Hutch & Waldo is a beloved spot among locals who adore brunch. This Australian-inspired café creates an inviting atmosphere that appeals to brunch enthusiasts.

With its relaxed vibe and friendly staff, this cozy restaurant invites guests to enjoy leisurely mid-morning meals while experiencing genuine Aussie hospitality.

A Brunch Experience Like No Other

What sets Hutch & Waldo apart is not just its ambiance but also its menu. Each brunch specialty here is not only delicious but also beautifully presented, making it perfect for snapping Instagram-worthy photos.

Here are some of the must-try dishes when you dine at Hutch & Waldo:

  1. Smashed Avocado: A colorful and nutritious dish featuring smashed avocado, tangy feta cheese, and perfectly poached eggs on crispy sourdough toast.
  2. Ricotta Hotcakes: These fluffy pancakes are a dream come true! Served with a dollop of honeycomb butter, fresh berries, and a drizzle of maple syrup, they are guaranteed to satisfy your sweet tooth.
  3. The Big Brekkie: Calling all breakfast lovers! This hearty platter includes eggs cooked any style you like, crispy bacon, juicy sausages, sautéed mushrooms, roasted tomatoes, and a side of crusty sourdough bread.

Fresh Ingredients, Unforgettable Flavors

At Hutch & Waldo, every dish is made with care using only the finest locally sourced ingredients. This commitment to quality ensures that each bite bursts with flavor and leaves a lasting impression on your taste buds.

Whether you’re in the mood for something light and refreshing or craving a hearty meal to fuel your weekend adventures, Hutch & Waldo’s innovative menu has got you covered.

So why wait? Head over to Hutch & Waldo now and treat yourself to a brunch experience like no other!

2. Bluestone Lane

Experience the essence of Australian-inspired café culture at Bluestone Lane on the Upper East Side. This cozy yet vibrant spot stands out with its bright, beachy interiors and an emphasis on premium coffee and healthy eats. You’ll find a community of brunch enthusiasts here, drawn in by the inviting atmosphere and a menu that reflects a passion for quality.

When you visit Bluestone Lane, you’ll love their outstanding brunch options:

Avocado Smash

A signature dish that’s more than your usual avocado toast. It comes with feta cheese, cherry tomatoes, and sunflower sprouts, creating a delightful combination of flavors and textures.

Coconut Quinoa Porridge

A warm and nourishing choice perfect for chilly mornings in NYC. It’s served with seasonal fruits and honey, adding a touch of natural sweetness to the dish.

Big Brekkie

If you have a big appetite, this platter has got you covered! It includes eggs prepared to your liking, bacon, roasted tomatoes, grilled chorizo sausages, mushrooms, and baked beans – everything you need for a hearty breakfast.

Each dish is carefully made to bring a taste of Australian life to the heart of New York City. Whether you’re there for the coffee or their creative brunch plates, Bluestone Lane has established itself as a top spot for morning meals on the Upper East Side.

3. Cafe d’Alsace

Located on the Upper East Side, Cafe d’Alsace is a top choice for brunch due to its unique combination of traditional French-German food with an Alsatian twist. This restaurant offers an inviting European atmosphere and a menu that showcases the flavors of northeastern France.

Must-Try Dishes at Cafe d’Alsace:

  • Tarte Flambée: An Alsatian specialty similar to a thin-crust pizza, topped with onions, crème fraîche, and lardons.
  • Choucroute Garnie: A satisfying dish featuring sauerkraut, various meats, and potatoes, ideal for those who prefer savory brunch options.
  • Omelette Aux Fruits De Mer: A delicious omelet filled with fresh seafood, herbs, and cheese – a true testament to the cafe’s creativity in the kitchen.

Cafe d’Alsace stands out among the dining establishments in the Upper East Side by staying true to its roots and offering high-quality dishes. From the wide selection of imported beers at the bar to the culinary expertise of its chefs, it’s easy to see why this place remains one of the best spots for foodies in the area.

4. Seamore’s

When you enter Seamore’s on the Upper East Side, you’ll be welcomed by a calm, beach-inspired atmosphere that immediately sets the mood for a relaxed brunch. This seafood-focused restaurant has become popular among brunch lovers for its sustainable fish and lively ambiance. The restaurant takes pride in providing a clear sea-to-table dining experience, making it an outstanding choice in the area.

Must-Try Brunch Dishes at Seamore’s:

  • The Reel Deal: Enjoy this special dish featuring fresh fish from the market served with seasonal accompaniments.
  • Lobster Benedict: A fancy version of a traditional favorite, with poached eggs and delicious lobster covered in creamy hollandaise sauce.
  • Avocado Toast: Take your brunch up a notch with this classic dish topped with crunchy shallots and pumpkin seeds for extra crunchiness.
  • Health Kick Bowl: If you prefer lighter options, this bowl is packed with quinoa, avocado, kale, and fresh vegetables.

Seamore’s dedication to using the best ingredients and creative presentation ensures that every dish is not only delicious but also an experience to remember.

B. Cafe

When you step into B. Cafe, you’ll feel the warm ambiance of a typical Belgian bistro in the Upper East Side. Known for its European flair and cozy atmosphere, B. Cafe attracts brunch enthusiasts who want a taste of Belgium in the heart of New York City.

Brunch Specialties at B. Cafe:

  • Belgian Waffles: A classic must-have, served golden and crispy, topped with fresh berries and a dollop of whipped cream.
  • Eggs Benedict: Reinvented with a Belgian twist, featuring fine herbed waffles as the base for poached eggs and velvety hollandaise sauce.
  • Moules Frites: Enjoy steamed mussels served with the famous Belgian fries, a savory delight that takes you straight to the streets of Brussels.

Each dish is carefully made with traditional ingredients and flavors, making sure that your brunch experience at B. Cafe is both authentic and unforgettable. Whether you want something sweet or filling, this hidden treasure has plenty of choices to satisfy your mid-morning hunger.

6. Maya

At Maya, you don’t just have brunch; you embark on a flavorful journey through contemporary Mexican cuisine right in the heart of the Upper East Side. This restaurant has a vibrant atmosphere where the smells of traditional spices mix perfectly with modern cooking techniques. Maya’s popularity among brunch lovers is not by chance; it’s because they are dedicated to providing an amazing dining experience.

When you look at Maya’s brunch menu, some dishes stand out for their creative mix of flavors:

  • Chilaquiles: A traditional dish made with crispy tortillas, cooked in a bold salsa roja, and topped with crema, queso fresco, and a choice of chicken or eggs for that perfect brunch classic.
  • Huevos Rancheros: These are not your usual ranch-style eggs. At Maya, they serve them over blue corn tortillas with black beans and salsa, taking a classic to new levels.
  • Carnitas Hash: If you want something filling, the tender pork carnitas paired with crunchy potatoes and poached eggs will satisfy any hunger.

The creativity shown in these dishes is why Maya is a top choice for those looking for more than just food—they offer a taste adventure that keeps customers coming back.

7. EJ’s Luncheonette

Located in the heart of the Upper East Side, EJ’s Luncheonette is a popular spot for brunch enthusiasts who enjoy traditional dishes with a twist. Step inside and you’ll find yourself transported to a retro American diner from the 1950s, complete with vintage decor and a cozy ambiance.

Must-Try Brunch Dishes at EJ’s:

Here are some of the top recommendations from their brunch menu:

  1. Stuffed French Toast: Thick slices of French toast filled with creamy cheese and juicy berries, finished off with a drizzle of maple syrup.
  2. Corned Beef Hash: A hearty dish featuring EJ’s special corned beef hash, served alongside perfectly poached eggs and a side of toast.
  3. Egg Creams: Don’t leave without trying an authentic New York egg cream – a fizzy concoction made with milk, soda water, and chocolate syrup.

“I love coming to EJ’s for brunch! The staff is always friendly and the food never disappoints.” – A satisfied customer

Whether you’re in the mood for something savory or sweet, EJ’s Luncheonette has got you covered with their innovative menu that promises to take your brunch experience up a notch.

8. Sojourn: A Culinary Gem in the Upper East Side

Located in the heart of the Upper East Side, Sojourn is a standout destination for brunch lovers. This restaurant offers a unique and sophisticated dining experience that’s perfect for those looking for something different.

Why Sojourn Stands Out

What sets Sojourn apart is its combination of cozy atmosphere and creative menu. Whether you’re looking for a savory breakfast or a sweet indulgence, they have something for everyone.

Must-Try Brunch Dishes at Sojourn

Here are some of the top dishes you shouldn’t miss when visiting Sojourn:

  1. Savory Omelets: These omelets are fully customizable with fresh ingredients, giving you a classic breakfast with a twist.
  2. Short Rib Hash: If you’re a meat lover, this hearty dish featuring tender short ribs will surely satisfy your appetite.
  3. Banana Bread Pudding French Toast: A treat for those with a sweet tooth, this dish combines two comfort foods into one delicious creation.
  4. Smoked Salmon Benedict: For seafood enthusiasts, this elegant take on the traditional eggs benedict offers a perfect balance of flavors.

The Sojourn Experience

Each dish on Sojourn’s menu showcases their dedication to innovation and excellence. From the presentation to the taste, you can expect nothing but the best.

With its intimate setting and culinary expertise, it’s no wonder that Sojourn has become a favorite among brunch-goers in the Upper East Side.

9. The Penrose

Located in the middle of the Upper East Side, The Penrose greets brunch enthusiasts with its cozy atmosphere and a menu that combines both creativity and familiarity. This gastropub stands out for its vintage design, reminding you of an old-fashioned bar, yet filled with the liveliness of a modern restaurant. Customers often praise The Penrose for its energetic vibe that perfectly matches their laid-back brunches.

Must-Try Brunch Dishes at The Penrose:

  • Eggs Benedict: A timeless favorite made with house-cured salmon or country ham, topped with a perfectly cooked egg and hollandaise sauce.
  • Avocado Toast: Taken up a notch with crispy quinoa, feta cheese, and poached eggs — a delightful mix of textures and flavors.
  • Stuffed French Toast: A treat for those who love sweets, this dish spoils you with creamy mascarpone filling and fresh berries, drizzled generously with maple syrup.

Each plate demonstrates the skillfulness of The Penrose’s chefs, transforming brunch into more than just a meal. While you enjoy their specialties, you’ll discover why this place is always included in the Upper East Side’s lively brunch scene.

10. The East Pole

Located in the heart of the Upper East Side, The East Pole stands out as a favorite spot for brunch lovers. The restaurant prides itself on serving brunch dishes made with fresh ingredients sourced directly from local farms. Its atmosphere combines old-world charm with modern elegance, creating a warm and welcoming environment that complements its innovative menu.

Brunch Options at The East Pole:

  • House Smoked Salmon – This dish perfectly showcases their attention to detail, served with carefully crafted accompaniments.
  • Apple Cider Doughnuts – A delightful treat, these doughnuts pay homage to traditional American flavors with a gourmet twist.
  • The East Pole Burger – If you’re in the mood for something hearty, this burger is a true work of art, featuring organic beef and a unique house-made sauce.

Each dish on their brunch menu reflects their passion for culinary innovation and excellence. When you dine at The East Pole, get ready to indulge in a symphony of flavors that are just as refined as the neighborhood it resides in.


The Upper East Side, a neighborhood bursting with culinary delights, invites you to indulge in its brunch scene that’s as diverse as it is delectable.

Each restaurant detailed here stands out for its unique approach to brunch, ensuring that whether you’re in the mood for something innovative or a comforting classic, your mid-morning cravings will be satisfied.

You’re not just choosing a meal; you’re embarking on a culinary adventure that promises to be as enriching as it is appetizing.

Each venue is a testament to the creativity and passion that define the best brunch spots on the Upper East Side.

Embrace this guide as an invitation to explore, experience, and enjoy. With these recommendations in hand, you’re well on your way to creating memorable weekends filled with delightful food and vibrant atmospheres.

FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)

What is the growing brunch culture in New York City?

The growing brunch culture in New York City is characterized by people always being on the lookout for the best spots to enjoy a leisurely mid-morning meal.

Can you provide an introduction to the Upper East Side as a neighborhood known for its culinary scene?

The Upper East Side is a vibrant neighborhood known for its culinary scene, with a particular focus on brunch offerings.

What are some must-try items from Hutch & Waldo’s brunch menu?

Some must-try items from Hutch & Waldo’s brunch menu include their unique and creative dishes that are popular among brunch enthusiasts in the area.

What makes Bluestone Lane restaurant unique and popular among brunch enthusiasts in the Upper East Side?

Bluestone Lane restaurant is known for its unique features and popularity among brunch enthusiasts in the area, offering must-try items from their creative brunch menu.

Why is Cafe d’Alsace popular among brunch enthusiasts in the Upper East Side?

Cafe d’Alsace is popular among brunch enthusiasts for its unique features and creativity showcased in their must-try items from the brunch menu.

What sets Seamore’s apart as a popular spot for brunch in the Upper East Side?

Seamore’s stands out as a popular spot for brunch due to its unique features and creativity showcased in their must-try items from the brunch menu.

What are some of the must-try items from EJ’s Luncheonette’s brunch menu?

EJ’s Luncheonette offers must-try items on their brunch menu, showcasing creativity and uniqueness that appeals to brunch enthusiasts in the area.

Why should readers explore the vibrant brunch scene of the Upper East Side?

Readers should explore the vibrant brunch scene of the Upper East Side to try out recommended restaurants for a memorable culinary experience, given the neighborhood’s reputation for its culinary offerings.