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Best Brunch in the Upper West Side, NYC

Best Brunch in the Upper West Side, NYC

The diversity of the cuisine at these best brunch spots in The Upper West Side reflects the tangible, vibrant energy of this flourishing community. This is a nabe worth exploring, no matter which part of the city you happen to live in, so plan to make a day of it.

Good Enough To Eat - NYC

The delicious brunch, lunch and dinner options that are available at this cozy, rustic restaurant are more than just good enough to eat. This is some of the best American comfort food that you will ever eat. The seasoning is spot on. Never too much or too little.

And the ingredients are literally farmed fresh. There's no need for the management to do a p.r. marketing campaign telling the world that this is classic farm to table dining. You can tell from the first fork or spoonful that the veggies, meats, fruits and eggs have not been sitting around in a supermarket cold case or on a shelf for days (or weeks).

This is exactly what Carrie Levin set out to do, way back in 1981, when she founded the first Good Enough To Eat restaurant. Carrie's business evolved slowly but surely, over the years, until she achieved near-legendary status as one of the first chefs in New York to make traditional American cooking popular and trendy.

Several locations later, Carrie opened up her current upper west side cafe. Carrie has since brought on new partners but still works as a consultant, designing the menus and making sure that he impeccable standards are kept up.

You will be able to sit back and relax amidst farmhouse themed decor. When you look around you'll feel as though you're enjoying a hearty breakfast in the quaint dining room of a Hudson Valley bed and breakfast. There's no better way to take the edge off a stress-filled New York day.

Breakfast and brunch are served weekdays from 8 AM until 4 PM. On Saturday and Sunday, brunch hours are from 9 AM to 4 PM.

The first thing that attracted the attention of hungry foodies was Carrie's bountiful breakfast dishes. Good Enough to Eat made its reputation on Carrie's inventive take on country breakfast plates.

There are a half-dozen varieties of pancakes to choose from including her signature four-grain oatmeal flapjacks with a side of outrageous strawberry butter. You can also order a trio of these made from scratch, fluffy pancakes, topped with actual blueberries, not stuff from out of a can.
A popular item, indeed, is Carrie's apple flapjack, You get one large (and it is really big) pancake that is filled with sliced apples. The pancake is topped with an apple-raisin compote, sour cream and a sprinkling of cinnamon - sugar.

Waffle and French Toast fans haven't been left out of the picture by any means.
GoodEnoughToEat
Guys, pay attention! Carrie has got something off the charts special for you. The bacon waffle! Your waffle is made with pieces of double-smoked bacon. Unbelievable. A side of fresh fruit takes the edge off of your meat-centric meal. No need for a guilty conscious here.
But the waffles here are so tasty, you can eat them plain. They do, however, have organic maple syrup from Doerfler farm. The real deal, this syrup is just right to add to pancakes or waffles. Not too sweet.

Another breakfast or brunch option is their cinnamon swirl French toast. It's even better when topped with sliced farm fresh peaches.

All egg and omelet dishes are made with eggs from Brey farms up in Bethel New York. Delicious buttermilk biscuits, made fresh every day by the pastry chef, accompany all egg dishes.

The country scramble is a piping hot skillet of new potatoes, onions and three eggs. The vegan tofu scramble comes with your choice of a house salad or brown rice and pita bread or whole wheat toast.

Some of Carrie's omelets are named after different neighborhoods. The Astoria omelet consists of spinach, house-made sausage and, what else, but Feta cheese.
Sun-dried tomatoes, roasted mushrooms and fresh mozzarella provide plenty of flavor to the Little Italy omelet.

A major player in what constitutes a great, not just a decent brunch are the cocktails. The mixologists at Good Enough to Eat have come up with some dazzling gems for you to sip and enjoy.
Super refreshing is the Wavy lemonade, that's made with Citron vodka, St. Germain and homemade pink lemonade. Champagne, St.Germain and pear puree give the Pear Peak just the right amount of taste, kick and fizz.

The drink list offers a few different versions of the brunch classic cocktail, the Bloody Mary. The "all-in" option adds a slice of bacon as well as a skewer of olives stuffed with Maytag blue cheese to this spicy drink.

Location and Hours

520 Columbus Avenue
New York, NY 10024
(212) 496-0163
www.goodenoughtoeat.com

Hours

Monday to Friday 8 AM to 10:30 PM
Saturday and Sunday 9 AM to 10:30 PM

The Mermaid Inn - NYC

New Yorkers love to do brunch. It's part of our DNA. Constantly busy trying to juggle work and family, brunch is a much-needed respite from the general craziness that is the cost of doing business and living in the Big Apple.

We all have our favorite neighborhood brunch spots. Usually located within a few blocks from our apartment, these bars, restaurants and cafes are comfortable and familiar, like a pair of jeans or shoes that we just cannot do without.
But, familiarity can also breed boredom. It's sometimes a good idea to change things up and get out of our comfort zone. If you have friends who live in other parts of the city, why not meet them for brunch and check out their favorite places?

And you can always do a little research on your own, right here on the Aplez.com blog and see what other neighborhoods have to offer in terms of destination brunch spots.

One such restaurant that is well worth an Uber or subway ride is The Mermaid Inn.

Located on the upper west side, in a very interesting and eclectic neighborhood that has a ton of personality, The Mermaid Inn is all about Oysters, craft cocktails and a heavenly brunch.

With an intimate feel and understated decor, the restaurant has a date night vibe going for it. On a sunny Summer day, you will be able to catch fashionably dressed couples outside on the patio, enjoying their eggs and brunch cocktails. It's a great place for friends to meet and catch up, after a hectic work-week.

You won't find many brunch places anywhere in town that offers a full raw bar. At the Mermaid Inn, you will find a vast array of tempting delights from King Neptune's sea, including fresh as can be oysters, Little Neck clams, succulent shrimp as well as delightful dishes like yellowfin tuna crudo. How's that for a big-time AM brunch wake-up call?

The chef and owners have come up with a cute little app designed specifically for oyster lovers. Oysterpedia takes the guesswork out of ordering these delicious pearls of the ocean.

This informative and entertaining app gives you some very useful tidbits related to all things oyster. Did you know that the flavor of an oyster changes based on several variables like the location of the oyster beds and the method of cultivation?
Want to know more? Simply visit the Mermaid Inn's website and download their app!

Brunch delights include shrimp and grits as well as the kitchen's signature Greek yogurt pancakes with sliced bananas and strawberries.
The farmer's market platter will take care of your appetite for the rest of the day. This dish consists of poached eggs, a heaping portion of vegetables dressed with basil pesto, arugula and a side of fresh-baked Sourdough bread.

They are also known for turning out some fabulous burgers. The mermaid Burger is topped with Grafton cheddar and mesquite ketchup. This juicy patty is served all day and comes on a pretzel bun.

To wash your brunch dish down the hatch, you can choose from a well-curated list of craft beers including Coney Island Mermaid (no relation to the Inn) Pilsner.

Also available for your brunching pleasure are domestic and imported wine and cocktails.

Try the Cool Intentions, which blends organic cucumber vodka with basil, lemon and cucumber juice. The Mermaid Mary combines a generous pour of Tito's vodka with Old Bay spiced bloody Mary mix.
Another popular drink here is the Pink Flamingo, a mix of gin, strawberry juice, lemon juice and basil syrup.

The service is always courteous and efficient. At the end of your meal, your server will bring you a small complimentary dish of chocolate pudding. That is as cool as can be!

Location and Hours

570 Amsterdam Avenue
New York, NY 10024
(212) 799-7400
www.themermaidnyc.com

Hours

Sunday and Monday 5 PM to 10 PM
Tuesday to Saturday 5 PM to 10:30 PM

Brunch
Saturday and Sunday 11 AM to 2:30 PM

The Smith - NYC

Featuring a menu that showcases an inventive approach to bistro and brunch favorites as well as some delicious craft cocktails, The Smith is located just across the street from Lincoln Center.

This cozy restaurant is a popular spot for opera buffs, concert-goers, and local residents. When they want to kick back, relax and take a much-needed break from classroom study and cafeteria food, the students and faculty at Fordham University's Lincoln Center campus retreat to The Smith for some edible delights.

The Smith celebrates the creator in us all. Whether it be a locksmith, cook smith or blacksmith, a smith has traditionally been a maker, a doer; someone who is skilled at creating something.
Here at the Smith, management believes that everyone can be a maker, in their own unique way, from the cooks, bartenders and servers to the guests. We can ALL be The Smith, as it were.

Their mission is to make people happy. The staff here certainly excels at their craft, particularly when it comes to turning out a memorable brunch experience.

You can choose to do brunch inside their sleek, modern dining room or outdoors at their spectacular sidewalk cafe. The view of the magnificent architecture at Lincoln Center is a great complement to your brunch cocktail. The al fresco cafe is ideal for a long, leisurely brunch in the sunshine. What a way to start your weekend!

The chef and owners know that consistency is the key to an enjoyable meal. They have high standards and put a great deal of thought and care into every bite.

Ingredients for tasty dishes such as their Breakfast Pot Pie are sourced from local farms, farmer's markets and respected meat and cheese purveyors. One of their most requested dishes by far, the Pot Pie consists of a couple of sunny-side-up eggs, sweet sausage, bacon, Cremini mushrooms, all of which are covered by a cheddar biscuit. The natural gravy is to die for.

The truffled mushroom toast on a ciabatta roll, with eggs and Fontina cheese, is also quite popular as is the egg white omelet. Now, egg whites are super healthy but they can be rather bland. Not here, though. This omelet is filled with shallots, goat cheese, baby spinach and mixed greens. Another signature brunch dish is the Benedict Johnny. Luscious ingredients like chicken maple sausage, poached eggs, and roasted tomato hollandaise rest easy on cheddar cornbread. The Benedict is accompanied by the kitchen's expertly seasoned home fries.
TheSmith
Other menu items include scrumptious ricotta pancakes and short rib hash with Jalapeno cheddar grits.

Their coffee bar is the absolute best. If you like, you can spike your cup of Joe or espresso, with a boozy shot, for a very modest additional charge.

That's not a bad option to have, but why not just go straight for the cocktails? Keep things light with their Bellini, which blends Prosecco with a refreshing peach puree. On the more creative side, The Barnstormer brings Aperol, Bourbon and Italian bitters together with Prosecco and grapefruit juice.

Live the high life and strike a pose with The Great Gatsby. F. Scott Fitzgerald's anti-hero would have loved this cocktail which consists of local Brooklyn gin, Raspberry and lemon juice as well as sparkling wine. So very refined and super cool.

Location and Hours

1900 Broadway at 63rd Street
New York, NY 10023
(212) 496-5700
www.ellakitchenbar.com

Hours

Monday to Thursday 7:30 AM to 12 AM
Friday 7:30 AM to 1 AM
Saturday 9 AM to 1 AM
Sunday 9 AM to 12 AM

Ella Kitchen and Bar

This warm, friendly restaurant brings a touch of Spain and Argentina to the Upper West Side. Here, you will enjoy a menu that features Latin-Mediterranean fusion cuisine.


Casual but chic, Ella bar and Kitchen has a cozy and intimate tapas bar ambiance. There's a small, open kitchen located at the back of the restaurant. The rustic bar would not be out of place inside of a tapas cafe along the Spanish seacoast.

Authentic Argentinian and Spanish knickknacks are displayed throughout the dining room. A collection of eye-catching contemporary and Victorian-era mirrors decorate one of the walls where the banquettes are. On date night, you can both sit by the bar, at a high-topped marble table, and enjoy a small plate or two together with a refreshing glass of sangria.

You can also take advantage of their cute, but extremely small outdoor seating area. if you are doing brunch here, get to Ella's early so that you can snag one of those coveted outdoor tables.

Ella's is conveniently located just a short walk from Central Park. Plan to enjoy a hearty brunch here and then take a brisk stroll through the park. Perhaps you can make it all the way to the Zoo, over on the east side of Central Park and visit the monkeys, seals and polar bears.

The Brunch menu is quite diverse and delicious. They have some extremely interesting salads including the signature Ella brunch salad. This is a very different kind of salad. The fennel, artichokes, frisee', oranges, Manchego cheese, Marcona almonds and fingerling potatoes make a nice change from the basic mixed greens or arugula that most restaurants offer.

The Wellington Benedict, with two poached eggs, grass-fed skirt steak and spinach will satisfy the heartiest of appetites. The kitchen also does very tasty baked eggs that are dressed in cream and Parmesan cheese. The feta and tomato omelet features pitted Kalamata olives.

Ella's signature brunch dish, however, is the Ronda eggs. your eggs are poached over grilled Filone. A touch of EVOO is added to the mix, along with basil and roasted red peppers and a side of Rosemary seasoned home fries.
Your taste buds will also get a kick out of the Guacamole Tartare, with Hass avocados, goat cheese, scallions and black sesame seeds.

A menu this strong needs an equally compelling drink list to keep up with it. The cocktails here certainly do not play second fiddle to the food in any way, shape or form.

Created by noted mixologist Jorge Paz, Ella's cocktail menu brings you a few traditional favorites together with some unique and quirky mixes and blends. Come on and try something different. being adventurous can be its' own reward.

You'll agree that taking a walk on the wild side has its' benefits when you taste Mannella's Mojito, made with muddled,mint-infused rum, lime juice and Azucar over crushed ice.

The Delirio is a cocktail that not only looks great but, also has flavor and refreshment factors that are right on point. You won't find jalapeno juice in many cocktails anywhere in Manhattan. When that spicy nectar is blended with tequila, fresh cucumber juice and maraschino liqueur it's definitely lights out time!

Gin, muddled avocados, lime juice and Angostura bitters bring life to the Camille, a cocktail that is equally popular at brunch or dinner.

For $17, you can add their bottomless brunch deal to your morning (or afternoon meal). Beverage choices include Cava, Mimosas, Bellinis or Bloody Marys.

Location and Hours

249 Columbus Avenue
New York, NY 10023
(212) 579-9929
www.ellakitchenbar.com

Hours

Monday to Thursday 11 AM to 11 PM
Friday 11 AM to 12 AM
Saturday 9 AM to 12 AM
Sunday 9 AM to 10 PM

Cafe Luxembourg - NYC

With a colorful Parisian bistro ambiance, Cafe Luxembourg has, since 1983, become a go-to brunch spot for neighborhood locals, celebrities and French tourists who long for an authentic taste of home.

The sleek and stylish decor definitely has that wow factor that New Yorkers are always looking for. The romantic, atmospheric lighting is courtesy of Jean Perzel. White linens cover the tables and you will enjoy your meal while sitting on comfortable and snazzy French cafe chairs.

One section of the main dining room is lined with long red leather banquette seating while the other side has cozy booths that are ideal for an intimate brunch for two. Vases of flowers are strategically placed around the room, which is both inviting and very warm.

Even the servers get into the act, donning the traditional black and white uniforms with long white bistro-style aprons, You'll have to look out the window to make sure that you are still on Manhattan's upper west side and have not, somehow, been magically transported to France.

Cafe Luxembourg is the kind of place that happy and satisfied customers recommend to their friends, family and business associates. that says a great deal, right there. Open for longer than many of their patrons have been alive, Cafe Luxembourg has stood the test of time.
CafeLuxemburg
In addition to the usual suspects such as Mimosas and Screwdrivers, you can sample a few really interesting libations when you brunch here.
The bar's unique take on your standard Bloody Mary is called The Maria Peligrosa. You will sip a blend of premium tequila, lime juice, Bloody Mary mix and Tabasco through a bacon-salted rim. Now, if that's not a cocktail to look forward to, we don't know what is!

The barkeep's intriguing take on a Bellini is also eminently sip-worthy. Blackberry and Peach juice, blood orange and Apple juice along with a fig are added to some Prosecco, which always hits the spot.

The brunch menu is a features American egg and omelet classics together with some delicious French food like their true to form Croque Monsieur. But then, you didn't come here to have a dish of plain old Eggs Benedict, did you?

The all natural steak tartare comes with toast points and frisee. A very original and tasty dish is the chef's signature brunch bowl, which consists of steamed broccoli rabe, watercress, sweet potatoes, Puffed Farro, a poached egg, quinoa, lemon oil and soy sauce.

Their French Toast and French onion soup are authentic and perfectly portioned. The soup is cheesy, without being overpowering. All of the seasonings and flavors inherent in this well-loved traditional soup come together perfectly.

Cafe Luxembourg celebrates the more laid-back Gallic way of life and has a good time while doing so. Maybe that's why the servers here are always smiling and actually seem to enjoy working here. Your satisfaction is their pleasure.

Location and Hours

200 West 70th Street
New York, NY 10023
(212) 873-7411
www.cafeluxembourg.com

Hours

Monday and Tuesday 8 AM to 10 PM
Wednesday to Friday 8 AM to 11 PM
Saturday 9 AM to 11 PM
Sunday 9 AM to 10 PM

Sarabeth's - NYC

From the luxurious environs of Central Park South and trendy Tribeca to Park Avenue South and the Upper East Side, there is a Sarabeth's close to home in your neighborhood.

But the very first Sarabeth's, the one that started all the buzz, can be found on Manhattan's Upper West Side. Going strong for nearly thirty years, Sarabeth's has become a home away from home for those who are seeking a great meal together with friendly, sincere service.
A family favorite, Sarabeth's is also quite popular with young couples who want to enjoy some quality alone time for brunch, as well as a break from cooking in their apartment.

Sarabeth's West Side location is within walking distance of so many cultural attractions such as the American Museum of Natural History, The Children's Museum of Manhattan, Riverside Park and the Beacon Theater.

Sarabeth's brunch is legendary and for very good reason. They dare to do things with a little personality here. You are not just presented with a menu of old familiar brunch dishes.

The fruity beginnings section of their menu offers you a very special berry bowl consisting of heaps of blackberries, blueberries and raspberries. You can also start your day off right with a tall glass of their Four Flowers juice, a refreshing blend of Pomegranate, orange, pineapple and banana juice.

From the griddle, you can warm up your morning with fat and fluffy banana and strawberry stuffed French Toast or a potato waffle with chicken and apple sausage, chives, sour cream and chunky apple butter.

For the entire table, order a basket of the pastry chef's delicious muffins and home-made preserves. You'll be oh so glad that you did. Croissants and scones are also available.

The menu states that their egg and omelet dishes are extraordinary and we have no reason to doubt the superlatives. Who are we to argue with a vegetable frittata that includes both Gruyere' cheese and asparagus?
The green and white scrambled eggs with cream cheese and scallions is also quite a treat. Instead of the usual American cheese, Sarabeth's garden Omelet gives you quality Vermont cheddar which is blended in with broccoli, corn, sun-dried tomatoes and carrots.

As far as liquid sustenance goes, the bar has come up with some nice libations.Their twist on the Bellini is to mix peach Schnapps with sparkling wine and add mango nectar for a bit of a different taste. Sarabeth's Bloody Mary is livened up considerably by a garnish of house-pickled vegetables.

An all-time favorite here is the Plum and Thyme Prosecco Smash. This elixir of the Gods consists of Ruffino Prosecco, cherry plum jam, lemon juice, thyme and simple syrup.
St. Germaine, Gin and fresh cranberry juice are the key ingredients of the Sweet Symphony cocktail.

Re-invent your morning with Sarabeth's; brunch as you've never had it before.

Location and Hours

423 Amsterdam Avenue
New York, NY 10024
(212) 496-6280
www.sarabethsrestaurants.com

Hours

Monday to Sunday 8 AM to 10 PM

Arte Cafe - NYC

This charming restaurant is all about traditional Italian cooking presented with contemporary flair. They also do a very elegant brunch.


Located inside of a quaint brownstone on a relatively sedate residential street, Arte Cafe has a romantic skylight dining room. There is no better setting in which to treat your family to brunch or dinner. Arte Cafe has been acclaimed as one of the best date night spots in the city.

Their spacious outdoor patio is situated just a few steps down from the sidewalk. Planters filled with shrubbery and an ornate fence seclude this intimate dining area from the street. One enters the restaurant through the patio.
A long red awning runs from the sidewalk to the Cafe's entrance. When you dine here, you feel as though you are an honored guest in the home of a long-time friend. In fact, many of the dishes are served family style, as they do in Italy.

Popular Brunch drinks such as the Bellini, Screwdriver, Mimosa and a very fruity Sangria are available by the glass or carafe. You can also score a bottle of California Champagne for only $22!
ArteCafe
You can get your pancake fix on several different and delicious ways, from chocolate chip to a stack of flapjacks laden with mixed berries and fresh made whipped cream. Belgian waffles and a scrumptious Vanilla Brioche with apple caramel sauce are other brunch highlights.

One Italian style brunch dish that you won't find at many other West Side restaurants is their delectable Zucchini Fritte accompanied by a slightly spicy tomato sauce. The chef also turns out a tasty Mushroom Frittata with caramelized shallots and bacon.

They also have a tempting selection of brunch Paninis which come with Italian home fries. One of their most popular Paninis is the chicken breast Parmigiana. The Caprese, with Mozzarella, tomatoes, EVOO and basil pesto is also wildly popular with the Upper West Side brunch crowd.

There are several "Benedict" dishes to choose from including classic, salmon or crab. But the Avocado Benedict is, surely, one for the books.Roasted red peppers, cilantro and a lime Hollandaise transform a couple of ordinary poached eggs (perfectly cooked though they may be), into something very special.

The chef has thoughtfully included a couple of their dinner pasta delights onto his brunch menu. The Rigatoni alla Siciliana comes with a mound of eggplant. Another standout pasta is the Gnocchi with toasted Pistachios in a Gorgonzola cheese sauce.

Hey, who says that you can't have it all, at least when you're doing brunch at Arte Cafe.

Location and Hours

106 West 73rd Street
New York, NY 10023
(212) 501-7014
www.artecafenyc.com

Hours

Monday to Friday 12 PM to 11 PM
Saturday 11 AM to 12 AM
Sunday 11 AM to 11 PM

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