It’s always a good time to meet up for brunch. From dim sum to Dutch babies, here are the essential places to make plans with friends, catch up over coffee and cocktails, and get down with some serious daytime dishes.Read More
19 Essential Brunch Spots in Philly
For that magical meal between breakfast and lunch, these are Philly’s most beloved go-tos
1. The Landing Kitchen
Nick Elmi’s all-day cafe in Bala Cynwyd is the ideal destination for brunch with a view. The Landing Kitchen outsources their pastries to formidable bakeries like Au Fournil and Crust and their daytime offerings include everything from an array of toasts to seared pork belly sandwiches with Cooper sharp cheese.
In Fishtown, chic Lebanese destination Suraya wows breakfast crowds with its menu of pastries, egg dishes, and man’oushe (flatbread) with za’atar and labne. Don’t leave without getting something sweet, like an olive oil cake with turmeric and apricot.
3. Front Street Cafe
Fishtown’s go-to brunch spot keeps things fresh with a roster of rotating specials that range from roasted pepper and salmon deviled eggs to fried rice and Honduran chicken with cabbage salad and fried plantains. Those looking to keep their brunch more traditional will appreciate classics like eggs benedict and a house-cured gravlax platter.
4. Café La Maude
This little Northern Liberties cafe marries French and Lebanese cuisines, making for some very real brunch magic seven days a week. Fava hummus with eggs and za’atar pita and a berry-topped pain perdu are just two examples of Cafe La Maude’s beautiful brunch synergy.
5. Honey's Sit 'n Eat
Taking influences from various regions' morning eats, like country-fried steak and eggs, bagels and lox, and cheesy enfrijoladas, Honey’s brunch-time appeal can be found at North 4th Street in Northern Liberties — there’s occasionally a line so expect a bit of a wait.
6. Cafe Lift
All day, every day brunch might not be a mind-blowing concept these days, but the folks at Callowhill’s Cafe Lift keep their offerings fresh with a menu that goes beyond pancakes. Delicate Italian crepes come sweet with bananas and Nutella and a Polish Benedict is topped with kraut and kielbasa.
7. Nom Wah Philadelphia
New York import Nom Wah has been in the dim sum game for over 100 years. While the Philadelphia outpost might not have a full century under its belt, the kitchen here is adept at turning out perfectly folded dumplings, tender rice rolls and savory stuffed and steamed peppers. The intimate Chinatown space doesn’t allow for classic cart service, instead guests check off their desired dishes on paper menus. Nom Wah’s tea program is serious business and Tsingtao are always on offer for those who prefer a brunchtime beer.
8. Ocean Harbor
Never doubt the power of dim sum to keep you happy all day on a Saturday. At Ocean Harbor, all the traditional dim sum dishes are on offer, from turnip cakes to dumplings. Just don’t let your appetite get the better of you — those carts full of delicious, enticing dishes make it easy to fill up fast.
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9. Dutch Eating Place
Getting a stool at this tiny Reading Terminal Market luncheonette might require a bit of patience, but the homey breakfast fare the Amish eatery serves is worth it. Apple dumplings with cream and the scrapple are must-trys.
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10. K'Far Cafe
Borekas, bagels and babka are only the beginning of the brunch options at Mike Solomonov and Steve Cook’s daytime destination. The multifaceted Middle Eastern menu is full of topped toasts on Yemenite kubaneh bread, bright salads, and some lovely laminated pastries.
11. The Love.
Starr Restaurants leave the city with no shortage of brunch options but The Love masters the weekend meal. The menu keeps things fresh with an appealing array of starters like hush puppies with salted honey butter followed by mains that tread the line between breakfast and lunch — think fried egg topped turkey avocado melts and bowls of gulf shrimp and grits. Don’t sleep on brunch cocktails at The Love, either.
12. High Street Philly
While brunch is not technically on the menu at High Street, the breakfast and lunch options are undoubtedly worthy daytime options, from early morning until afternoon. An array of breakfast sandwiches are served on High Street’s heavenly bread, and lunch sandwiches, salads, and soups are all hits. Pick up some of High Street’s perfect baked goods on the way out.
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13. Via Locusta
Those looking for a luxe brunch will be more than pleased with the offerings at Michael Schulson’s Rittenhouse outpost. Kick off the meal with a couple of spritzes and dig into focaccia topped with whipped lardo or burrata, or perhaps some daytime caviar service followed by a BLT panino.
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14. Booker's Restaurant & Bar
Craving grits? Get them with shrimp or catfish and sunny side up eggs at Booker’s in West Philly’s Cedar Park neighborhood. Other standouts on the modern Southern brunch menu at Saba Tedla’s inviting restaurant, which has a full bar, include chicken and waffles, a salmon burger, and, for a veggie option, beet hummus with pita.
Breakfast fare with a Northern European lean is what’s on offer at Winkel in Washington Square West from Joncarl Lachman of Noord. Belgain waffles here come sweet with seasonal fruit, or savory with a one two punch of fried chicken and scrapple gravy.
16. The Breakfast Den
At the corner of 15th and South, The Breakfast Den is serving a menu that brings together the city’s shared passion for both Vietnamese cuisine and brunch. The result is a unique take on weekend eats that runs the gamut from Vietnamese pulled pork hash to egg, bacon, and sausage filled banh mi, and spring-roll-topped breakfast bowls with crispy tofu and fresh herbs.
17. Alma del Mar
This sunny BYO in the Italian Market offers a menu of Mexican accented brunch fare like tres leches pain perdu and huevos rancheros and a south of the border tofu scramble. True to its name — Spanish for soul of the sea — Alma del Mar’s menu skews seafood heavy with shrimp, crab or lobster topped Benedicts and grits finished with fish and scallops.
18. Phở 75
No french toast or mimosas to be found at this Vietnamese stalwart but come early for generous bowls of pho that are sure to bring anyone back to life, even after a particularly late night. Unlike some of the more compact brunch spots in the city, waiting lists aren’t a thing at this Washington Avenue pho spot. As far as drinks go, an iced coffee with a generous layer of sweetened condensed milk or salted lemonade are solid choices for those in the market for a zero ABV brunch option.
19. La Llorona Cantina
How much does La Llorona love brunch? A whole lot. La Llorona’s pastry baskets, micheladas, and bottomless mimosas are all excellent, plus hangover helping fare like ceviches and aguachiles, and huevos a la casa with beans, poblano peppers, and Chihuahua cheese are worth it.
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