Discover the Ultimate Brunch Haven: 13 Amazing Brunch Spots on the Upper West Side

Hello, fellow foodies, and welcome to the next chapter of our NYC brunch journey! Today’s fun brings us to the Upper West Side, a neighborhood where the late morning meal is nothing short of a sacred ritual. This area is famed for crowd-pleasers such as stacks of fluffy french toast and hearty omelettes, often served in mouthwatering large portions that promise satisfaction for you and your friends.

But don’t forget; great restaurants extend beyond these streets! So, be sure to check out my comprehensive “Best Brunch Spots in NYC” guide to discover every delight the Big Apple has to offer. For now, though, we’re exploring the magic of Upper West Side brunch. Are you ready to tantalize your taste buds? Let’s jump in!

My Favorite Spots for the Best Brunch on the Upper West Side

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    Jacob's Pickles

    American Restaurant in Upper West Side
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    Prepare yourself for an Upper West Side Sunday brunch extravaganza at Jacob’s Pickles! This casual joint serves some of the best southern comfort food in the neighborhood, with fried chicken and waffles being one of the crowd favorites. Trust me; not only is their fried chicken a must-try, it’s even better paired with their tasty mac & cheese.

    But a meal here is an event, so don’t be surprised if it’s packed to the rafters every weekend. In other words, advance reservations are your best friend. Want another quick tip? Go for one of their 12 biscuit breakfast sandwiches and top it off with a pickled vegetable of your choice. Either way, Jacob’s Pickles is my go-to recommendation for friends visiting from out of town because a brunch here is like a Sunday Upper West Side tradition.

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    Daily Provisions

    Café in Upper West Side
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    The next stop on our NYC brunch tour is Daily Provisions, a laid-back UWS brunch restaurant that serves everyone’s favorite mid-day food all day! This charming bakery was opened by Danny Meyer, who is the same genius behind Shake Shack. So, while you may have never heard of this restaurant, you surely know that! 

    Daily Provisions is the perfect place to grab food on the Upper West Side, especially when you’re on the go. Don’t miss out on the BEC (bacon, egg, and cheese) or the smoked salmon, everything croissant, because these are the stars of the show! But if you’re looking for something lighter, the avocado toast is also a sure bet. The bottom line here is that when I want a relaxed Saturday morning brunch on the Upper West Side, Daily Provisions is my pick.

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    Cafe Luxembourg

    French Restaurant in Upper West Side
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    When it comes to the best brunch on the Upper West Side, Cafe Luxembourg is a cherished institution. Tucked near the Lincoln Center, this French-American bistro serves a great brunch every weekend from 10 am until 3:30 pm. When eating here, I’m always torn between the Eggs Benedict and a classic omelette since both are phenomenal. 

    Yet, regardless of what you order, with its charming ambiance, it’s easy to imagine being in a classic romantic movie scene while enjoying brunch here. If you’re a fan of French Onion Soup, Yellowfin Tuna Burger, or eggs, you’ve found your new favorite spot. In fact, you’ll love Cafe Luxembourg so much; you might even start recommending it to all your guests as the best Upper West Side brunch!

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    Thyme & Tonic

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    Imagine spending your Sunday morning nestled among wooden booths, relishing a vegan brunch in the heart of the Upper West Side – sounds perfect, doesn’t it? Thyme & Tonic, situated conveniently near Theodore Roosevelt Park and the American Museum of Natural History on Columbus Ave, offers exactly this experience. 

    This gem is the pinnacle of gluten-free, plant-forward cuisine, and is open for brunch from 10 am until 3:30 pm. Here, you can explore their eclectic menu, brilliantly influenced by global cuisine and featuring innovative tofu and Impossible Meat dishes. And whatever you do, don’t miss out on the cocktails! In particular, their Bloody Mary is a game-changer. For a wholesome start, I would recommend the ‘Rise & Shine’ – served with their scrambled eggs and Impossible mushroom sausage will leave you craving for more.

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    Maison Pickle

    American Restaurant in Upper West Side
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    For our next spot, allow me to introduce you to a classy little joint that revolutionizes the brunch experience on the Upper West Side – Maison Pickle. Known for their sumptuous French Dip and tantalizing cocktails, this restaurant resides on Broadway, just a few blocks from the Hudson River. 

    At Maison Pickle, they offer brunch on weekdays from 11 am until 4 pm and weekends from 9 am to 4 pm. Expect everything from giant pull-apart frosted cinnamon buns to french toast topped with hot honey-fried chicken. And believe me when I say that the ‘Hot Honey Chicken n French Toast’ with a signature cocktail will elevate your meal to a whole new level!

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    Absolute Bagels

    Café in Upper West Side
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    If you find yourself near the Nicholas Roerich Museum, then head on over to 2788 Broadway. Situated here is a quaint spot called Absolute Bagels which is a must-visit if you’re a bagel enthusiast. This laid-back spot keeps it simple yet delectable, serving their hand-rolled, housemade bagels all day, every day.

    If you want my honest opinion, the Scallion Tofutti on their perfect plain bagel is one of my favorite things. Enjoy this treat, or any of their other delicious offerings, along with a refreshing Thai iced tea for the ultimate casual dining experience. Ultimately, if you’re in the mood for an unpretentious and utterly delicious brunch, then work up an appetite and head over to this Central Park West location.

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    The Smith

    American Restaurant in Upper West Side
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    For all the food lovers out there who value the comforting embrace of classic American fare, The Smith is your safe haven. This hotspot, which sprouted its roots in the East Village in 2007, has since spread its reach to six locations, including our beloved spot on Broadway, right opposite the Lincoln Center. 

    The Smith serves brunch until 4 pm on weekends and dishes out all your traditional favorites. Omelettes, lox, french toast, you name it, they’ve got it. But don’t let the constant crowd deter you. Snag a reservation and, if you’re lucky, an outdoor table for some quality people-watching. Personal recommendations? Go for a refreshing Martini or Spritz and pair it with the Ranchero Scramble or the Skillet Baked French Toast. Or for something more hearty, the bone-in Ribeye with eggs your way will not disappoint either.

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    Sarabeth's Upper West Side

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    Amidst the hustle and bustle of Amsterdam Ave, Sarabeth’s humble facade can be easily overlooked. Yet, this petite storefront serves some of the best brunch food in the Upper West Side and has done so since 1983. What I love most about this restaurant is that it brings a certain class to your brunch. 

    Picture expertly poached eggs on a fluffy corn muffin partnered with zesty greens. Yes, I’m talking about their smoked salmon benedict! But it doesn’t stop there! Sarabeth’s morphed from a tiny bakery-kitchen selling preserves and baked goods to one of the best brunch restaurants adored by locals and visitors alike. 

    For a taste of their legacy, the Fat & Fluffy French Toast with strawberries or the Lemon & Ricotta Pancakes with blackberries are my top picks. And their delicious Eggs and Lox never miss the mark either. So, no matter what you eat, don’t miss this unassuming spot! 

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    The Consulate

    French Restaurant in Upper West Side
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    Now, for another of my favorites: The Consulate! This restaurant captures the essence of a European brasserie with the cool edge of New York City. Their brunch menu offers a range of classics from granola bowls and salads to the decadent croque monsieurs and lobster bennies. If you’re a waffle enthusiast, their savory and sweet options are to die for! I’m talking options such as Nutella, Berry, Burrata, or Salmon waffles. The innovation really never stops here!

    And while it’s known for being a classy joint, the hangover burger gets a special mention because it’s a comfort food haven wrapped in sophistication. If you want to try it for yourself, stop by between 10:00 am and 3:30 pm on weekends. Just beware that once you’ve tried The Consulate, expect you’ll be back time and time again!

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    Barney Greengrass

    Café in Upper West Side
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    Ask any New Yorker where to eat, and this is a name that will come up! In the heart of the Upper West Side, nestled between the Hudson River and Central Park, you’ll find Barney Greengrass. This iconic restaurant has been serving its legendary smoked fish since 1908 and is an authentic, cash-only Jewish deli.

    On your visit, consider pairing your H&H bagel with cream cheese schmears and buttery, ocean-steeped nova. Or opt for the cloud-like scrambled eggs adorned with onions and smoked fish morsels. It’s also worth noting that you shouldn’t miss the heavenly cream cheese blintzes topped with a dollop of sour cream or fruit preserves. A word of advice, though – Barney Greengrass is beloved, so be prepared to rub shoulders with its local devotees.

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    Miriam

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    A relatively new addition to Amsterdam Avenue, Miriam’s has already made a name for itself as an extraordinary brunch spot. Drawing inspiration from Israeli food, they’re open daily until 4 pm, crafting meals that are as diverse as they are mouthwatering. Whether it’s soul-soothing Shakshukas or the unusual combination of Challah Croques and Chicken Schnitzel, there’s a dish for every palate. 

    But what really excites me is their generous a la carte menu. It’s perfect for those who love variety; perhaps you’ll pair a Jerusalem Bagel with your Challah French Toast or toss in some Potato Pancakes with your Burekas. And the best part is that the ambiance, whether you eat indoors or outdoors, is comfortable and inviting. Pro tip: The Eggs Benedict, Potato Pancake, and Israeli Breakfast are absolutely must-tries!

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    Amelie Upper West Side

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    Amelie, or as locals fondly call it, “La Petite Amélie,” offers a charming, intimate brunch experience from 12 pm to 2:45 pm, Friday through Sunday. Boasting a Michelin Bib Gourmand rating, this French-inspired haven on Amsterdam Avenue is worth a special trip. Just be warned that deciding between the classics, like the poached Eggs Norwegian and their innovative creations might pose a challenge. 

    But trust me, after a couple of mimosas, you’ll find it easier to give into temptation, be it a sumptuous charcuterie board or letting brunch transition effortlessly into lunch or dinner. If you want my recommendation – start your meal with the warm, pistachio-crusted goat cheese ball. For mains, either the fluffy brioche French toast or the juicy Amelie burger will hit the spot. And for the perfect finale, treat yourself to their heavenly vanilla crème brûlée. Bon appétit indeed!

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    The Viand Diner & Bar

    American Restaurant in Upper West Side
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    The last stop on our list of top brunch spots UWS is The Viand, a nostalgic retreat nestled in the heart of Madison Avenue. The best part about this restaurant is that it’s set amidst the backdrop of luxury designers and high-end chocolatiers, making this old-school lunch counter a charming anomaly. In other words, when you crave comfort food, this is your sanctuary.

    From fried eggs with crisp bacon to French toast piled with sausage, The Viand is all about classic diner fare, served generously and unpretentiously. They serve their brunch menu all day, so you can enjoy breakfast delights whenever you fancy. I personally recommend the Monte Cristo Panini, Rise & Shine Burger, and the heavenly pancakes with chocolate chips. In the grand landscape of brunch spots in the Upper West Side, The Viand surely stands its ground.

FAQ

What time is brunch in New York City?

This mid-morning to afternoon feast usually kicks off around 11 am and continues until about 3 pm or sometimes even 4 pm. The beauty of New York City is the versatility in restaurants’ brunch hours, as some spots even offer brunch options well into the afternoon. It’s always best to check the specific restaurant’s brunch hours to ensure you don’t miss out on that perfectly poached egg or stack of pancakes.

What is a simple brunch menu?

The beauty of a simple brunch menu lies in its elegance and versatility. Think fresh, crusty bread topped with cream cheese or scallions, fluffy scrambled eggs, lox, or crispy bacon. Or perhaps sweet options like warm, buttery French toast or a stack of blueberry pancakes. For the health-conscious, a yogurt parfait or housemade bread might fit the bill. And, of course, brunch isn’t quite complete without coffee, a refreshing mimosa, or a spicy bloody mary.

What are the characteristics of a brunch menu?

A good brunch menu is the perfect marriage of breakfast and lunch, incorporating both sweet and savory delights. It often includes classic breakfast items like eggs, bread, bacon, lox, and pancakes while also featuring hearty sandwiches and salads. Unique twists on traditional dishes, specialty coffee, and of course, brunch cocktails are also hallmarks of a great brunch experience, making it a flavorful journey from morning to afternoon.

What is the Upper West Side known for?

The Upper West Side, nestled between Central Park and the Hudson River, is known for its vibrant residential areas, stunning historic brownstones, leafy, picturesque streets, and a slew of eateries that could satisfy any foodie. With iconic landmarks such as the Lincoln Center and the American Museum of Natural History, the Upper West Side is a cherished cultural and business hub within the sprawling urban wonder that is New York City.

What are some good brunch places near Central Park South, Midtown West, or the Upper East Side of Manhattan?

When in the vicinity of Central Park South, Midtown West, or the Upper East Side, there’s an enviable range of brunch spots. Swing by Jacob’s Pickles for comfort food classics in a rustic setting – the biscuit sandwiches are truly mouthwatering. If you’re into a fancier brunch, check out Maison Pickle. Lastly, a brunch trail in NYC wouldn’t be complete without visiting Barney Greengrass, an Upper West Side institution renowned for its scrumptious smoked fish. Each of these brunch spots provides a unique brunch experience that’s quintessentially New York.

Profilbild Steffen Kneist
About the author

I'm a true New York fan! Not only have I visited the city over 25 times but also have I spent several months here at a time. On my blog I show you the best and most beautiful spots of the city, so that you have a really good time! You can also find lots of insider tips in our New York travel guide. Also check out my hotel finder for New York!

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