This Was Soooo Good

Butterscotch Creme Brulee with Chocolate Dust from The Lion

The Lion: 62 W. 9th St, Between 5th & 6th Avenues.

This was definitely one of my favorite brunch desserts ever because it was so out of the ordinary, and absolutely delicious. Today is an appropriate day to share thoughts on The Lion because my team and I have noticed that GILT City has been repeatedly selling  a “deal” for their brunch over the last few weeks. While we are usually not into many of the “deal” promotions around town, we like this one and find The Lion in Greenwich Village to be a very legit brunch spot.

Events Calendar

 In case you haven’t seen it, we post BC’s Signature Brunch events in our official “Brunchie Events” calendar on the homepage. In addition to the events we host, like the Signature Orange Party, Buns-n-Biscuits, and others, we also post numerous brunch happenings hosted by other organizations. This can range from Brunch Launches, Brunch Parties, Supper Clubs, Drag Brunches, and more, all with the goal of keeping you in the know of great get togethers and fun happenings on the weekends.

Today we added some new and notable upcoming events that might be of interest, (and eventually when we get our newsletter up and running we’ll tell you that way as well…).

Salvation Taco Launches Brunch: New restaurant Salvation Taco launches their brunch service this weekend. They’ve got quite an eclectic menu…everything from steak & egg burritos (yum, this Californian loves that), to crispy pig ears…? Yes, really. You’ll have to tell me how that is. Then again, I will try anything once. (Like that time I tried frog legs. Loved them!)

All You can Eat Desserts: We’ve had this on the calendar for a while. Benoit is a more upscale, French brunch spot you’d take a grandparent, a discerning uncle who lives in a château in Switerland, or a significant other you need to break up with – note: the noise level – that person will certainly hear “breakup,” not “make-up.” Benoit serves Unlimited Desserts for $16 on Sundays. Not a bad deal. Stuff grandma’s face so she can stop telling you to get married, please the uncle who keeps telling you to get a real job, and suck on the pastries, creme brules and macarons if that break-up scenario really does happen.

The Brunch Supper Club: A couple friends of ours run a supper club in Brooklyn and I’ve been to their dinners. This Sunday is their first brunch event, named “Brunch Communion.” Actually that’s pretty funny. It’s a play on the fact that many say “brunch is the new religion.” I’ve enjoyed myself at their dinners, have met new people and eaten good, fresh food. I suspect their brunch will be fun as well. Casual, tasty, easy to relax at, and an overall good time.

The Yacht Week Brunch Party: A wild raucous affair by a group of Brits who are promoting their company, Yacht Week, where a hundred or so people can join a yacht that travels to the Caribbean, Greece or Croatia for a week in the Spring/Summer. The brunches invite people to partake in a “Nautical Theme.”

Vegan Mexican Brunch Culinary Demonstration: Whole Foods is way ahead of the game announcing this event which is happening in April. It’s an interesting concept, and props to them for having planned so far ahead.

And that’s a round up of the recents events we posted. No go forth, and enjoy.

Happy weekend everyone.

Brunch on Presidents’ Day

Tomorrow, Monday, February 18th is a national holiday, President’s Day. And lucky for us New Yorkers, some NYC restaurants treat Monday holidays just like Saturdays and Sundays, and therefore like brunch days.

Our Website tags all the brunch spots that are usually open for holiday brunches and you can always search “Holiday Brunch” on the BrunchCritic homepage to get this long list. For a more curated list of where to go tomorrow, check out our Guide to 8 Spots for President’s Day Brunching here:

 

D-I-Y Bloody Mary Bars are soooo 2012

Someone has put their thinking cap on. Unlimited drinks – been there. Drinks included – done that. Do-It-Yourself Bloody Mary bars….that may just be sooo 2012. But Sotto13 is up to something different.

This Greenwich Village brunch newcomer launches their D-I-Y Prosecco bar Saturday, February 16th. As their PR team says, you can:

  • become your own mixologist with a bottle of prosecco and a tray of five mixers, including signature fresh juices, liqueurs and toss-ins like candied ginger, fresh berries and more. (priced from $55 per DIY tray).

Now this is cool. Something different. 

We can’t vouch for their food yet, but the prospect of the fun that can be had around this Prosecco tray sure sounds enticing. The closest thing I can think of similar to this is the Sangria bar at Calle Ocho. But that is way in the UWS. Downtown needs there own. Maybe this is just the fix, just the new thing we need.

We look forward to providing a full update, and hope to hear your feedback if you beat us to it.

Cheers brunchies!

Weekend Brunch – Park Avenue Winter, Miss Lilly’s, Shanghai Cafe

First off, I want to apologize for getting this post up so late on a Sunday (12:30 pm). To be   helpful to our community, it probably doesn’t help to get brunch recos and updates late on a Sunday morning. When we started this blog two weeks ago, we aimed to post on Fridays, and Sunday early mornings. We are a bit scrappy here in the beginning, but bear with us and I’m sure we’ll get it together.

What we are up to this weekend: So far, brunch-time has been awesome. Here’s how we are rolling after Friday night’s blizzard, as we now walk under a crystal clear, sun filled sky.

1.) We hit up Park Avenue Winter yesterday, and couldn’t have been more satisfied.
I’m so excited to post a formal review of it.

I would definitely declare it as one of The Best Brunches in the Upper East side. That’s a big statement for us. But hands down, we stand behind it every step of the way.

2.) Off to Miss Lilly’s in a few minutes to try out their Jamaican brunch all the NY centric magazines keep raving about. We’ll let you know how it is.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

3.) And, in honor of Chinese New Year (the year of the Snake) we are getting treated by our friend who highly recommends Dim Sum at Shanghai Cafe (Mott & Mulberry Streets). Totally fired up for dumplings and a spirited celebration. And yes, we are doubling up on Brunch today. Usually we don’t do that because it takes away from the brunch experience and mashes together two places. But these are two pretty different types of brunches – one will be more breakfasty, the other more lunchie.

 

 

 

Cozy Winter Brunch Spots in Manhattan and Brooklyn

We’ve got a winter storm headed our way. I’ve heard conflicting reports; one of them said we were getting 30 inches of snow, another said we were getting 3.  The most recent report a few hours ago was 8-12 inches by tomorrow morning.

For one thing, I’m pretty fired up. It’s been a weak winter in terms of fun, white snow. I can’t complain about the unusually high temperatures we have had, (remember I’m

originally from Southern California), but snow is always welcome, to me anyways. Something about blizzards and snowy days just makes the City seem so much calmer and quieter.

Thus said, it’s a perfect time to release our Cozy Winter Brunch Spots List. We’ve made a few additions to last year’s list. Hopefully the brick walls, nooks, crannies, and fireplaces are welcomed by you. And if you are bundling up inside this weekend, this list still should be helpful on cold, non-storm, weekends.

If you think we left anything off the list, or want to add, let us know! Hit us up on Twitter, leave a comment below, post on Facebook or email me at andrea@brunchcritic.com.

Cozy Winter Brunch Spots

Grand Central’s 100 years and brunch nearby.

Grand Central Station turned 100 years old this weekend. And, we receive a lot of questions about what brunch spots are nearby. While the immediate area around Grand Central is totally lacking in great restaurants and brunch, I am a fan of The Shop at the Andaz Hotel and it’s just a few blocks away. If you are

riding solo, the cafe area in the front is casual and easy going. Not a bad spot to pull up a stool and read the morning Times. And of course for a group, the main area will suit you well. Since The Shop is part of the Andaz Hotel, you’re looking at hotel prices. But it’s the price you pay for finding a legit brunch spot in a funny party of midtown. Click here for a map and other details about The Shop.

And in honor of Grand Central’s centennial, here are a few fun facts about it:

  • Grand Central’s doors were opened on midnight, February 2, 1913.
  • Adjusted for inflation in today’s terms, the station cost $2 billion to create.
  • 750,000 visitors pass through the Grand Central daily.
  • 19,000 items are found in the lost & found each year.

For more random fun, check out the Daily Beast’s list of 100 facts about Grand Central. It’s actually kinda cool:  DailyBeast 100 

Brunchies™, not foodies.

I’m a brunchie™, not a foodie. This is a big part of my philosophy as I’ve gone about building out the site and our brand, and something I communicate to people all the time. For many of them, it registers. Brunch is a unique meal. Some say “it’s breakfast without the alarm clock,” others say “it’s the best meal of the week,” and some classify is as “the best made-up meal of the week.” Plain and simple, it can be where you talk about what you did last night, or who you…(rhymes with “id”).  Moving on…  I’m sure there are also other descriptions I’m leaving out too. (BTW if you classify it in a fun or even critical way, reply and let us know in the comments!

BC’s official magnets.

I’ll piggy back on one of the above but extend mine to, “brunch is breakfast with out the alarm clock, and good people.”  The thing is, brunch, especially in New York City, has a totally different feeling than dinner.  It’s more relaxed, it’s often more fun, and it’s one of the few times in NYC you can get away with a tremendously dressed-down look. Sometimes you planned it that way, and other

Dania rocking the official Brunchie™ shirt. I had to bring it all the way out to California for her.

times you just couldn’t get it together, per your shenanigans the night before.

Foodie? Nah:                        Obviously I’m a brunchie, but I dislike the word “foodie”. I think it’s just lame. I think it’s safe to say we all like good food and we all won’t turn down great food. Some know more about exotic ingredients and the overused “farm-to-table” term for veggies and meats, but brunch

Michelle having fun with the signature magnet. She’s a scorpio, lives in Midtown, and is a TV producer for CNBC.

likers and lovers see something different.

Regarding The Haters:         There are people who hate brunch here.  I don’t mind. I get it. It’s not your thing. (Hate BTW is a strong word, and it’s amazing how people will use it to describe brunch. Seriously? You must care a lot if you are so intent on declaring you “hate” it. Anyways, I digress).

This is Tom. He immediately put on the Signature shirt when he received it at our launch party. We’re glad he kept his jacket on. “Stay classy San Diego.”

It’s about People:                  Brunch is about the people around the table with you. It’s about meeting old friends, current friends, and new friends. It’s about seeing a restaurant in the daylight and viewing the atmosphere that the restaurant paid design and architecture firms an arm and a leg to create. It’s about the food, but it’s really an experience. Dinner can be just about the food. Not brunch. There are some food lovers who are brunchies, and some food lovers who are not. It’s the overall experience brunchies care about. And that’s why we coined

Dania rocking the shirt. She’s a great model. Glad you like it and thanks for sporting it loud and proud my dear!

the term. I think brunch is also such a big deal in New York, “a religion, a sport,” because we need it. Dinners can be stressful and more about business or networking.  And often week nights are jammed packed with events, and then having to find something to eat.  We need the sleeping in, we need the casual clothing, and we need the easy socializing. Oviously we need the Bloody Mary (or 3).

Our stuff – Signature Magnets & Shirts:                                           And with that said, it wouldn’t be right to have a brunch brand and not have some schwag. It wasn’t crap we wanted to create with our names on it. And I hope you don’t think it’s crap. If I hand you our signature magnet, and you don’t want it, just give it back. It’ll save me some money to be honest. We’re a scrappy start-up. Trust me every little bit helps. We just wanted to communicate who we are and match people’s enthusiasm. The magnets pictured above are incredibly popular. I thought people might like them. Actually they love them. It’s awesome. They are on fridges at homes, at offices, and people tell me they are starting to see them in random places around the city. I’m getting a kick out of that.

Stickers? That’s a no-no: I don’t believe in marketing stickers. I think they are terrible. They stick and they are difficult to scrape off. I find them a version of graffiti when people put them in the most inapropriate places. I don’t want your half scraped sticker on my public light pole, and I don’t want it in fine dining bathrooms or trashing up subways. If you are trying to communicate something, f-ing communicate it instead of adding junk around my city. Magnets are easy to remove. You just remove it.

I like our signature brunchie™ shirts as well. Drop me a line if you want one (andrea@brunchcritic.com) and we will happily get it to you fast. I only believe in American Apparel and Bella. They are the most comfy and you deserve the best. And the magnet – we’ll there’s a good chance you’ve already seen it. I don’t give everyone I meet a business card, but they definitely get a magnet. If you don’t have one yet, drop me a line (again, it’s andrea@brunchcritic.com) and I’ll get you one in a jiffy. You can have as many as you want.

Hope your weekend is brunchtastic. Yeah, I know that is cheesy, but it is fitting. Don’t deny it. You know it.

-Andrea