Go out for brunch on any Saturday morning and you’re sure to see crowds of girls enjoying Prosecco and fluffy white eggs. No surprise: brunch is prime bonding time. But where are all the boys? Brunch is just about the best way you can spend your morning at the weekend but so many places focus on getting the menu right for avo and egg lovers, they end up excluding the those who have had enough avocado to last them a lifetime. Here are our favourite brunches, where meat is the order of the day instead of just bubbles and baked eggs.
Gentlemanly Breakfast for Bon Vivants
Nurse your hangover in style at Balans Soho Society, the type of restaurant-bar that makes eating out feel classy again, no matter how crusty you feel. The galmorous Jazz Age decor is backed up by the menu, which is big on extravagance. The High Society Eggs Benedict adds lobster and avocado to the traditional brunch dish, and their interpretation of old favourite kedgeree is absolutely smashing. Wash it all down with The Morning After cocktail, including a dash of absinthe and ‘Balans House Recovery Syrup’, for the perfect start to the weekend.
Jamaican Restaurant with Attitude
Eggs Benedict is nice and everything, but sometimes you want a breakfast with a bit more bite. Rum Kitchen, a Caribbean jerk house with some serious spice going on, have a brunch menu for those who want more kick. Start with some Coca Cola curred gamon and sweet potato fries topped with a fried egg or their take on the Full English… the Full Jamaican – two eggs any style, two sausages, BBQ pulled pork, spicy beans and roasted tomato – that should sort any hangover right out.
The last word in barbecue, Bodean’s have had Londoners swooning at their properly-smoked meat for a while now. But they’ve only just started offering brunch, bringing the best bits of barbecue to breakfast time. Their ‘Just the Brunch’ adds burnt ends and Texas sausage to your usual mix of poached eggs and bacon. Plus, as well as bottomless Prosecco, you can fill your cup with endless Kansas-style Bloody Mary, with pickled okra and horseradish. Boy-friendly? You bet.
Traditional Breakfast-Brunch Done Right
Ok, so this is technically a breakfast, but it’s a brunch in all but name. Start with an ‘Anti-Fogmatic’ – a hair-of-the-dog hangover-busting cocktail. from a Bloody Mary No.7 to a ‘Corpse Reviver’ – and then move on to some of Hawksmoor’s big hitters. If you don’t mind sharing, go for the breakfast for two: smoked bacon chops, meaty sausages, slabs of black pudding, grilled bone marrow, trotter baked beans, fried eggs, HP gravy, and as much toast as you can butter. Guaranteed to satisfy even the blokiest boy.
Traditional British Cafe with a Modern Menu
Brunch might be a new trend, but Polo Bar have been serving up brekkie to Londoners since the ’50s. As well as some big-hitting fry ups, including the Polo Special at just £7, there are a couple of traditional dishes too – with a few tweaks, of course. Try the Bubble & Bacon, or Eggs Benedict with chorizo instead of ham. Or if traditional’s not doing it for you, go all American instead with some of Polo’s award winning pancakes.
Bowling Alley with a Secret Weapon Menu
Sure, ‘bowling alley’ isn’t the first thing that springs to mind when you’re thinking about brunch. But All Star Lanes isn’t your typical bowling alley. Not only do they offer a proper brunch menu, from eggs and sausages to American pancakes, but they’re also offering bottomless craft beer. That’s right, for two hours on Sunday you can drink as much Brooklyn Lager or Beavertown as you like. And what better after a couple of pints than a spot of bowling?
Big Flavours from the Deep South
Big Easy is usually a crowd-pleaser. Authentic American barbecue with regional variation, from Texas-style to Tennessee-style, served in a proper blues bar with great live music. At the weekend, Big Easy offer an unlimited boozy brunch for £29.50. Choose between the Big Pig Gig featuring North Carolina Chopped Pork, Pit-Smoked Chicken & St Louis Pork Ribs, or the Lobster Fest, with Lobster Roll or Lobster Mac ‘n’ Cheese. And, of course, it includes two hours of bottomless Big Easy Brew punch, Prosecco or even house wine. That’s why they call it the ‘Big’ Easy.