11 Brunch Places You Need to Try Now in Chelsea

The weekend’s never more than a few days away, and we’ve got your plans right here. Before you hit the High Line, Chelsea Piers, or the Whitney, fuel up at one of the neighborhood’s best brunch spots. Below are a cool 11 restaurants, featuring farm-to-table burgers, bottomless mimosas, French toast—and even brunch bites on a boat. 



Bottomless brunch and Mexican street food done right make weekends even better. Head to Temerario (that’s Spanish for “daredevil”) on Eighth Avenue for steak and eggs with chimichurri, their tempting beer-glazed house burger or a plate of chilaquiles. As for the bottomless drinks, it’s $20 for 90 minutes of mimosas, margs, or sangria. Whether you take that dare is up to you. 198 Eighth Ave., 212-645-2100,

The Frying Pan

Frying Pan

Docked at Chelsea Piers is one of the most popular restaurants in the city: the Lightship Frying Pan. This Jazz Age vessel from 1929, along with its accompanying floating barge,  is now a full-service restaurant collectively known as Pier 66 Maritime. The counters at Pier 66 welcome diners from May through October, as well as select days in April and October. Take in the scenic views, and come as early for brunch as you can during the ' crowded summer weekends. While you won’t find any eggs on the menu, you can enjoy a watermelon salad or fish ‘n chips at this breezy retreat on the Hudson River. Pier 66: W. 26th St., 212-989-6363,



Cookshop tops many a local brunch list, and one glance at the menu will explain why. This seasonal restaurant, with its kitchen stocked with regionally sourced ingredients, serves a range of sweet and savory delectables at brunch. That means everything from chocolate babka to chicken liver mousse on toast and a barbeque sandwich made with grass-fed beef. And that's only the beginning. While the weather is warm, Cookshop also offers great people-watching outdoor dining. 156 10th Ave., 212-924-4440,

The Donut Pub

The Donut Pub

If it’s a doughnut kind of weekend, get thee to The Donut Pub. This 1964 bakery/diner maintains much of its Jet Age New York charm while remaining au courant with items like the Croissant Donut and cold brew coffee. Order a cruller, a Birthday Cake donut, or an apple fritter with a cup of coffee, pull up a counter seat, and enjoy some of the best breakfast pastries around. (The 203 14th St. location is temporarily closed for maintenance, but there's another spot at 740 Broadway that's now open 24 hours!) 646-974-1221,

Gallow Green

Gallow Green

The hotel hosting a film noir adaptation of Shakespeare's Sleep No More  also happens to have a charming rooftop garden ideal for drinks and dining. Visit Gallow Green for al fresco brunch in warmer months and a winter feast at its cold-weather pop-up, The Lodge. Current brunch options include Eggs Florentine, avocado toast, and a Scottish-style breakfast plate. 542 W .27th St., 212-904-1880,

Empire Diner 

Wait a minute: JFK-era elegance and all-day breakfast? Sign us up. Snap Mad-Men-themed selfies galore at Empire Diner, serving elevated diner fare daily. Choose among dishes like the falafel burger, rye pancakes topped with apples, and a house omelette made with Boursin cheese and fresh herbs. 210 10th Ave., 212-335-2277,

Momofuku Nishi

You'll find David Chang’s Eighth Avenue outpost serving Italian-inspired dishes, and the results are a smash. Weekend brunches at Momofuku Nishi are well worth the inevitable wait, with brown butter pancakes and Ceci e Pepe pasta topped with a fried egg on the menu. Sandwiches, pizza, and drinks like the Witch Daisy will put you in weekend mode. 232 Eighth Ave., 646-565-4109,


Craving avocado toast? Get yourself to Citizens. This cheery Australian cafe has you covered with its Smashing Avocado, made with feta and fresh cilantro, as well as healthy veggie bowls and Super Fun Happy Bowls like the Rose Grain Porridge. Pair one with a pretty Velvet Latte, and fire up your Instagram for a healthy and Instagrammable brunch.  401 W. 25th St., 212-372-7663,

Foragers Table

Attached to Foragers Market, this sun-dappled restaurant sources regional ingredients for artful and always appealing cuisine. Come for a brunch of vegan Farmhouse Shakshuka or very satisfying organic Chicken & Waffles (with bacon inside the waffle—what?!). Seasonal cocktails and local beer and ciders are also available. 233 Eighth Ave., 212-243-8888,

El Quinto Pino

A standout among Chelsea's tapas spots is El Quinto Pino, which serves an abridged brunch menu on weekends. Here's why that works: the restaurant's star dish, the Uni Panini, is center stage. You can also snack on smaller plates like the chickpeas and churros, or more filling dishes like the Pisto Manchego (veggie stew with poached eggs). Be sure to order a Spanish sparkling wine or a cocktail like the Pomada (made with frozen basil, gin, and lemonade) for a refreshing treat. 401 W. 24th St., 212-206-6900,

Sullivan Street Bakery

Sullivan Street Bakery

It'll be a quick grub gab at Sullivan Street Bakery—because they don’t offer table service, and because whatever you choose will likely vanish in an instant. This is Jim Lahey’s renowned paradise for lovers of baked foods, with recipes inspired by Italian cooking. Sample a cream-filled bomboloni, a panini made with house-baked bread, or slice of pizza from behind the counter, then take your baked goods to High Line Park for a memorable picnic brunch. 236 Ninth Ave., 212-929-5900, quint

About the Author

Merrill Lee Girardeau lives and writes in Brooklyn.

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