There are two things that are certain in post-recession Dublin - astronomical rent and brunch. Good brunch was probably one of the best things to come out of the recession (hey low VAT rate, wuu2? We miss you, come back...) Even though there’s a brunch spot around every corner, most of them are boring AF - if we wanted scrambled eggs on toast we'd stay home and do an infinitely better job with our Scéal toast, peanut rayu, McNally peashoots - apologies, that's the hanger talking. Well, worry your hungover head no further, we've compiled our ultimate guide to the best brunch places in the city...
1. Two Pups
Two Pups came onto the scene as a pop up coffee shop back in 2015 and has been growing ever since (literally, they’ve had to expand the café for more space). When you ask anyone about where to go for brunch, Two Pups always come up. They have doggos, yoga above the cafe and French toast that's the stuff of legend.
2. The Fumbally
This place is utter madness at the weekend so expect long queues to order food, but it still manages to have a good buzz. Take the time to wait (agonizing over the menu will take time anyway) and then go and sit down with the paper. The Fumbally is almost like brunch school for Dublin with alumni going onto open their own cafés with a Fumbally spin on the menu. Bonus feature: the Saturday Market where millennials spend all of their disposable income. Totally worth it, it’s not like we’ll ever own houses.
Tang, which opened a second location on the northside last autumn, has bridged a business during the week, party during the weekend format. While midweek offers a speedy lunch service with their salads and flatbreads, their brunch menu offers an extended version of their breakfast menu, which really just means unlimited access to their granola dish, of which we are very big fans.
4. Meet Me In The Morning
Meet Me in the Morning is an idyllic café to go to on a sunny day (outside tables FTW) and has been changing the game in Dublin brunch since it opened in 2016. They added a takeaway coffee shop, ‘Reference Coffee’, next door last year, so there's now two reasons to head to Pleasants Street. The menu evolves every so often, but certain dishes like the ‘Eggs and Greens’ are staples for good reason.
Nestled in between the houses in Portobello is Bibi’s, Dublin 8’s secret-not-so-secret brunch spot. It’s pretty calm during the week but at the weekend, be prepared for a wait. They know their way around a plate of French toast and their Turkish eggs might be the best in the city.
6. The Seafood Café
Go for the build your own Bloody Mary station. Stay for the build your own Bloody Mary station. If you’re sick of standard Dublin brunch fare, try The Seafood Café, especially when you're in such a state from the night before that only an alcohol infused brunch can fix you. Ours is a plate of hot buttered crumpets with shrimp.
Alma exploded onto the scene in January of this year, and overnight became one of the most popular brunch spots in town, with the only downside being the queues to get in. With strong Argentinian influences on the menu and great service, they're already a solid member of the Dublin brunch club.
8. Brother Hubbard North
Brother Hubbard North is one of the OG brunch purveyors of Dublin, with locations on both sides of the river. They’ve kept their Middle-Eastern influence from the start but brunch is an eclectic mix with everything from cornbread and greens to French toast with chocolate truffle ganache, tahini-date caramel and sesame honeycomb.
9. Legit Coffee Co
We were blown away by the brunch at Legit on the North Circular Road, particularly the pulled pork benedict. It’s the kind of place that you dream of when suffering with a hangover, and while at this stage we should all just admit that brunch won’t fix a hangover, we won’t stop trying.
3fe’s first proper restaurant was a long anticipated but welcome addition to Dublin’s dining scene. Gertrude offers something different, a bridge between a cafe and a restaurant, and brunch dishes like their buttermilk chicken stack with honey butter and hot sauce and the pork tonkatsu sandwich are standouts. Plus there's good wine (or fizz if it's before midday).
11. Five Points
From 3fe alumni in Harolds Cross, Five Points is a place that cares about the food, the coffee and gets really creative with the specials. Seasonal granola with rhubarb and tarragon anyone?
Fia is a perfect neighbourhood example of brunch. It’s far enough out of town to get away from the buzz of the city and the menu is simple, provenance based and always tasty. Here's their current French toast, because we really love French toast. This one's with rhubarb and ginger compote, blood orange custard and lemon balm. OMFG.
Storyboard brings some interesting flavours to the table, like their kimchi pancakes and ever changing spuds dish. It’s great for good coffee and fermented drinks, and while the menu shifts every so often the popular staples remain. Otherwise there's a good chance of a riot.
14. Two Boys Brew
The two boys of TBB took inspiration from their time in Melbourne to create their cafe, and it guarantees great coffee and inventive food - it’s hard to imagine the site was once a chicken shop. These guys are all about precision and hospitality and their following shows it.
Groundstate is a godsend for anyone looking for the best Croque Madame of their life near Heuston Station. Former Love Supreme barista Andy Joyce and Mark Quilty opened the cafe/yoga studio late autumn and have created a space that makes you want to move in. Presently you can only stay until the last evening yoga class finishes, but you could always hide under one of the tables.