Like many people, brunch is a highlight of our weekend. We tout breakfast as our favourite meal of the day (all that not eating for eight hours really works up an appetite), but enhancing a regular brekkie with a lie-in, the option of having a breakfast cocktail with zero judgement, plus an order of pancakes ‘for the table’, and it doesn't get much better. Some people hike on the weekend, we brunch. Here are our favourite spots to do it in the city centre (suburbs coming in the next mail out)...
1) Bread 41, Pearse Street
The one and only Bread 41 recently opened their 'eatery' upstairs, providing an extra 40 seats for the never-ending demand. It’s only open Friday through Sunday serving a varied brunch, including a breakfast naan and a croissant eggs benedict, with all the bread and doughs made expertly in-house. Be warned however, this is a no wifi or laptop zone, so expect to unplug and enjoy your meal without any distractions. If you’re visiting during the week, you can enjoy their downstairs café as normal for pastries, breads and sandwiches.
2) Tang, Abbey Street & Dawson Street
This small but mighty café on the corner of Dawson Street is best known for their Middle Eastern inspired lunches, with flavour-packed salads and perfectly marinated meats drawing in the work crowd, but their breakfast and brunch menu is another draw. Tang serves an all-day brunch on the weekends, including the perfectly spicy shakshuka which is never far from our minds, and a granola bowl that we've tried to recreate at home more times than we'd care to admit. Luckily for the people of Dublin they expanded into an additional larger location on Abbey Street a few years ago, filling a brunch shaped hole on the North side of the River Liffey.
3) As One, City Quay
This bright and spacious café is based on the quays, and focuses on serving seasonal, locally sourced food that's good for your gut. As One boasts a hefty roster of the best suppliers around, including McNally Farm, Higgins Butchers, Ring Farm and Cloudpicker coffee, and their brunch menu makes good use of all of these great ingredients. While we’d love to say we would be going for their seasonal yoghurt bowl with fruit, we know when it came down to it we wouldn’t be able to resist the 'Breakfast Muffin', loaded with sausage meat, black pudding, egg and cheese.
4) Mad Yolks, Smithfield
Founded by two brothers, Mad Yolks have been slinging the finest egg sambos to the hungry masses at music festivals for years, and more recently started popping up at weekend markets and in pubs in Dublin 8, Stoneybatter and Glasthule. They've since moved on to open their first permanent shop in Smithfield, so now you can head to Dublin 7 for eggy goodness and great tunes seven days a week. Look out for our Mad Yolks Once Over coming in the next mail out.
5) l'Gueuleton, Fade Street
You might think it weird to be sipping on a flat white in the same place that you likely partied into the wee hours the night before, and you're dead right - it is weird, but it works. Once you get their signature Bloody Mary into you, the flashbacks of your dodgy dancing will fade into the distance, promise. The food in L'Gueuleton is not your usual bar food or brunch menu, and has something for everyone, from ham hock Eggs Benedict to steak frites. Mimosas, Bellinis and Rossinis are recommended accompaniments.
6) Brother Hubbard North, Capel Street
Brother Hubbard came on the scene when there was really very little in the way of brunch menus in Dublin. Their mezze trays were a sight for sore eyes and rumbling tummies, and they immediately gained a following, and if a Middle Eastern breakfast isn't what you're after, there's always the peanut butter and jelly French toast. They expanded from the Northside to the Southside on Harrington Street, and have now gone even further south with an outpost in Ranelagh, which has been excitedly welcomed by locals.
7) Krewe, Capel Street
This New Orleans-inspired kitchen say they are 'bringing the dirty south to the Northside' - to translate, this means flavour and spiced-packed Creole food like jambalaya and blacked fish tacos. For brunch Krewe switch up the traditional eggs benny and serve BBQ shrimp Po' Boys, and fried chicken on waffles with chive hollandaise and hot sauce - a nightmare for your arteries, a dream for your mouth. This spot is all about fun, so bring some friends and make sure to try their deep-south inspired cocktails.
8) Chimac, Aungier Street
Did you know that the home of the KimCheese burger now has a brunch menu every Sunday? The perfect cure to any hangover, pop in to Chimac for their jalapeño hash browns and eggs, or if you’re in mood for their signature crispy chicken, you can order it loaded onto kimchi waffles.
9) Network, Aungier Street
This little spot on Aungier Street is a regular coffee pitstop for us, but we also love to drop in to Network for the cheekily named 'Notions on Toast' – loaded with, you guessed it, avocado, alongside a plethora of other new-fangled toppings like dukkah and pickled ginger. Sure, we may never be able to afford a house but at least we’ve got great brunch options.
10) Blas Café, King's Inn Street
Not somewhere you would come across by chance, Blas is hidden off Parnell Street in the Chocolate Factory, flanked by multi-story car parks. It’s a cosy, casual spot, and you won't find any airs or graces here, just great food. They serve brunch on Saturdays only so make your way here for some Iron Hash (full of FX Buckley pudding, rooster potatoes and topped with poached eggs), or try one of their great veggie options, like slow-cooked Blas beans on toast.
11) One Society, Gardiner Street
Think of everything you crave on a brunch menu, and you’ll probably find it on One Society’s menu, including potentially the most extensive American style pancake menu in Dublin. They generously run the brunch menu from Wednesday to Sunday so no need to wait until the weekend to satisfy your brunch cravings.
12) Urbanity, Smithfield
If you’re ever getting to the hangry stage of the day, we would advise you to avoid Urbanity’s socials or it might just send you over the edge. Everything they post looks ultra colourful and ultra flavoursome, showcasing their seasonal menu which changes often. They always have interesting brunch specials, and there's a great outdoor area which we're expecting to be packed on summer weekend mornings.
13) Eathos, Baggot Street
With two locations on Baggot Street, Eathos is where you head if you're feeling virtuous and ready to nourish your body. They have all sorts of healthy options like Açaí bowls and a breakfast salad, but also the option to be a bit bolder with a full Irish or a croissant filled with scrambled egg and Gubeen chorizo. You do you, but make sure you leave some room for one of their cakes - there's always room for cake.
14) Veginity, Dorset Street
Veginity have won a host of awards over the years for their clever approach to vegan food. Rather than going down the bean burger and falafel route, they've successfully taken the old carnivore favourites like cheese toasties and chorizo scrambled eggs and turned them vegan. Head chef Mark Senn is very creative with his ingredients and cooking methods, and has managed to dazzle even the most staunch meat lovers. For us, the most impressive wizardry is in their pastry selection which is notoriously difficult to imitate without butter, but they've nailed it.
15) Ebb & Flow, Camden Street
One of the more recent openings in the city centre, Ebb & Flow relocated from Clontarf to Camden Street in late 2021, bringing a little slice of peace to an otherwise hectic area. The sage green exterior sets the scene for the calm vibe they've become known for, and is perfect for a slow start to your day. The menu appeases carnivores and veggies alike, with dishes like an Asian pork bap, soufflé pancakes and vegan scrambled eggs. The café is owned by the team behind Full Circle coffee so expect a decent cup of joe with brekkie.
16) Herb Street, Grand Canal Dock
Herb Street opened when there wasn’t much in the way of brunch destinations in Dublin, let alone in Grand Canal Dock. Luckily times have changed, but even with a glut of brekkie places at our fingertips, Herb Street have managed to hold onto that first mover advantage, with a loyal following turning up each weekend trying to get a coveted spot on their terrace.
Our favourite places for brunch in the suburbs is coming in our next mail out on Tuesday 19th April...