There comes a time in every Austinite’s life when brunch is in order. Brunching is practically the highlight of the week, and the decision of where to do so should not be taken lightly.
With approximately 1,020 brunch options in Austin (thank you, Yelp) how does one decide? We narrowed in on Austin’s east side to determine the best neighborhood spots this side of I-35. Here are our 10 favorite brunch places to enjoy a delicious meal, complete with a leisurely drink or two.
The king of all brunches, a meal from Chef Jesse Griffiths' kitchen is not to be missed. Since brunch is usually only a weekend thing, Dai Due’s day menu — served Tuesday through Sunday from 10 am to 3 pm — is a real treat. Dive head first into house favorites like the hash with cured and smoked meats, turnips, and eggs or the pastrami sandwich with house-made rye bread. For those with a sweet tooth, the massive sourdough pancake with fromage blanc, strawberries, and citrus curd is a must-try. If you’re gonna go all the way, split a French press coffee and bottle of sparkling blanc de blanc.
Brunch is all about the balance between savory and sweet, and the Hightower has mastered this in one dish: chicken and waffles. Served with ginger honey syrup, hot sauce, and butter, this is the sinful bruncher’s Sunday church. Grilled pork belly sandwiches, grit waffles, and carnitas scrambles are also highlights. Seal the deal with the Bloody Mary bar that comes complete with all the regular fixings, some unique twists, and maybe even a Slim Jim or two.
With beautiful spring weather in the air, Takoba’s expansive patio is the perfect place to grab a table. Cooking from the interior of Mexico, try classics like huevos motuleños, chilaquiles, and menudo. The tortas served on Austin’s Panaderia Chuy bread are out of this world, and our favorites are the carnitas with jalapeño and guacamole and the smoked salmon with two poached eggs. Served Saturdays and Sundays, wash it all down with a fresh-made michelada or an agua fresca.
Salt & Time
Start your morning right with coffee on draft from Salt & Time. Since this is a butcher shop, you're going to need to share one of the meat boards with your group. Serving brunch on Sundays only, you can expect locally sourced ingredients incorporated in traditional brunch dishes that are expertly crafted with some unusual surprises. If you’re a late bruncher, extend your meal into Salt & Time’s daily happy hour starting at 3 pm with build-your-own salumi boards and beer and wine specials.
The newly added weekend brunch has become just as popular as Launderette's dinner service. Indulge in one-of-a-kind dishes like the fried oyster Florentine, asparagus Benedict, or duck hash. Order the pastry of the day off of the “sweet thangs” menu, and let award-winning pastry chef/owner Laura Sawicki take your taste buds on a doughy adventure.
Offering breakfast options all day every day, Blue Dahlia serves up one of our favorite midday meals. Choose from one of the rotating frittatas — there’s always one veggie and one meaty option — which come with crisp greens and freshly baked bread. For sweets, try the French crepes with chocolate sauce or the Belgian berry waffles. Blintzes, oatmeal, parfait, and granola are also available. For something delectably salty in all the right ways, try the smoked salmon tartine with dill cream cheese. We recommend sitting on the eclectic back patio with latte in hand.
For traditional Mexican and Tex-Mex favorites, look no further than this affordable mom-and-pop diner on East Seventh Street. The cozy space is a nice break from some of the trendier places going in on the east side. Order any of the tacos, wrapped in Joe’s homemade tortillas, or the mammoth chorizo con huevos plate. When you want a big, heavy Mexican breakfast, this is your spot Tuesday through Sunday. The coffee is strong, and the servers are friendly, just like a neighborhood diner should be.
Driving down East Cesar Chavez Street you almost miss the unassuming white building that houses Austin’s latest brunch craze, Juniper. Its weekend brunch offers fresh-squeezed juices, pour-over coffees, and classic Bloody Marys. Share the honey-dipped doughnut holes with your dining compadre, and try as many as the brunch plates as you can — trust us, you’ll want to try it all. Can’t-miss dishes include the roasted trumpets with feta and eggs and the roasted pear Dutch Baby.
The “barnitecture” of Jacoby’s impeccably designed space is worth the trip alone. Brunch is served Saturdays and Sundays, and the Southern comfort restaurant has made a name for itself with items like deviled eggs, quiche, cinnamon rolls, scones, blueberry French toast, duck confit migas, and smoked short rib hash. Sip on a Stumptown cold-brew coffee, which will rejuvenate you from whatever you did the night before.
Open Tuesday through Sunday, Paperboy is the east side’s new trailer that dishes out killer breakfast options to be enjoyed in its dog-friendly yard. The trailer has already developed a die-hard following for its limited menu of gourmet egg sandwiches, hash, oatmeal, and savory and sweet toasts. Finish it off with hot or cold-brewed coffee from Tweed Coffee Roasters and house-made OJ.