Brunch is back, and Houstonians are here for it. Everyone has a favorite classic spot for a lazy weekend meal, but diners have plenty of new options to lure them towards something a little different.
The list below includes several of the hottest openings for both 2020 and 2021 along with a few more established spots that have rolled out new brunch offerings. Almost all of them offer outdoor seating, which is definitely a plus while Houston still enjoys a few more weeks of relatively mild temperatures.
From classic Benedicts to globally inspired bites, this list offers options for every taste — along with some boozy suggestions for creating an appropriately festive atmosphere.
Now under the leadership of chef Kenneth Hamilton, the East End restaurant serves a Louisiana-inspired brunch menu that includes shrimp and grits, beignets, and a Creole Benedict made with crab cakes and bacon fat Hollandaise. Pair it with any of the housemade cocktails or a selection from the well-priced wine list. The spacious patio offers plenty of room for socially distant dining.
Houston’s hottest restaurant unveiled its new brunch on Easter Sunday. The menu covers a wide range of selection that includes some staples from the dinner menu with several new additions that include Benedicts, omelettes, and a lobster soft scramble; split an order of pancakes, cinnamon buns, or cheddar-scallion biscuits. Cocktails, non-alcoholic sips, and the extensive wine list offer plenty of refreshing options.
Pitmaster Jim Buchanan has added Sunday brunch to the 64-year old Fulshear institution. The menu includes pork ribs with a waffle and eggs; chopped brisket hash; and smoked monkey bread. Add a michelada, mimosa, or a glass of prosecco to sip on the restaurant’s recently constructed outdoor patio.
Hungry Like the Wolf
The smash hit ’80s diner has been drawing serious crowds at all hours, but it’s especially popular on weekends. Opt for breakfast items like pancakes, breakfast sandwiches, or eggs plates or choose from classic diner fare like the Roadhouse grilled cheese and the Optimus Prime burger. An extensive selection of photo-worthy cocktails rounds out the experience.
Ronnie Killen’s comfort food restaurant offers an well-executed selection of brunch staples. Start with biscuits and gravy, pulled pork deviled eggs, or Killen’s signature pork belly burnt ends. Entree options include thick stacks of pancakes, chicken and waffles, and pork belly eggs Benedict. Add an eye opener such as a Bloody Mary, Ranchwater, or Maple Old Fashioned.
The Heights restaurant’s tapas-style brunch menu incorporates Venezuelan, Spanish, Mexican, Houstonian, and Italian flavors. Selections include Barbacoa Cachapa (Venezuelan corn pancakes topped with barbacoa), spaghetti carbonara with chorizo, and a global cheese board that’s made for sharing. Drinks include mimosa carafes with various fruit juices, an avocado margarita, and a passion fruit mojito.
Chef Travis McShane’s Montrose restaurant puts an Italian spin on brunch with dishes like pizza topped with guanciale and eggs and a frittata with spring vegetables. Staples from the dinner are present, too, which means diners can opt for the signature roast chicken with salsa verde or hanger steak. Ostia’s shaded courtyard and light-filled greenhouse are ideal spaces for spring’s milder temperatures.
Relish Restaurant & Bar
Brunch has returned to this River Oaks spot. New tastes such as buttermilk pancakes and a smoked salmon plate join staples like chicken and waffles and avocado toast on chef Dustin Teague’s menu. Along with the food, Relish has rolled a new cocktail menu with selections named after One Hit Wonders like the Don’t Worry Be Happy (vodka, cucumber, lemon, chamomile, Cachaca, and bitters) and the Come on Eileen (gin, strawberry-basil shrub, lime, velvet falernim, Peychaud Bitters, and seltzer).
NBA star James Harden’s Midtown restaurant is earning buzz for chef Tobias Dorzon’s decadent fare, and the chef’s brunch menu is similarly over the top. Look for options like deep fried strawberry cheesecake French toast, fried chicken with churro-spiced waffle, and a seafood boil and grits that comes with shrimp, crawfish, and a lobster tail. Reservations are not required, but getting there early is highly recommended.
Tonight & Tomorrow
Newly opened inside the renovated La Colombe d’Or hotel, Tonight & Tomorrow offers European-inspired fare made with locally sourced ingredients. For brunch, the offerings include avocado tartine, eggs Benedicts, and the crab ravigote that has been a LCD staple for years. The elegant dining room adds a sense of occasion to any meal.