Why is it that people love brunch so much? Maybe it's because brunch doesn't make you stick to the typical mealtime restraints. Want eggs and a cocktail and a burger, all at once? At brunch, we can do that. Or maybe it's because it gives you a good excuse to order a cocktail (or three) in the middle of the day. In any case, the fact remains that combining breakfast and lunch into one meal was a very good idea.
Lucky for all you brunch lovers there's no shortage of places to sit down for a solid mid-morning or midday meal in the Valley. Whether you're looking for a dark place to brunch away a hangover or an airy patio to enjoy with a cocktail in hand with a couple of friends, we've got the nine best restaurants in Phoenixland for brunch.
Fàme Caffe4700 North Central Avenue
When we're in the mood for not-quite-breakfast, not-quite-lunch, we stop by Fàme Caffe in central Phoenix. It's usually busy, but the line to order moves quickly, so don't delay in choosing what to eat. We love the veggie scramble — eggs, goat cheese, mushrooms, cauliflower, and broccoli — with house potatoes, or if we're more in the mood for something sweet, the French toast crafted from sturdy country bread is also a wise choice. The lunch menu has plenty of delights as well, from the avocado grilled cheese to the garden kale salad. Also, Fàme has a standout selection of that most important brunch component: cocktails. There are plenty of a.m. favorites to choose from, including carajillos, greyhounds, palomas, and our favorite, the raspberry peach Bellini.
Morning Glory Café6106 South 32nd Street
You'll have a true farm-to-table experience at Morning Glory Café, the casual restaurant with all outside seating on the pet-friendly Breakfast & Brunch Patio at The Farm at South Mountain. You can meander through the pecan groves and walk by the veggie garden on your way down the lane to the cafe. There, you'll enjoy a breakfast or brunch menu that has everything from an American breakfast to brioche French toast to huevos rancheros. The restaurant serves breakfast/brunch from 8 to 11 a.m. Tuesday through Friday, and 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.
Dick's Hideaway6008 North 16th Street
Hangovers can happen any day of the week. Which is why it's so perfect that Dick's Hideaway, the tiny bar and restaurant in uptown Phoenix, serves brunch every day from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. This is the perfectly dark, cool place to belly up to the bar (or a bar top) and fill up on heavy hangover-curing fare like carne adovada with eggs, green chile stew and eggs, or meatloaf and eggs – topped, of course, with your choice of red or green chile, or both. And if you're looking for something a little more traditional, Dick's has that, too. The menu also includes eggs Benedict, though it's gussied up with jalapeño Hollandaise, as well as simple pancakes and French toast. Best of all, you can order your brunch with a simple but well-executed house margarita or Bloody Mary for a bit of the hair of the dog to ease your pain.
Windsor5223 North Central Avenue
This comfortably hip spot is located in the historic uptown Phoenix neighborhood for which it is named, and serves the perfect refreshments, including Bloody Marys, pitchers of beer, and other cocktails, for $5 during brunch. To sweeten the deal, Windsor even offers a Bloody Mary bar stocked with spices, salts, and pickles to meet all your cocktail preferences. Windsor's brunch menu has something for everyone's morning and midday tastes, from hearty Southern-style sausage and gravy (sure to tame any hangover beast) to the more delicate and sweet homemade beignets, served warm with strawberry jam and caramel sauce. Brunch runs from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday.
Snooze, an AM EateryMultiple Locations
Sometimes good things come to those who wait, and sometimes that wait can be up to an hour at Snooze, an AM Eatery. At all four locations (Town & Country, Tempe, Gilbert, and Kierland), the atmosphere is fun and the staff friendly, but seriously, plan on having some time to kill. The menu features many twists on traditional dishes, including the breakfast potpie – think of a puff pastry filled with sausage gravy and topped with an egg (made your way) and served with hash browns. The Brewmosa, a blend of wheat beer and orange juice, is a surprisingly good version of the traditional mimosa. It's also a perfect follow-up to the free cups of coffee you can enjoy while waiting for a table. Each location is open daily from 6:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.
The Gladly2201 East Camelback Road
Sunday brunch at The Gladly, which runs from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., makes the perfect setting to kick back, relax, and enjoy excellent food. Chef Bernie Kantak's brunch menu perpetuates his habit of turning familiar American classics into something elevated and new. Take the Eggs Bernie-dict as an example: Kantak upgrades this brunch-time staple with a toasted pretzel roll, smoked sausage, and cheese fondue. Or there's the excellent Grits & Eggs, which takes a luxurious turn thanks to the addition of shaved Pecorino Romano and just a hint of truffle oil. For those who like to start their Sunday with a little spice, the Spiced Bloody Mary shouldn't be missed. Made with Absolut Peppar vodka and house-made mix, it's got just the right amount of kick to keep you coming back for more.
The MissionMultiple Locations
Brunch at chef Matt Carter's The Mission in Scottsdale (with another location at Kierland) manages to be both elegant and exciting; thanks to flawless service and a menu that highlights his refined take on Mexican cuisine. The brunch menu, which is available from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Sunday only, includes everything from red chilaquiles and Tecate-marinated skirt steak to corn and crab pancakes that feature sweet Dungeness crab, smoked Oaxacan pasilla crema, and a sprinkling of cilantro. To make the meal particularly memorable, we suggest asking for a table on the restaurant's spacious and covered back patio. You'll feel worlds away from the hustle and bustle of Old Town Scottsdale.
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SumoMaya6560 North Scottsdale Road, Scottsdale
The Bottomless Brunch at SumoMaya, the stylish Mex-Asian fusion parlor set in Scottsdale, offers a diverse spread of about 15 small plates. Dishes range from a basket of locally made, sweet Mexican breads to rib eye guacamole, coconut pancakes, tenderloin Benedict, and a Cuban breakfast sandwich. Sides include black beans and Chinese sausage fried rice, and dessert is a family-style serving of buñuelos or a liquid cheesecake brulee. You can definitely get seconds here, if not more. The endless brunch is $29 per diner, and it’s an extra $10 for – seriously – bottomless mimosas, Bloody Marys, and margaritas. Brunch hours are 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday.
Virtu Honest Craft3701 North Marshall Way, Scottsdale
This Old Town Scottsdale restaurant is so good it's become one of our perennial favorite spots for brunch. The elegant interior is downright classy, and the patio is casually comfortable. You'll feel as at home in jeans and a T-shirt as you will a cocktail dress or suit. The menu boasts brunch favorites like lemon ricotta pancakes pork ragu, and chistorra and eggs, as well as chef Gio Osso's famous grilled octopus with fennel, arugula, chickpeas, and Calabrese chile butter. Don't worry, though, Virtu didn't forget the sweeter brunch dishes. There's also brown butter French toast, and a parfait with vanilla yogurt, hazelnut praline, Marsala figs, and spiced honey. The restaurant serves brunch weekdays from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., and Saturday and Sunday starting at 9 a.m.
Editor's note: This story was originally published on April 7, 2015. It was updated on November 15, 2019.