December 12, 2016

The San Francisco Brunch Heatmap: Where to Brunch NOW, December 2016

It’s always the question of the week: where to brunch come the weekend? It’s an especially significant topic in San Francisco, where mimosas and eggs have become a very serious pastime, with lines at the most popular places forming early and lasting late. There are the always-beloved brunch spots to choose from — Outerlands, Nopa, Zazie, Plow — places that have firmly established themselves as essential to the brunch scene.

But this list covers a slightly different category: the absolute hottest places to eat your morning meal right now. From a brunch-only restaurant to beer-focused offerings, there’s a bunch of places to choose from when you want to see and be seen. They’re either brand new or just consistently busy, but they all have one thing in common: they’re good. So all you have to do is roll out of bed and show up.

1. ‘āina

The first word is out on ‘aina’s Hawaiian brunch food, and the word is good. This brunch-only spot serves up island favorites with a twist, like kalbi loco moco and spam musubi “ssam style.” Low ABV cocktails are fresh and fun additions for daytime drinking, including options such as a take on the uber popular Hawaiian shave ice.

900 22nd St
San Francisco, CA 94107
(415) 814-3815

2. Belga

Cow Hollow’s official spot for maximum brunch indulgence post-Soul Cycle is Belga. The seasonally-changing flatbread is perfect for sharing, as are the brioche beignets. There are, of course, classic brunch items, but the pork schnitzel with braised cabbage, spätzle, and sunny eggs is a welcome change. There’s also a special selection of brunch-specific cocktails; you can’t go wrong with the Bloody Beer (Ballast Point Sculpin habanero IPA, house bloody mix, paprika salt). Brunch is served on Saturday and Sundays from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Aubrie Pick
2000 Union St
San Francisco, CA 94123
(415) 872-7350

3. Beretta

Beretta’s weekend brunch menu offers special cocktails, new dishes and a “brunch punch.” This refreshing seasonal cauldron of booze changes weekly, and is $8 per glass during brunch. Early birds can stroll in at 11 a.m., but brunch lasts all day. Outdoor seating is also available.

Declan McKerr
1199 Valencia St
San Francisco, CA 94110
(415) 695-1199

4. El Buen Comer

El Buen Comer, the new Bernal Heights restaurant focused on Mexican home cooking from Isabel Caudillo, serves a brunch-specific menu on Saturdays from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. and all day on Sundays from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Think chilaquiles, huevos divorciados, and guisados alongside housemade tortillas, micheladas, and agua fresca mimosas.

El Buen Comer
3435 Mission St
San Francisco, CA 94110
(415) 817-1542

5. Fiorella

Pizza is the most indulgent of brunch fare, and Fiorella has some of the best around. For for the green, egg, and ham pie, which comes with broccoli di ciccio, egg, house cured pancetta, fior di latte, and ricotta for a more morning-leaning option, and accompany it with other egg dishes, salads, and of course, some drinks.

2339 Clement St
San Francisco, CA 94121
(415) 340-3049

6. Huxley

Huxley, the tiny Tenderloin diamond-in-the-rough, is now serving Saturday and Sunday brunch from 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. New chef Manfred Wrembel has brought on a hangover-worthy burger, the “Hux Deluxe,” which is made with a dry-aged ground chuck, bacon, ‘Merican cheese, MSG aioli and a bun that subs pickle brine for water. There’s also oysters, steak tartare, and more classic fare like a frittata.

848 Geary Blvd
San Francisco, CA 94109
(415) 800-8223

7. Locanda

For a taste of Rome in morning (or early afternoon), Locanda is the place. Light, seasonal dishes like a little gem salad with tuna, egg, beans, and olives accompany heartier options like a “carbonara Benedict,” with two poached eggs, prosciutto cotto, pizza bianca, and hollandaise. Wise Sons bagels are also in the house, complete with Scottish lox, smoked local black cod, and Olsen’s herring. Brunch is Saturday and Sunday from 10:30 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Stefanie Tuder
557 Valencia St
San Francisco, CA 94110
(415) 863-6800

8. Magnolia Gastropub & Brewery

Magnolia Gastropub has gotten a reboot, with all-new menus from chefs David Bazirgan (Dirty Habit) and Freedom Rains (Belga). That includes brunch, which features pub classics like steak and eggs, a full English breakfast, a burger, and more. And, of course, there’s all the beer you could want come morning.

Eater Archives
1398 Haight St
San Francisco, CA 94117
(415) 864-7468

9. Mason Pacific

New head chef Max Mackinnon is continuing his refined cooking style at brunch with dishes like a sourdough waffle with maple and bacon or smoked trout with crispy potato and braised leeks. It runs Saturdays and Sundays from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

1358 Mason St
San Francisco, CA 94133
(415) 374-7185

10. Nomica

Nomica’s brunch runs Sundays from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. with the same over-the-top menu style from chef Hiroo Nagahara as dinner service, which means dishes like cheddar lavender biscuits with miso honey butter or karaage chicken and beer waffle with matcha butter and truffle maple. The drink portion of the menu focuses on champagne, and to highlight that, bubbles are half off at brunch.

2223 Market St
San Francisco, CA 94114
(415) 655-3280

11. Old Bus Tavern

Giving you an excuse to drink beer in the morning, Bernal Heights brewpub Old Bus Tavern has added brunch service, featuring dishes like oatmeal-maple pancakes, pulled pork eggs Benedict, and all-new brunch cocktails. Bonus: there’s a new patio to enjoy it on, too.

Ze Shen
3193 Mission St
San Francisco, CA 94110
(415) 843-1938

12. Salumeria

Salumeria is now in the weekend brunch game, offering a small but satisfying selection of breakfast offerings like poached eggs with pulled pork, salsa verde, and polenta or avocado toast. But the dish to get is the fried chicken and egg sandwich, which has become an instant Instagram favorite. There are also some morning cocktails, like carafes of mimosas.


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