By Alexis Garrity By Alexis Garrity | March 11, 2023 | Food & Drink Feature
Here's our list of the best brunch places in Orange County for your Sunday fun day.
Book a gorgeous seaside brunch at AVEO Table + Bar at the newly rebranded Waldorf Astoria Monarch Beach Resort & Club. Enjoy dishes like smoked Scottish salmon with heirloom tomatoes and capers, and red velvet pancakes with cream cheese Chantilly paired with a plethora of freshly squeezed juices. 1 Monarch Beach Resort N, Dana Point, 949.234.3915, WEBSITE
2. Farmhouse at Roger’s Gardens
Pull up a seat in the open-air dining room and indulge in brunch staples from chef Rich Mead. Deviled eggs, seasonal frittatas and French toast delight while a bottle of bubbly or an order of the beloved Farmhouse Bloody Mary will have you feeling festive. Stop by the gorgeous gift shop to pick up something special for you or your loved one on your way out. 2301 San Joaquin Hills Road, Corona Del Mar, 949.640.1415, WEBSITE
This Laguna Beach staple is offering a selection of prime alfresco options this Easter. Dine in its beautiful garden terrace and choose from brunch classics such as hash browns au gratin or Selanne’s Benedict. Thirsty? Order the celebratory mimosa flight paired with freshly squeezed juices in flavors of peach, blood orange, cherry and mango. Before you go: availability of brunch specials can depend on the holiday. 1464 S. Coast Highway, Laguna Beach, 949.715.9881, WEBSITE
Come hungry: Beloved French bistro Marché Moderne is famous for its Sunday brunch (11am-2pm)—and there's good reason. Full of decadent delights, you can't go wrong with any of the husband-and-wife chef duo's creations, ranging from the savory—see the potato crisp with smoked salmon or the deviled eggs four ways (the black and white truffle scented is a must-order)—to the sweet—don’t miss the Everything Coconut brioche French toast with coco-mango gelato. Chef-owner Florent Marneau and his wife, Amelia, the brilliant pastry chef who’s whipping up memorable croissants and heavenly blueberry clafoutis brulée (complete with the maple syrup ice cream of your dreams), continue to outdo themselves. Before you go: availability of brunch specials can depend on the holiday. 7862 Pacific Coast Highway, Newport Beach, 714.434.7900, WEBSITE
5. Malibu Farm
Sandwiches (hello, chicken ricotta bacon burger), shareable plates (think crudités with red pepper hummus) and larger dishes (like Korean short ribs) have patrons stepping outside of standard brunch fare at Lido Marina Village's Malibu Farm. The inventive dishes are the reality of chef Helene Henderson's dream to bring farm-to-table cuisine to the masses with ingredients sourced from SoCal purveyors. Swedish mini pancakes topped with whipped cream and a seasonal fruit compote; quinoa oatmeal; and the featured @alectreffs dish collab with Instagram influencer Alex Treffs that's simply too good to pass up (two Los Sundays skinny margs (for the price of one!) when you order the delicious steak nachos), are also on offer. Lido Marina Village, Newport Beach, 949.791.2096, WEBSITE
Set in a charming 1930s brick building across from Mission San Juan Capistrano, Bloom Restaurant & Bar infuses modernity throughout the historic space, creating an environment that feels welcoming. Guests are now invited to enjoy expertly crafted cocktails and New American fare under the appreciable arched windows for brunch. The recently released brunch menu features must-try classics with a twist—including Kurobuta pork belly benedict and a smoked salmon and fromage blanc omelet.
7. Ellie's Table
Rustic in both feel and in food, Ellie’s Table in San Juan Capistrano is serving homemade happiness out of the city’s beautifully bricked and historic Egan House. Also considered one of Orange County’s best caterers, this restaurant offers a menu full of fresh and from-scratch dishes using sustainable ingredients to create simple, clean food with bold flavors. For brunch, indulge in a full espresso bar, freshly baked pastries and artisanally crafted favorites like the chile relleno quiche.
Bienvenue à Paris in Orange County with Moulin– a Parisian-style cafe creating the most authentic French experience for guests. Rooted in tradition, these French artisans have devoted themselves to presenting the very best of French cuisine, beginning their work in the middle of the night to display the most beautiful fresh baked breads, handmade pastries, and savory foods when doors open each morning. Brunch favorites include Crêpe Sucre Citron and Le Croque Monsieur complimented by a hot cup of Chocolat Chaud or Champagne for those feeling bubbly.
Haute Cakes Caffe has been proudly serving classic American fare to the community of Newport Beach since 1990. Offering breakfast and lunch menu items until 3PM daily, this popular eatery provides its guests with both indoor and outdoor seating in their quaint courtyard adorned with lush greenery. Fuel your morning with the full-service coffee bar featuring Common Room Roasters, house-made pastries, and a Chorizo Scramble or the famous Orange Ricotta Haute Cakes.
10. Cafe Mimosa
Brunch is an everyday affair at this charming, family-owned French cafe. Seven days a week, Cafe Mimosa in San Clemente is serving its guests French-American cuisine featuring 100% organic ingredients and only fish that is responsibly farmed. True to its name, Cafe Mimosa offers an array of fresh mimosa flavors– including Pomegranate, Lingonberry, Elderflower, and Black Currant, to pair with your morning meal. Signature dishes include the Frisee A La Mimosa, the Mimosa Burger, and the Mimosa Salad customized with your choice of salmon, steak, or chicken.
OEB Breakfast Co. in Newport Beach is headed by spirited founder and classically trained chef, Mauro Martina, who spent his adolescence in Italy amid local markets filled with fresh, rich ingredients. These experiences were centered around incredible food and, more importantly, connecting with those who cultivated their bounties with love. Consistent with this ideology, chef Mauro’s restaurants, with locations throughout the U.S. and Canada, are preparing farm-to-table fresh and familiar brunch classics, balanced with irreplicable twists, as exemplified by their Threesome and Gold Digga breakfast plates.
Photography by: Photos courtesy of Selanne Steak Tavern