Mom is a fickle one. She may want to go all out with a syrup-drenched waffle, or will pull a "you know I'm an egg person, hun." Here's a breakdown of Mother's Day brunches, many of which are tried-and-true favorites, depending on her mood. The big day is Sunday, May 10. Naturally, we tapped some advice from Serious Eater (and brunch guru) Kathryn Yu.
For the Eggy Dish Lover
Trust the namesake place, Egg. They have a dish called Eggs Rothko ($8), which includes a hefty slice of Amy's brioche with an easy-cooked egg and melted Grafton cheddar, served with broiled tomatoes and a side of meat or veggies. Or try the Skillet Eggs at Cookshop—three eggs sunny-side up with grilled Berkshire bacon and Semolina raisin toast ($12). Egg: 135 North 5th Street; 718-302-5151. Cookshop: 156 10th Avenue, 212-924-4440.
For the French Toast Lover
Vanilla bean brioche battered in crème brûlèe (phew, that's a mouthful) with Vermont maple syrup ($15) at Jane. Or for the apple lovers, Bouchon Bakery also starts with brioche but dresses the toast with red wine poached apples, as part of their $35 three-course brunch. Jane: 100 West Houston Street; 212-254-7000. Bouchon Bakery: 10 Columbus Circle, third floor; 212-823-9364.
For the Freebie Scouter-Outer
OK, who's not included in this group. 10 Downing Food & Wine will give moms a complimentary glass of prosecco, bellini, or mimosa. Aleo will just comp her entree altogether (with the purchase of another at equal or greater value). The same for Toloache. At Peanut Butter & Co., mom gets a free PB&J all day from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. For a list of more perk-filled brunches, check Wined and Dined. 10 Downing Food & Wine: 10 Downing Street; 212-255-0300. Aleo: 7 West 20th Street; 212-691-8136. Toloache: 251 West 50th Street; 212-581-1818. Peanut Butter & Co.: 240 Sullivan Street; 212-677-3995.
For the Pre-Fixer
Irving Mill's Mother’s Day brunch includes an appetizer, main course (like egg white souffle with squash salad and pesto, Cream of Wheat griddle cakes with cranberry and kumquat compote, or their signature burger) and dessert from 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. ($35 per person) 116 East 16th Street; 212-254-1600.
For the Pancake Lover
Clinton Street Baking Company remains the classic. Pick from three options: banana walnut, fresh Maine blueberries, and plain. All $12, all delicious. But if you don't feel like having too many deep life conversations with Mama—the wait can be brutal—maybe go with another spot. Sometimes less crowded, Fairway Cafe serves Elaine’s Pancakes (named after chef Mitchel London's mother) that are like little clouds with slightly crunchy exteriors ($7.50). Clinton Street Baking Company: 4 Clinton Street; 646-602-6263. Fairway Cafe: 2127 Broadway; 212-595-1888.
For the Blood Mary Lover
The Cajun Mary, a Bloody Mary with a kick (and slap and a suckerpunch), at Great Jones Cafe. Or for a more carnivorous option, Prune puts a beef jerky swizzle stick in their Green Lake Bloody Mary. And if she's really thirsty, Mocca is offering all-you-can drink Marys (in addition to mimosas, screwdrivers, and Champagne for $20). (212-233-7570)Great Jones Cafe: 54 Great Jones Street; 212-674-9304. Prune: 54 East 1st Street; 212-677-6221. Mocca: 78 Reade Street: 212-233-7570.
For the Waffle Lover
Sour cream hazelnut waffles with warm berry compote ($14), something of a fruit lake hanging out on the side, at Balthazar. 80 Spring Street; 212-965-1414.
For the Locavore Mom
Lots of organic meats (in the beef hash) and locally-sourced produce (the honey in the granola) on the menu at Flatbush Farm. Usually having "farm" in the title is a pretty good sign. 76 Saint Marks Avenue, 718-622-3276.
For the Kinda Exotic Mom
The Israeli menu at Miriam in Park Slope is delicious, but definitely outside the waffle comfort zone. Try the shakshuka—poached eggs in a tomato pepper sauce, served with a side of hummus and homemade pita. 79 5th Avenue, 718-622-2250.
For the Nice Window Views Mom
Yup, that's Central Park outside Porter House. They'll be serving the dinner menu all day or a $35 prix fixe with entree options like hanger steak, pan-roasted chicken and a salmon filet. 10 Columbus Circle; 212-823-9500.
For the Splurging Mom
Telepan and Ouest are both on the Upper West Side and on the expensive side, but good odds of Mom satisfaction. Two main reasons: they take reservations and have awesome bread baskets. Telepan: 72 West 69th Street; 212-580-4300. Ouest: 2315 Broadway, 212-580-8700.
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