Top Ten Places for Brunch You Might Not Have Thought Of
Everybody knows about the elaborate brunch buffets at Baltimore's hotels. I want to suggest some restaurants you might not have thought of. (You'll find more under the Brunch category to the right.)
N.B.: When we decided on brunches for today's Top Ten, I forgot that this next Sunday is Easter, so the information may not be accurate for the holiday version of brunch. (I know it isn't for the John Eager Howard Room, pictured.)
I also wanted to mention Evil Hamster's suggestion of the Mill Valley Garden Center in case you missed it. I didn't include it on the list because it seems to be breakfast not brunch, but here's the link.
Here's my list: ...
*Alexander's Tavern in Fells Point. Readers have given this place mixed reviews since I ate there, but I had a good meal. Brunch includes eggs Chesapeake (the local take on eggs Benedict), steak and eggs, homemade biscuits and gravy, french toast. A la carte menu. $6-$14. Saturday and Sunday, 11 a.m.-3 p.m.
* Bonaparte Breads (903 S. Ann St., 410-342-4000) in Fells Point. They don't call it brunch, but this Parisian-style cafe serves buttery croissants, other pastries, quiches, specialty coffees, juices and so on as well as sandwiches. You can eat outside soon. Good suggestion, Matt. Hours are 8 a.m.-6 p.m.
* Christopher Daniel in Lutherville. The buffet includes shrimp, prime rib, bacon, sausage, pasta, salads, eggs made to order, muffins, cakes and all-you-can-drink drinks for $18.95. 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Last seating is at 1:30 p.m.
* Copra in downtown Baltimore. Breakfast buffet with omelets made to order, assorted muffins, chocolate fountain with fresh fruit, bottomless Bloody Marys and mimosas. All for $14.95. 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Reservations highly recommended, they told me when I called.
* John Eager Howard Room in the Belvedere (from the Owl Bar kitchen). This is a brand-new brunch buffet, with six stations or so, including omelets, in what was once the most beautiful dining room in Baltimore. The cost is $14.95, and it's served from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
* Open Door Cafe in Bel Air. This is a sweet little place with a moderately priced menu of breakfast and lunch items. It has creamed chip beef (OK, not a favorite of mine, but not something you can get everywhere either) and also croissants, homemade granola and crab and asparagus omelets. Saturday and Sunday, 11 a.m.-4 p.m.
* Orchard Market & Cafe in Towson. They call it Sunday brunch; but if you want breakfast foods, you're out of luck. Still, the Persian food is excellent. The Web site lists the hours for the buffet, which costs $13.95, as 11:45 a.m.-2:30 p.m.; but when I called, the woman told me 11:30 a.m.–2 p.m. (a la carte menu till 4:00 p.m.)
* Tersiguel's in Ellicott City. This French restaurant doesn't call its Sunday midday hours brunch, but there are crepes and omelets on the menu, and there are always several brunch specials, like last Sunday's french toast with maple syrup, persimmon and strawberries. 10:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m.
* Victoria Gastro Pub in Columbia. I loved the homemade biscuits when I ate there. The a la carte menu includes an English breakfast (hefty), lamb hash and cinnamon french toast. Brunch Saturday and Sunday 10 a.m.-2 p.m.
* Waterfront Hotel in Fells Point. Brunch in an 18-century tavern. The a la carte menu runs around $8-$14. and for $10 you get all-you-can-drink mimosas, Bloody Marys and screwdrivers. Thanks to Brian for reminding me of this. Sunday 10 a.m.-3 p.m.
(Photo of the John Eager Howard Room courtesy of Truffles Catering)