Where To Go For A Big Group Brunch
10 roomy spots where you can have brunch with (almost) everyone you know.
Originally you were supposed to have brunch with two friends. Now, there’s a crowd of people coming and you feel like giving up and eating the yoghurt that’s been sitting in your fridge for an unknown amount of months. Throw that yoghurt away (maybe) and try one of these 10 restaurants instead. They’re perfect for when lots of you need eggs, French toast, and something to drink—but no one knows where to go.
Caravan King's Cross
Caravan is one of London’s original brunch destinations. Although they take their coffee very seriously (even roasting their own beans), they also have a solid menu full of things like baked eggs with merguez sausage and jalapeño cornbread. There are a handful of locations around town but their King’s Cross space is the best. It’s an old, massive warehouse, and can fit half of Central St Martins in it or outside on its huge Coal Drops Yard-facing terrace. FYI it gets rammed on the weekend. The earlier you show up, the better.
Christopher’s may very well have the best French toast in London. There, we said it. Thick brioche with a soft gooey centre, topped with a scoop of vanilla ice cream, and more melted chocolate—this is the reason you come here. But that’s not all this two-floor American restaurant opposite the Lyceum in Covent Garden has to offer. It’s got high ceilings, big round tables, and plenty of space for groups. The brunch energy here is OTT with things like lobster mac and cheese and steak and eggs on the menu. Perfect for a birthday brunch, or for a mimosa-fuelled catch-up over London’s best French toast.
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Seabird is the restaurant that convinced us we like oysters. Actually, Seabird is the restaurant that convinced us we love oysters, especially when combined with panoramic views of London and an atmosphere that enables endless alfresco cocktail sipping, day or night. On the 14th floor of The Hoxton hotel, this Côte d’Azur by way of Southwark restaurant also does a brunch situation on Sundays. Bring the whole gang for lobster waffles, crab claw omelettes, and the glorious fishy freak show that is the octopus roll. Big tentacles, big booths, big potential for an impromptu photoshoot with the skyline and your mimosa.
Ozone Coffee Roasters
Ozone’s second location on Emma Street near London Fields combines their usual crowd-pleasing menu with a satisfyingly calm pine wood space, full of booths and natural light. A combination that is, basically, ideal on a Saturday morning. There’s all sorts on the menu, from granola, to hearty mince on toast with a poached egg on top, to eggs benedict with bubble and squeak. As well as a tonne of cocktails and coffees, pressed juices and more. It’s democratic, in that it’s walk-in only on the weekends too.
Dishoom King's Cross
This is a Dishoom queue support group. Welcome. We see you. We hear you. And we too know the pain of hearing “you’re looking at about an hour and 45-minute wait”. However, Dishoom offers emotional retribution with the ability to book during the day for easy breezy access to train-style booths and the bacon naan rolls. We particularly like hitting the King’s Cross location—the brightest and airiest—for an early-doors brunch featuring bloody marys, a fluffy bun maska, and plenty of green chilli on our eggs. Heads up, the breakfast menu is only served until 11.45am.
The Exhibit is a loud and proud three-story restaurant in Balham and it’s one of those places that does a bit of everything. A bit of cinema, a bit of live music, a whole lot of boozy brunch action. The food here isn’t going to revolutionise your relationship with the common egg, but stick to the avocado on toast and big egg energy dishes and you’re in safe hands. Please note, they do have one of those bottomless brunch, relay-race of prosecco deals and you’ll either be very into that or you just violently shivered. Either way, there’s enough space for you, your friends, your friends’ friends, and your favourite of the bunch, your dog.
photo credit: Charlie McKay
Vardo is a striking and spacious spot in Chelsea with huge windows facing directly onto the King’s Road. It’s as perfect for a family brunch with your flamboyant aunt, as it is for a reunion with 12 of your least hated uni friends. The menu has something for everyone, from garam masala labneh and brioche with lemon curd, to jalapeño cornbread with beef brisket and a fried egg. And when the weather’s nice, the outdoor setup is the place to be.
photo credit: Giulia Verdinelli
The scene at Gloria is about as inconspicuous as a wet dog wearing hi-vis. A Shoreditch trattoria that’s built on frills, truffle, and supersized profiteroles, you can get involved in the breakfast menu from 11.30am at the weekend. It features all of the usual suspects—eggs, pancakes, more eggs—but everything has received Gloria’s La Dolce Vita treatment. The French toast is covered in tiramisu cream, the scrambled eggs come with its own little mountain of parmigiano, and you can add 24-month prosciutto to your poached eggs. Oh, and Gloria takes bookings of up to 16 people, so you’ve officially just lost your reason not to invite your friend’s new partner who publishes pictures of their running routes. Sorry.
At Bistrotheque you’ll eat in a chic warehouse conversion with whitewashed walls, and when you’re halfway through sipping cocktails and tucking into a full English, a bloke with pink hair will start playing ‘My Way’ on a baby grand piano. The Bethnal Green bistro is an east London classic for this and many other reasons. It serves things like oysters, steak tartare, and French toast. Just know that six is the maximum booking they’ll accept.
If, between the years 2011-2015, you weren’t watching Made In Chelsea, then kudos. You are better people than we are. But if you were, you’ll know all about Bluebird. This King’s Road spot is a geotag come to life. It’s an all-day cafe where you can relax (but be extremely conscious of how you look in your front camera), and there’s also a bar and lounge attached. Jokes aside, it’s a huge space that makes some decent-ish brunch with classics like avo toast and eggs benedict, and is a great spot for big groups.