The LA Brunch Hit List guide image


The LA Brunch Hit List

The best new brunch spots in Los Angeles.

Weekends are a great time for trying new things. Like learning to surf. Or making dumplings. Or finding someone you like, taking a dance lesson together, and going to Griffith Park at sunset to recreate that scene from La La Land. Those all sound fun, but if you’re looking for something a little easier, you could go eat brunch somewhere from our Brunch Hit List. All of the places on this guide recently opened or just started serving brunch, so if you like doing new things but don’t have time for anything too complicated, this is where to start.


photo credit: Layla

Layla Bagels review image

Layla Bagels


1614 Ocean Park Blvd, Santa Monica
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Layla is a welcome addition to LA’s bagel boom (thanks for starting it, Gjusta and Courage). But this Ocean Park bagel shop isn’t just part of a trend, it’s a lovely little counter service spot with great coffee and outrageously delicious bagels piled high with the freshest produce available. And while you can absolutely order crusty-on-the-outside, cushiony-on-the-inside loosies, you’d be missing out if you didn’t try some of the open-face bagel offerings. Toppings range from classics (cream cheese, tomatoes, herbs, smoked salmon, pickled onions) to less typical stuff (lemon zest, chili flakes, PB&J, avocado, hummus). The bagel with seasonal fruit—we got mandarin wedges—plus cream cheese and honey gives us goosebumps just thinking about it.

Getting brunch at Borekas takes some preparation. This kosher takeout window usually sells out of its flaky Israeli pastries by the early afternoon, so it's wise to call and place a phone order when they open at 9am. You might struggle to decide between the spinach and cheese and the fungi, onion, and truffle options, since both are creamy, buttery, brown-edged masterpieces. But whatever you get is going to be the best $12 you've spent in recent memory. This place is mostly a to-go operation, but they have a little front patio where you can sit on a teal crate and tear into your bourekas while they're still hot from the oven.

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The newest Lunasia location in Torrance has already become our favorite dim sum destination in the South Bay. There’s just something great about kicking off your morning with plump pork buns, jumbo pork siu mai, and crispy, crunchy shrimp rolls on their string-lit patio. All of the ordering is done via the QR code at your table, so you won’t find any roving carts here. But the made-to-order dim sum dishes come out so fresh, it’s great this way too. Come with a group after 11am on a weekend, and there will almost certainly be a wait—the space is enormous, though, so you’ll probably be eating within 30 minutes of walking through the doors.

You might already be familiar with this creative Cantonese spot in Silver Lake, but now Needle is serving Hong Kong-inspired brunch dishes from the same 200-square-foot space on Sunset. From the salted egg yolk french toast to honey-glazed pork chop buns, every dish on their short menu is a hit. The restaurant only has about a dozen tables inside and out, and all ordering is done from a tiny QR code at your table, which makes it perfect for when you want a pleasant mid-morning meal with limited human interaction.

photo credit: Nikko Duren

Saffy's Coffee & Tea review image

Saffy's Coffee & Tea



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A sexy dinner with the skewer-slingers at Saffy's is fun, but you should also make your way to their casual bakery and cafe next door for breakfast. On weekends, Saffy’s Coffee and Tea serves a full Arabic breakfast spread and it’s more than worth getting out of bed at a reasonable time to go eat. You’ll get spicy shakshuka, brioche challah, clotted cream with honey, marinated olives, and a chopped salad for $24. They’ve also got buttermilk biscuits with housemade jam, potato curry bourekas, and other flaky pastries you can add on to your feast. Just keep in mind that brunch ends at 3pm and all of the seating is outside on their sidewalk patio, so the likelihood of a cute dog spotting is quite high.

The Lonely Oyster does have some brunch-bait on the menu—like lemon ricotta pancakes and brioche french toast. But overall, this new-ish spot in Echo Park works best for a seafood-focused weekend morning meal. You can post up in a comfy booth or hang out on the pleasant patio sipping mimosas as strangers in designer sweatpants walk their dogs along Echo Park Ave. While it might feel like any other casual neighborhood spot, it's definitely on the nicer end of the brunch spectrum. So if you’re looking to eat wagyu steak and eggs or an extravagant seafood tower with a few mild-mannered friends, make this your brunch move.

Situated in the heart of the Arts District, Cha Cha Cha is one of the better places in town to eat chilaquiles on a rooftop. Their Mexican brunch menu involves dishes like chorizo eggs in purgatory and a sope benedict, but the real draw is the outdoor dining space. You’ll catch glimpses of the Downtown skyline as you walk to your table, and massive palm groves will remind you how badly you need a tropical vacation. From a big group birthday brunch to a solo breakfast at the bar, any occasion at Cha Cha Cha will make you appreciate the fact that you still live in this godforsaken city.

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LA Guide

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Ryla in Hermosa Beach is located a short walk from the pier, which means you can feel the sea breeze while seated on their covered sidewalk patio. Brunch here leans savory, with fantastic dishes like fragrant black truffle fried rice, folded Taiwanese egg crepes, and a crispy katsu sando. That said, you’ll also find a few sweet options like a fluffy Japanese pancake with blueberry compote and a milk tea roll with brown sugar boba and cream cheese frosting. If you’re fine with indoor seating you’ll have no trouble walking in on Sunday morning, but if you want a seat on their sleek patio setup, consider making a reservation.

The lush garden patio at Cobi’s is one of our favorite places to eat outside on the Westside, and it might look even better in the daytime, when the plants and plant sculptures really pop in the sunlight (although the probability of sitting next to French tourists goes up, too). Cobi's brunch menu is similar to what they serve at dinner, with the addition of dishes like Vietnamese-style scotch eggs, Hainanese rice congee, and habanero-brined fried chicken, which are good but didn't blow us away. Luckily the dinner dishes are still fantastic. Come here the time next you need a charming brunch spot with lots of color—just skip the underwhelming coffee and order from the spritz menu instead.

If you’re looking for a special occasion brunch spot in the Arts District, head to the plant-filled patio at Damian. Just like at dinner, this Mexican restaurant works its magic by taking brunch dishes you’ve eaten thousands of times and transforming them into something new. Damian is less crowded during brunch, which means you can usually waltz right in or snag a big group reservation with ease. Their daytime menu is also less expensive, offering a range of pastries like a blue corn concha or a kouign amann stuffed with creamy cajeta. There’s also some entrees that would excite anyone who wants to spend a weekend morning eating standout seafood —load up on everything from the chilaquiles topped with machaca de pescado and scallop aguachile to the fresh crab and tuna tostadas.

The new DTLA location of Pine & Crane is the kind of all-day cafe where you won’t have to deal with long waits or mimosa-fueled brunch crowds. The casual, open-air space feels like a supremely well-appointed artist’s workshop. You can stroll right up to the counter at 8am to order your Taiwanese small plates, and seat yourself in the comfortable dining room or covered patio. After 11am, the brunch menu expands to include more noodle dishes, dumplings, and a full list of cocktails. The only thing that could distract you from the chive and egg pockets, pan-fried pork buns, and daikon rice cakes spread out before you is that brown labradoodle running in the park next to the restaurant. Eating here on a weekend morning would be the perfect wind-up for a day of gallery-hopping or catching up with friends at a nearby brewery.

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