No matter how good of a cook you’ve become over the past year, eating brunch at home just doesn’t feel the same as it does on a sun-lit restaurant patio. For one, hollandaise is actually a major pain in the ass to make, and secondly, bottomless mimosas aren’t quite as exciting when you’re drinking them out of your old roommate’s Warped Tour mug. Needless to say, you might be craving brunch outside right now. From a two-story beer hall on the ocean to a century-old saloon in the Santa Monica Mountains, here are 18 great spots for an outdoor brunch extravaganza.
Republique doesn’t need an introduction, but in case you’re new to town or have completely forgotten what the world looks like outside your apartment, this upscale French spot on La Brea is one of LA’s most recognizable restaurants. And despite its popularity, the food is still fantastic. Plus, thanks to a large new patio in the parking lot, you won’t have to fight over a tiny handful of sidewalk tables during brunch for shakshuka, kimchi fried rice, and whatever baked goods catch your eye. They’re only accepting walk-ins for brunch.
Hidden amongst dense vegetation in the Santa Monica Mountains, Inn Of The Seventh Ray isn’t where you go to get rowdy on bellinis and scream about the Duke of Hastings. It’s where you go to get the hell out of LA for the day, snack on dishes like duck bacon omelettes and quiche, and strategize how you can live amongst these sprawling, leafy patios for good. Reservations are definitely a good idea.
Open for brunch every weekend from 10am-2:30pm, Manuela is a Southern-ish spot inside an actual gallery in the Arts District. Whatever white-walled environment you might be picturing is the complete opposite of Manuela’s charming courtyard space - it looks more like a tiny European town than a converted Downtown warehouse. As far as the food goes, no brunch is complete here with an order of the cream biscuits with apple butter jam, but we also love the shrimp and grits, popover benedict, and barbequed oysters.
Located on a quiet stretch of Long Beach not too far from downtown, Ellie’s is a quintessential neighborhood spot with a big front patio, a friendly staff, and excellent Southern Italian food. Come brunch, we recommend the eggplant sandwich with burrata and pesto, and their excellent short rib hash with pickled peppers, salsa macha, and hollandaise. Reservations are encouraged, as seating is limited.
Home to the world-famous Drag Brunch, Hamburger Mary’s in West Hollywood has taken over an adjacent parking lot complete with astroturf, plenty of shade (both kinds, henny), and yes, a lot of drag queens. Even though you don’t come here for the food, you’re going to need something to soak up those mimosas. And their menu filled with waffles, pancakes, and the egg white and turkey-filled “Circuit Boy” wrap will certainly do the trick. Reservations are a must.
Yes, even during a pandemic this seminal Venice spot still manages to be a complete scene. But if you’re good with dining amongst a crowd, you’ll enjoy a meal with good food on one of the most idyllic patios on the Westside. Another bonus is that Gjelina’s menu is so large it’s only a few dishes short of being considered an encyclopedia - an ideal situation if you’re with those friends who never know what they want to eat. Prioritize the crispy eggs with prosciutto and any of the wood-fired, perfectly-charred pizzas.
At Superba, brunch doesn’t ever feel like a stress-induced weekend production. The expanded outdoor area is huge, so you rarely have to wait long for a table, and it has that I’m-in-no-rush feeling you might crave on a sleepy Saturday morning. The menu is full of classics with a twist, like the excellent marbled eggs, or the breakfast sandwich with fried eggs and crispy potatoes. You’ll also want to get a big plate of daily-rotating pastries to share, and maybe one of the fried chicken sandwiches too. Reservations here.
Considering that bars are still closed for the foreseeable future, the brunch date is something people are probably relying on a bit more these days. And AOC is a great option for that. You’re both feeling fresh, the mimosas are flowing, and being on the rustic, ivy-covered patio with brick fireplaces and Juliet balconies feels like you’re on a date on a French provincial farm. Add in good food like Dungeness crab omelettes and their famous Spanish fried chicken, and this might become the only kind of brunch you want to be seen at these days.
Angelini Alimentari is one of the most consistently overlooked brunch spots in LA - the atmosphere is calm and casual, and they always have a table available. While weekend warriors flock to other mimosa-drenched patios dotted around Beverly Grove, this day-time Italian cafe on Beverly Blvd. features a tight menu filled with excellent dishes like ricotta pancakes and guanciale frittatas, as well as a scrambled egg dish with white truffles for a not-so-casual $95.
This small breakfast standby in Silver Lake might look like your average Eastside cafe, but the food is seriously good - especially the “Devil’s Mess,” a giant plate of three spicy scrambled eggs, cajun turkey sausage, cheddar cheese, sour cream, guacamole, and salsa. It’s a lot of food, but also exactly what you need after “accidentally” finishing that second bottle of wine last night.
Lady Byrd Cafe
LA has seen no shortage of impressive new patios since the start of the pandemic, but few can compare to the one at Lady Byrd. This neighborhood cafe in Echo Park has placed miniature, plant-filled greenhouses around each table, ensuring minimal exposure to other diners and staff and maximum English garden aesthetics. Couple that with an all-day menu that includes sandwiches, pasta, and pastries, and Lady Byrd has quickly become one of the best outdoor brunch spots on the Eastside.
Last year, Nueva inherited one of the best brunch patios in Venice (from the now-closed Sunny Spot), and has kept the weekend energy going ever since. This spot has a wide-ranging menu featuring dishes like huevos rancheros shakshuka, a chorizo-filled breakfast burrito, and four different kinds of ceviche. If you’re here to get your midday buzz on, there’s a whole breakfast cocktail menu, including $20 mimosa kits that come with an entire bottle of sparkling wine. Reservations encouraged.
Thanks to a brand new patio in their adjacent parking lot, La Boheme has quickly transformed itself from a sleepy neighborhood French spot to a West Hollywood brunch powerhouse. The patio itself has all the essentials - astroturf, umbrellas, and plenty of foliage - plus big, plush-y lounge chairs that give the whole place a fun “somebody emptied their attic again” aesthetic. Add in a solid menu filled with croque madames, red curry mussels, and $23 mimosas, and you can start to see why you should make a reservation beforehand.
Even though Fishing With Dynamite hasn’t brought back their official brunch menu yet, they are still open on the weekends starting at noon with their regular menu that features some of our favorite seafood in the South Bay. From raw Peruvian scallops marinated in citrus to blue crab rolls and a key lime pie that’ll make native Floridians jealous, FWD makes exactly what you want to eat while lounging in the sun on a lazy Sunday afternoon. Reservations are a must.
Since everybody’s had their vacations on hold since last year, you might be itching for literally any kind of change in scenery. If that’s the case, The Old Place is a fantastic brunch option. Being in this historic saloon in the Santa Monica Mountains (it used to be the area’s post office circa 1800s) feels like you haven’t just left LA, but you’ve left this current dimension. We recommend leaving yourself some extra time to explore the surrounding shops before your meal and then head over to the takeout window, order up some homemade cinnamon rolls and grilled steak sandwiches, and hang out anywhere you want on the property.
If you want a low-key place to catch up with a friend you haven’t seen in forever, which is every friend these days, check out Loupiotte Kitchen. This tiny French cafe in Los Feliz spot is an ideal place to spend the morning chatting about how wild the last year has been, drinking French wine, and watching Eastsiders walk their dogs while hungover. Make sure you have a macchiato before you start in on the wine list - their espresso drinks are tremendous. From there, split some pastries and the cheese and charcuterie board, and then order the spinach-and-gruyere omelette all for yourself. Call (323) 445-2738 ahead of time to book a table.
We know you’ve been wondering where you can go this weekend to drink strawberry spritzes while watching trains go by. OK, maybe that’s just us, but Margot is still a great place to hang out for brunch. This Culver City rooftop spot at Platform is at eye level with the elevated Culver Metro station, and has a solid menu filled with things like oatmeal pancakes and a black truffle soft scramble, along with an array of vegan options as well. Reserve your table here.
What makes My Two Cents an ideal place to sit outside on a sidewalk and eat brunch is that they serve LA’s best shrimp and grits. The buttery shrimp sit in a bath of Creole beurre monté, all over creamy corn parmesan grits. You should also get the grilled pork chop stuffed with plantains, and if you’re really hungry, the turkey meatloaf sandwich, too. Wash it down with some of their iced tea, and top the meal off with whichever one of their baked goods has just come out of the oven. Seating is first come, first serve.
L’Antica Pizzeria da Michele
While we’d come here just for the excellent Neapolitan pizza (the place has been cranking out pies in their original Naples, Italy location since 1870), the incredible back patio is the reason we’ll stay and hang out all afternoon. With red brick walls, a full fireplace, and enough trees to qualify as a miniature forest, this sprawling space has all the features you want in a great patio.
Bacari is a local mini-chain known for its excellent drink deals and solid small plates. But this location is special because of its patio, tucked away from the blow-dry bars and cupcake shops on West 3rd Street. Walking in feels like you’ve entered a portal into a European forest with trees growing every which way, and giant lanterns hanging from the ceiling. This all adds to the feeling that you’ve stumbled into a big-budget production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream, except you’re going to find brunch dishes like chorizo potato hash and $25 bottomless mimosas instead of oversized fairies.
Another vegetarian option on Abbot Kinney kind of feels like overkill, but there’s always room for one more when you have a back patio like the one at Plant. The heavily-forested space works for pretty much any daytime occasion, and with a solid menu filled with dishes like kimchi scramble to caio e pepe with kelp noodles, eating a meal here is basically like dining in the meatless Ferngully of your dreams.
Rappahonnock is a fantastic oyster and seafood bar in the Row DTLA development. The massive complex, that used to be the old American Apparel factories, has more outdoor space than it knows what to do with. This all-day restaurant has the best location in the whole place - it’s right at the main entrance, with an unobstructed view of a giant tree that looks like it came from the set of Avatar. Rappahannock makes you feel like you’re eating brunch on a studio backlot, not in the middle of Downtown.
It’s baffling that there aren’t more rooftop restaurants in Hollywood, and that’s a fact that Mama Shelter continues to cash in on. The boutique hotel has a rooftop situation with a solid menu including brioche French toast, bagel and lox, and cinematic-themed cocktails, not to mention 360-degree views of the neighborhood. They still don’t accept reservations, so we’d recommend getting there early.
Idle Hour remains the best spot to grab a drink in the Valley. That said, this bar-inside-a-giant-barrel also does a good weekend brunch that doesn’t get too busy. An order of biscuits and cheesy breakfast grits is exactly what you need after a night of Costco margaritas. Plus, the back patio is shaded and there’s a $16 bottomless mimosas deal, too.
It’s not every day in a pandemic you’re going to be able to convince yourself (or anyone else) to drive up into the Burbank hills for a fancy brunch. But when it involves The Castaway, you should consider making it happen. The recently redone menu has tons of options ranging from short rib benedict to double smashburgers to an entire raw bar. They also have $22 bottomless mimosas guaranteed to make the already fantastic views of the SFV even better.
We don’t have the building plans to back this up, but Ballast Point has maybe the biggest patio in LA County. They’ve got three huge spaces over two floors which is more than enough room to spread out, drink beer, and gaze out over Alamitos Bay. The food might be what you’d expect to find on a brewery’s menu - burgers, fish tacos, and flatbreads. But everything is solid and once you lay eyes on the Pacific Ocean off in the distance, you’ll probably forget what you ordered anyway. Definitely snag a reservation beforehand.