5 Great Drag Brunches In NYCOur favorite drag brunches in NYC, for when you need some sparkle with your bottomless mimosas.
Have you ever been at brunch and thought, this meal could use a good set of lashes and so much more sparkle? Brunch can be iconic—with our city’s best drag queens in the mix. Here are five of our favorite drag brunches in the city, hosted by local legends and Drag Race alumni alike. Remember to bring cash to tip your queens, they’re working hard! When’s the last time you saw someone do a Broadway number, standup show, and a flawless contour job all before noon?
Misty Mountains is “that bitch”, according to her single “I’m That Bitch”—and we don't disagree. Misty also hosts Snacktime at La Pulperia, one of the city’s most raucous drag brunches. There’s no separate cover charge to watch her sashay up and down the restaurant, just make a reservation for one of the two seatings, and throw your dollar bills around like confetti. The Latin fusion restaurant has one of the better drag brunch menus out there, and most entrees are under $25 with big portions. Drinks are designed to get you howling—and tipping—and you’ll definitely get your money’s worth if you go for either of the bottomless options. You might even end up staying for the official after-party at 4:30pm.
Fresh off their win for Best Drag Brunch at this year’s Glam Awards, Hibiscus and Catrina Lovelace bring the party to Fresco’s Grand Cantina in Astoria every Sunday. Chismosas with Mimosas brings the telenovela to life with high-octane energy and salacious stories. To be near the action, get a seat at the far end of the room, near the giant flower crown of foliage. Instead of the usual tired brunch, this queer-Latino owned restaurant serves up shrimp tacos and carne asada—as well as a carafe of mimosas for $25 and $12 espresso martinis.
Finally, a drag venue with as much style as the divas in it. Peachy Keen is a big, shiny ‘70s themed restaurant where everything is orange creamsicle colored and a loud disco soundtrack bellows out onto the street. It’s the sort of gimmicky Midtown spot that we’d usually avoid, except that the over-the-top aesthetic is perfect for a drag show. The Sunday Getdown Drag Brunch happens twice month at 3pm, and is hosted by the hilarious Hanukah Lewinsky and ultra-chic Julie J. Fair warning—the Southern comfort brunch food here isn’t great, but there’s no food minimum to attend the show, so order something basic like Southern scramble or french toast, and focus on your mimosas instead. The show has no cover or ticket, and it’s a good option for groups without a reservation.
Red Pavilion is a Chinese teahouse by day, a neo-noir fever dream at night, and on the third Sunday of every month, the most entertaining dim sum parlor in town. They serve their dumplings and chicken feet the traditional way, making the rounds with a pushcart of steam baskets. The divas themselves, Shia Ho, Felicia Oh, and Angel Au do drag as alien superstars with some of the best looks in the scene. Sometimes they invite queer Asian icons from around the world, like Corazon from Drag Race Philippines. Dim Sum Divas starts at 3pm, late in the day enough for their vast selection of Chinese teas to erase the rest of your hangover. You’ll need to pre-purchase a $20 ticket online.
You’ll probably spot Ru girls floating around at most drag brunches in the city, but their shows will have the highest production value at Macy’s Drag Brunch in Stella 34 Trattoria Bar. Season 11 performer Shuga Cain hosts, sometimes with guest stars gliding in between white columns at the banquet-hall sized Midtown restaurant. Real fans go hard here, and you should feel free to go to their Gaga, Selena, and Golden Girl-themed events in costume and contour. Aside from the colorful portraits of the queens lining the walls, it’s a totally blank space with food that’s basic and kinda pricey—but they’re quick to refill your bottomless mimosas. Come early to choose your table as there are some seats where your view is partially blocked.