Time Out Chicago’s Top Brunch Spots

In partnership with Time Out Chicago – and in anticipation of our TENTH year in Grant Park – we’re showcasing the best of the best of the Windy City. Even better, we’re kicking things off with the top brunches around Chi-town in honor of the long holiday weekend. What are you waiting for? Get out and get brunching!

From brunches to bars and beaches, we’ll be bringing you more of Time Out Chicago’s local recs each week, so stay tuned!

Chicago is arguably the best culinary city in the country, so it’s no surprise the Windy City makes brunch an art form. These top five brunches will help you gear up for hours of dancing and cavorting (or help you recover from the night before) with outlandishly garnished Bloody Marys, cinnamon rolls and thick, juicy bacon.

1. Au Cheval

This diner serves one of the most perfect hangover brunches around, though you’ll have to wait for it. But this is one case where the wait is worth it: The chilaquiles, also available after midnight every day, comes in two sizes: huge and massive. Pour warm tomatillo salsa from a gravy boat over the tower of tortilla chips, guacamole and pickled onions and eat away your hangover. The English breakfast updates the classic with lush, velvety scrambled eggs, huge slices of Texas toast and a dish of bacon-laced beans. Drink the creamy, nutmeg-laden Antica flip or a Bloody Mary capped with pickled onions, and you’ll forget this place is best known for its burger. (Though don’t worry—that’s still available at brunch.)

2. Avec

This West Loop spot is known for its bacon-wrapped dates, but at brunch there are other standouts: the breakfast pizza, a potato, pancetta and egg–topped pie that fills your table; the flaky cinnamon roll; and the genius play on eggs benedict: nduja smeared on toast and topped with poached eggs and lemony hollandaise. The drinks are great, too: Le Chet Noir, a bourbon, vanilla and chilled coffee cocktail, is like drinking the most delicious iced latte imaginable.

3. Dusek’s Board & Beer

Don’t want to wait? This Pilsen spot is your best bet. There was zero wait time on a recent visit, and within minutes we were sucking down Brunch Punch, a light, gin-based morning concoction. A few minutes later, there was a sweet challah cinnamon roll, then a pear-stuffed Dutch baby, plump fried oysters and potato hash, and a lemon buttermilk doughnut.

4. Longman & Eagle

Long wait? No worries. Head to Longman’s OSB, the Off-Site Bar in back, which has a Saturday sausage shop and Sunday doughnut shop. You can wait for seats and your order of chicken and perfectly crisp waffles or eggs with a side of PBR while drinking a Bloody Mary and eating a bratwurst topped with fried clams. Don’t worry, it’s not too much food. This is brunch, after all.

5. The Publican

The Publican’s menu is filled with outstanding examples of classic dishes. There’s an omelette, wrapped around smoked sablefish and served with a huge dollop of crème fraiche and a pile of salty fish roe; thick, maple-syrup braised bacon; and a wedge of cinnamon streusel coffee cake. Then there are more inventive dishes, like a blood sausage link split over kimchi fried rice and crowned with a fried egg. The house Bloody Mary, packed with pickles, comes with a choice of beer back, and we also love the $5 Brunch Box, made with Montenegro, beer and grapefruit juice and sized so you can have two.

Hungry for more? Check out the rest of Time Out Chicago’s list of the 20 best brunches in the city.