Even though the word ‘brunch’ makes me cringe, it’s still fun to join in with when you’re visiting New York, but you want make sure you get a table and don’t get ripped off. So here are four great places in the West Village I recommend:
1. Café Cluny
This cosy French bistro-inspired restaurant on the corner of West 12th and West 4th streets might be my favourite NYC restaurant – for breakfast, lunch, dinner and brunch. It’s the perfect West Village neighbourhood spot and I’ve never had a bad time here. The food is a mix of American and French – for brunch I love the granola with yogurt and berries. (Insider tip: They don’t take reservations for breakfast/brunch, so turn up around 10am or a little before and you’re guaranteed a table.) Also: keep your eye out for celebrities. We’ve sat next to Emma Stone and Andrew Garfield one time, then Bradley Cooper another!
2. Café Gitane at The Jane
You’ll find this cheap-and-cheerful French/Moroccan-themed restaurant inside The Jane hotel along a quiet leafy street on the edges of the West Village overlooking the Hudson River – which means it’s a great choice for a laid-back brunch away from the weekend crowds (good if you have jet lag). It has a quirky interior with brightly painted walls and high ceilings (think Moroccan riad) and serves delicate sounding food like orange brioche and orange blossom waffle with fruit and maple syrup.
You get to enjoy really simple, inexpensive dishes, including the world’s best French toast – home baked brioche and smoked bacon, yum! – at this postage-stamp-sized restaurant on a tree-lined street in the West Village. You need to be early to get a table, otherwise you wait outside on the pavement; which to be honest is really not a hardship in this beautiful area of New York. (To note: if you’re coming for dinner, this is a BYO restaurant, so come armed with your favourite bottle of wine.)
The owner of the hotel I mostly stay at when I visit NYC raves about this little 24/7 Latin American diner on West 14th Street so I just had to try it out. I’m so glad I did – the food is so tasty and hearty. I wouldn’t usually choose to eat this style food in the morning but it’s delicious and makes you say “Oh my goodness, this is so good” at almost every bite. (Insider tip: Try the two eggs any style with chimicurri home fries, Cuban toast with bacon.)