New York Magazine


10 Modern Cakes
11 Dream Centerpieces
Lovely Invitations
Details for Your Day
Great Reception Sites
A Wedding at Home
Creative Appetizers
Four Foodie Weddings
Chefs' Catering Tips
Learning to Dance
Choosing the Music
Ideas for Guests
Unique Ceremony Tips
Nontraditional Couples
Best Wedding Websites
Avoiding Wedding Stress
Hiring a Planner
After the Party: Cleanup

Before & After Parties
Working With Caterers
Catering Your Way
Selecting a Cake
Alternatives to Cakes
Choosing the Flowers
Alternatives to Flowers
Picking Your Stationery
Dance Lesson Rules
Choosing Your Dance
Hiring a Band
Alternative Music Choices
Ceremony Rituals
Hiring a Videoagrapher
Photography: The Basics
Getting the License
Finding an Officiant

Stationery Shops
Reception Venues
Dance Lessons
Rehearsal Dinner Picks

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Related Features
Rehearsal Dinner Restaurants
Caterer Directory
Restaurants for Sunday Brunch

The Brasserie is a mod spot for an urban brunch.

American Park at the Battery
Inside Battery, across from 17 State St.
It’s hard to top the killer views of the New York Harbor at this lofty waterfront restaurant, whose rental spaces range from the Martini Lounge, which accommodates 25 guests, to the Harbor View Room, which seats 165 and has an adjoining dance floor. The restaurant also offers several outdoor terrace and garden areas. Their brunch, complete with pasta, bakery, omelette, salad, and carving stations, ranges from $50 to $80 per person.

Baraonda Restaurant
1439 Second Ave., at 75th St.
French doors allow you to spill out onto the sidewalk of this cheery restaurant with sunset-colored walls, murals, and terra-cotta floors. A minimum of 40 people can take over the 80-seat restaurant for $35 per person, which buys a choice of appetizers—including pan-seared calamari and artichokes or tuna carpaccio—and entrées like oven-roasted orata or baby chicken with roasted potato and sautéed eggplant.

100 E. 53rd St., at Park Ave.
Thanks to a sleek redesign by cutting-edge architects Diller + Scofidio a few years back, this midtown mainstay in the Seagram building is a good bet for the urban couple’s post-wedding brunch. Fill their mod white chairs with up to 160 guests; the side room offers an additional 60 seats. The Park Avenue Breakfast Buffet ($44 per guest) includes dishes from smoked salmon to eggs with applewood bacon. Or you can create your own à la carte menu. The cost varies with season and day of the week.

For a swank post-wedding brunch, treat your guests to Brasserie 8 1/2.

Brasserie 8 1/2
9 W. 57th St., near Fifth Ave.
212-829-9577, ext. 204
The cavernous stained-glass space of this trendy upscale bistro will accommodate a group of almost any size. The main room, flanked by a grand, sweeping staircase and an original Leger mural, seats 250; the private room seats 75; and the lounge another 75. You can rent just one space or all three. For $24 each, your guests can enjoy offerings from chorizo omelettes to old-fashioned French toast as well as buffet items like Krispy Kreme doughnuts, or plan your own menu with the restaurant (prices increase accordingly).

142 Mercer St., at Prince St.
You’ll get points for your hip Soho choice: this sub-street-level American brasserie designed by edgy modernist Marc Newson has orange cantilever chairs and is a stone’s throw from the new Prada store. A $25 brunch menu includes muffins, fruit, your choice of tuna tartare or beet-and-goat-cheese napoleon, and eggs Benedict or roasted salmon with chopped salad. For $55, they’ll throw in champagne, Bellinis, and Bloody Marys as well as luxe selections like seared tuna steak with a chopped-vegetable salad, and spinach-and-artichoke ravioli. The private room holds 35; the semi-private back section, 60.

Capsouto Frères
451 Washington St.
There is no private room at this charming Tribeca spot located on a quiet cobblestone street, but a raised platform accommodates semi-private parties of up to 35, and you can rent the whole place with 85 to 105 people. Brunch is a deal at $21 per person. Start with terrine provençal; move on to eggs Benedict or salad niçoise, raisin-brioche French toast, or a ratatouille omelette. Finish with baked Alaska, chocolate-mousse cake, or fresh-fruit crêpes.

208 W. 70th St.
This sleek Upper West Side spot has a glass-enclosed private room big enough for 40 and is a good value at $40 to $50 per person. You’ll get a choice of a Bloody Mary, mimosa, or champagne cocktail, along with oysters on the half-shell, potato-leek soup, or goat-cheese ravioli, followed by an entrée: brioche French toast, poached-chicken salad, omelette, or lamb burger on focaccia. Lemongrass panna cotta with pineapple-grape salad rounds out the meal.

Four Seasons Hotel
57 E. 57th St.
Blond wood walls and backlit marble paneling set a sophisticated mood for brunch in the contemporary Art Deco Cosmopolitan Suite. Fifty to 150 can feast on cold hors d’oeuvre followed by a buffet with brunch classics like fruit and berries, challah French toast with warm pear compote, scrambled eggs with applewood-smoked bacon, and Irish smoked salmon. The price is $125 per person, plus the bar tab.

409 E. 59th St.
Named for the Italian who designed the arched, white-tiled ceiling of this soaring space under the 59th Street Bridge, and run by the stylish British restaurateur Terence Conran, this bi-level restaurant can accommodate from 20 to 800 people. You can choose from brunch specialties like Cobb salad, tuna tartare, and eggs baked in a brick oven with sausage and artichoke for $40; hosting a party in a private room will run you a little more. For dessert, try the warm chocolate cake.

JUdson Grill
152 W. 52nd St.
With its 40-foot ceilings and large mirrors in dark wooden frames, this imposing midtown restaurant is sure to impress. Smoked-sable-and-dill crêpes, duck-sausage-and-potato frittata, and brioche French toast are just a few of the options on the $100-per-person private brunch menu, which includes an open bar as well as passed hors d’oeuvre, petits fours, and handmade chocolates. The private room holds from 40 to 150 guests.

La Belle Epoque
827 Broadway, near 12th St.
Touches like a hand-painted tile floor and original Paris Métro signs give this turn-of-the-last-century-style ballroom a hefty dose of atmosphere. To get the whole place for brunch, you’ll need at least 70 guests (the room holds up to 140). On Saturdays, 50 will suffice. The menu includes New Orleans beignets, Italian-peasant-bread French toast, and omelettes made to order with your choice of ten or more fillings. The $100 meal comes with one cocktail per person.

Park Avenue Café
110 E. 63rd St., near Park Ave.
212-644-1900 or 212-360-0438
The townhouse adjacent to the Park Avenue Café, with pale-yellow walls and deep-green carpeting, beamed ceilings, and Americana artwork, holds 20 to 50 guests for a private, $75-per-person brunch. Options include steamed lobster dumplings with vegetables, filet mignon with eggs, and sautéed sea scallops.

The Plaza Hotel
768 Fifth Ave., at 59th St.
There’s something quintessentially “New York wedding” about the Plaza, and brunch in one of the many banquet rooms, some with views of Central Park, isn’t as expensive as you might expect. For $85 a head, you’ll get fruit, pastries, smoked Norwegian salmon, an array of omelettes, French toast, sausages, bacon, and hashed-browns. For $10 more, the selection expands to include poached-salmon medallions, chicken with Dijon sauce, and penne with roasted-eggplant-and-sun-dried-tomato-cream sauce. Private rooms hold from 10 to 600 guests.

161 W. 23rd St., near Sixth Ave.
This trendy nightspot, designed by the people behind BondSt, Republic, and Cafeteria, is outfitted with comfy suede banquettes and curtained beds (for lounging), plus a 60-foot stone bar. The bi-level space can accommodate up to 250 guests, and you can use the in-house caterer to plan your brunch, or hire your own. Pricing and availability vary according to date and time (renting out the entire space for the afternoon ranges from $300 to $3,000 depending on the time of year; catering runs $15–$40 per person).

Sushi Samba 7
87 Seventh Ave. So., at Barrow St.
The foliage-filled open-air roof of this lively Latin-Asian fusion spot, which overlooks Seventh Avenue South, accommodates from 30 to 75 guests and is enclosed during the cooler months. For $30 each, guests get fresh-squeezed orange juice and one of several unique entrées, like bagels with smoked salmon, smoked eel, Catupiry cheese, wakame, and caperberries or French toast with foie gras butter, fresh mango, red-onion-fig chutney, and banana tempura. For an extra $50 a person, you can have unlimited brunch cocktails.

Tribeca Grill
375 Greenwich St.
Your guests will feel like they’re in a downtown artist’s loft thanks to exposed brick, dark wood, and a wall of large windows. The Grill’s private room seats 35 to 130 guests, and for $39 to $89 per person, they’ll serve up a buffet with choices like banana-stuffed French toast with fresh berries and broiled salmon with niçoise potato salad and tomato-artichoke vinaigrette. For an extra $375, you can rent the private screening room upstairs and show the wedding video to guests after brunch.

49 W. 44th St., in the Iroquois Hotel
A curved marble bar, walnut floors, velvet curtains, and a domed ceiling make this intimate room a little jewel box, which you can take over with 15 to 45 people. Deviled quail eggs with Osetra caviar, sweet-cheese-stuffed French toast with pure maple syrup, and Moroccan shrimp salad with mango chutney are some of the unusual entrées on Triomphe’s $40 two-course menu, which includes nonalcoholic beverages. Add $15 for cocktails.

Water Club
The East River at 30th St.
Sitting on the edge of the East River, this yacht-club-themed, glass-enclosed private room holds up to 50 people and offers a prime view of the water; a larger room can accommodate 200. Your buffet-style brunch might include a carving station with fillet of beef with bordelaise sauce and smoked fish. You’ll also get Danish, made-to-order omelettes, pasta, and grilled vegetables; it’s $125 per person, including drinks.

Photos by Kenneth Chen.