We understand: You’re beat from traveling and the bed in your decadent hotel room is too comfortable not to sleep late. But you’re in New York City, after all — nestled in between a number of scrumptious eateries that are worth the effort of donning pants and venturing out for some fine fare and a spritz of spirits nestled around Hotel Indigo Lower East Side New York.
Read on to find the best bets for a delectable brunch on Manhattan’s Lower East Side.
Essex, 120 Essex St
This hip and happening place gets packed early, so come when they fling the doors open or risk a lengthy wait. Either way, it’s worth the endeavor. For $26, you get your choice of entrée plus three Bloody Marys, screwdrivers or mimosas. (Want to step it up to bottomless, you saucy devil? They’ll oblige, but for an upcharge.) Among the most raved-about mains are the Mexican matzo brei scramble and the Manchego mac-and-cheese. Opt for the latter and you can add chorizo or lobster for a few bucks more. One note, though: It’s cash only, so come prepared.
Freemans, 1 Freeman Alley, off Rivington, between Chrystie and Bowery
Hidden at the end of its own alley, this delicious gem will have everyone leaving full, well-soused and jolly. To tipple, try the Bloody Maria, which veers from the original recipe by using jalapeño-infused tequila; or the Hunky Dory, a bourbon, orange-chocolate reduction, pineapple and champagne melange. Java aficionados will appreciate the La Colombe offerings, too. For eats, the smoked trout is incredible, as is the baked skillet eggs shakshuka, featuring spinach, feta and tomato-olive sauce. Or keep it simple and get the buttermilk biscuit sandwich, with bacon, egg and cheddar, alongside hash browns. The food tastes so homestyle, please resist the urge to storm the kitchen to see if your mother is inexplicably back there.
Pig and Khao, 68 Clinton St
Perhaps Filipino restaurants aren’t synonymous with brunch, but Pig and Khao will force you to reconsider. First, they have two bottomless booze options: self-serve draft Yuengling brew or mimosas — and both will only set you back $15. After your glass is full, turn to the grub. Try the Sizzling Sisig, a pork head mixed with chili and eggs. Or the Champorado, a chocolate rice pudding melded with crispy bacon bits. With a crew? Order family style and let everyone dig in.
Clinton Street Baking Company, 4 Clinton St
This place is so popular, they recently expanded the restaurant to help diminish the anguishing wait times. The beloved blueberry pancakes top the most coveted menu items, particularly with a heap of maple butter dribbling down the sides. Feeling something savory instead? Try the biscuit sandwich, the Spanish scramble or the steak and eggs. Sides not to overlook include the cheesy grits and the double-smoked bacon. If you’re looking to get your morning jolt of caffeine in a unique delivery, their coffee milkshake is right up your alley. And bring greenbacks; they don’t take plastic here.
Shopsin’s General Store, 120 Essex St
This diner’s moniker is apropos of what will end up on your table: generally, a bit of everything. Tucked in a stall inside the Essex Street Market, Shopsin’s specializes in eclectic fare, offering such wild combinations that work so well, you’ll wonder how they concocted this unique menu. Try the green chile egg sliders, the mac-and-cheese pancake sandwich filled with eggs and crispy bacon, the red velvet and poppy seed pancakes, or the Indian Girl, a sandwich with duck curry and matzah-crusted fried cauliflower. But whatever you decide on — a laborious process given the sheer length of the menu — will be delicious.