Garden Court Restaurant (credit: Randy Yagi)
One of the great traditions on Easter Sunday is enjoying a delicious brunch with friends and relatives. In San Francisco, many of the most popular restaurants will join in on the springtime celebration, offering special holiday menus or showcasing its favorite dishes. But Easter is also a day when customers don’t want to wait around before being served a sumptuous meal. Now is the time to make brunch reservations for the restaurant of your choice. Here is a look at five of the best places in San Francisco for Easter brunch.
Two New Montgomery St.
San Francisco, CA 94105
One of the most fabulous and certainly one of the most famous places in San Francisco for Easter brunch is the Garden Court Restaurant. Located in the landmark historic Palace Hotel, the Garden Court Restaurant, led by executive chef Jesse Lipitan, has been described as one of the world’s most beautiful public spaces, with its extraordinary stained glass atrium and crystal chandeliers. First opened in 1909, many longtime residents insist there is no better place to be for an elegant Sunday brunch, particularly for Easter. Sample dishes on the current City Brunch menu include tempura fried chicken & Japanese waffle, Maine lobster club sandwich and farmers market salad with its world famous Green Goddess dressing.
399 Grove St.
San Francisco, CA 94102
People looking for a New Orleans-style Easter brunch might want to sample the amazing dishes at the Boxing Room. Located a few blocks from Davies Hall, the Boxing Room is among Gayot’s Top 10 Easter Brunch Restaurants in San Francisco and an important segment of the Absinthe Group, which also includes another notable spot for Easter brunch – Absinthe Brasserie and Bar. Every Sunday, the Boxing Room hosts an acclaimed jazz brunch featuring delicious Cajun and Creole food and a live jazz band. Executive chef Justin Simoneaux will create specially crafted dishes along with other flavorful traditional treats, such as beignets filled with chocolate espresso cream, shrimp remoulade deviled eggs with pickled green tomatoes and basil and smoked chicken with andouille gumbo.
2534 Mission St.
San Francisco, CA 94110
Frequently mentioned as one of the top restaurants in San Francisco, Foreign Cinema will be one of the hottest spots for Easter brunch. Nominated for outstanding restaurant by the prestigious James Beard Foundation, Foreign Cinema is not only known for its superb food, décor and service, but also for screening old movies outside in the courtyard. The popular restaurant located in the Mission District is led by acclaimed chefs Gayle Pirie and John Clark, who also own another widely praised dining establishment in San Francisco – Show Dogs.
The California-Mediterranean-inspired menu changes daily, but delicious dishes served for past weekend brunches include a nice selection of oysters and shellfish, Santa Barbara smoked salmon with truffled farm egg and Petrossian trout caviar, and poached eggs with five spice duck breast and mixed chicories.
888 Howard St.
San Francisco, CA 94103
Located in the InterContinental Hotel San Francisco, Luce is one of the few Michelin-starred restaurants in the city that will be serving brunch on Easter Sunday. Last year, the award-winning restaurant, led by executive chef Daniel Corey, hosted an exquisitely prepared buffet brunch complete with unlimited champagne. Despite its world-class, Michelin-starred distinction for the six consecutive years, Luce is known to offer remarkably affordable dishes. In recent years, Easter brunch was just $39 for adults and $18 for children. Among the exceptional dishes from the current brunch menu are wild local salmon with grilled corn and quinoa, smoked salmon benedict, and brioche French toast with spinach, hollandaise and cucumber fennel. Luce also has an award-winning wine collection of 350 labels and is a consistent recipient of Wine Spectator’s Award of Excellence.
Top of the Mark
999 California St.
San Francisco, CA 94108
Located on the 19th floor of the landmark Mark Hopkins Hotel with sweeping views of the city, the Top of the Mark is one of those San Francisco places that needs to be visited at least once in a lifetime. Easter brunch is a lavish occasion, replete with champagne, an extraordinary buffet presentation, an appearance by the Easter Bunny and live music from local jazz pianist Elias Negash. Current offerings from executive chef Nenad Stefanovic for the Champagne Brunch at the Top include potato and leek soup, beef tenderloin medallions and salmon vera cruz with scallop scampi. A dress code is strictly enforced at this legendary Nob Hill restaurant and staff will not allow shorts or hats inside.
Randy Yagi is a freelance writer covering all things San Francisco. In 2012, he was awarded a Media Fellowship from Stanford University.