Most people spend hours, even days, preparing a memorable Easter Sunday meal. After all, Easter’s a serious religious and food holiday with traditions, like roasted lamb, ham, and hot-cross buns. Though it’s fun to host friends or feed your family, sometimes you just don’t feel like spending hours in the kitchen while everyone else is hunting for eggs. It just happens to be a great holiday to bypass the kitchen and make a reservation. Even if you don’t celebrate Easter, you’d be wise to seize the marvelous, Easter brunch options around the city. Manhattan’s got plenty of great brunch spots to start and they all up the ante for this holiday with everything from sweetbreads with baked eggs at Michael White’s Osteria Morini, wood fire-roasted lamb at Peasant, or poached eggs with fontina sausage buns and hollandaise at The Little Owl.
Address: 218 Lafayette St., between Spring and Broome streets
Phone: (212) 965-8777
The only downfall to brunch at this casual, Kenmare spot is that it could potentially ruin all other brunches. Plain old pancakes and scrambled eggs pale in comparison to Michael White’s hand-crafted pastas, which include braised beef ravioli and ribbon noodles with mushrooms. For an unforgettable Easter feast, you can gorge yourself silly on braised trotters, sweetbreads with baked eggs, and a pancetta and gorgonzola scone for dessert. If that’s not your guy, there’s also homemade muffins, grilled skirt steak with fried eggs or two eggs up with mortadella and truffled cream spinach.
The Little Owl
Address: 90 Bedford St., at Grove Street
Phone: (212) 741-4695
What looks like your average neighborhood restaurant offers some seriously ambitious cooking. In fact, The Little Owl is one of Martha Stewart’s favorites and one of ours. For brunch, the menu features a spicy chicken breast with brussel sprout homefries, a cheddar leek omelet, and whole wheat pancakes. It really wouldn’t be The Little Owl without Joey Campanaro’s signature, meatball sliders slathered with gravy.
Address: 20 E. 76th St., near Madison Avenue
Phone: (212) 772-2600
Daniel Boulud is a perfectionist in the kitchen as well as the dining room. If you want to impress your family or your
significant other’s family, you might want to secure a reservation at this Upper East Side gem. Café Boulud is a favorite with diners
craving something a little less formal than Daniel, but more upscale than Bowery sausage spot, DBGB. The charmed cafe is perpetually
packed at brunch, thanks to outstanding dishes, like a smoked salmon tarte, wild mushroom agnolotti and peekytoe crab benedict. And this Easter, we’re sure Chef Gavin Kaysen will pull out all the stops with his $79 prix-fixe, three-course brunch with a killer bread basket to boot.
Address: 170 Thompson St., between West Houston & Bleecker Sts.
Phone: (212) 982-5089
Lupa may not be Mario Batali’s largest or most ambitious restaurant, but it remains one of the best Italian joints in the city. The dining room looks like a Roman trattoria with a Roman-bent menu to match. Even better, the menu has something for everyone, which isn’t an easy when you’re trying please every family member. On Easter Sunday, Lupa is offering a four-course prix-fixe menu with a traditional antipasti plate, homemade gnocchi and the traditional roast lamb. In Mario’s hands, that’s a delicious thing.
Address: 194 Elizabeth St # A
Phone: (212) 965-9511
There’s a lot to love about this SoHo Italian eatery, but the most compelling is a wood-fired oven that you can admire from the dining room. This spot is great for anything from a date to girl’s night out and Easter brunch. For Easter brunch, we recommend starting with one of their wood-fired pizza, like the Bianca topped with mortadella or another topped with speck and arugula. There’s sardines, cuttlefish with cherry tomatoes, lasagna in a tomato and goat ragu. And it wouldn’t be Easter without a spit-fired leg of lamb, served with polenta.
Address: 40 Central Park South,. btwn. 5th & 6th Aves.
Phone: (212) 826-5959
Sarabeth’s is practically synonymous with breakfast. It’s famous for its homemade scones, tried-and-true English muffins and award winning jams. So it stands to reason that Sarabeth’s is a pretty good bet for Easter brunch, too. This year, they’re offering an Easter buffet at all three New York locations with a bunny petting zoo. To eat, chances are they’ll be honey-baked Virginia ham.
Address: 54 East 1st St., between First & Second Aves.
Phone: (212) 677-6221
In her best-selling memoir, Gabrielle Hamilton describes just how crazy Prune’s kitchen can get during brunch service, but you would never know it from tasting such thoughtful, dazzlingly executed food. The homey, warm vibe and ingenious comfort food creations make this East Village spot a very attractive brunch option. The menu features everything from huevos rancheros to an outstanding spaghetti carbonara and some killer Bloody Mary’s.
Bell Book & Candle
Address: 141 W. 10th St., btwn. Sixth & Seventh Avenues
Phone: (212) 414-2355
Talk about an efficient farm-to-table concept: This newly opened, West Village bistro boasts a rooftop garden that supplies produce for many of the dishes on the menu. And one of the most enjoyable ways to sample these locavore-friendly vegetables is by taking advantage of Bell Book & Candle’s Easter tasting menu. Appetizers include wild mushrooms with ramps and burrata with wilted grape tomatoes, both served family-style, but each diner gets their own leg of lamb, which comes from seasonal vegetables, grown right upstairs.
Hill Country Barbecue Market
Address: 30 W. 26th St. btwn. Sixth Avenue & Broadway
Phone: (212) 255-4544
One of our favorite NYC barbecue joints, Hill Country will be offering a finger lickin’ barbecue Easter feast with a “Feed Yer Family” special. For just $20, you’ll get a meat market sampler platter of brisket, ribs, a quarter chicken, two sides and dessert. is also running two lamb specials, and if you’re not too full after this marathon of eats, you can join in Hill Country’s Easter egg hunt.
I Trulli Ristorante
Address: 122 E. 27th St.
Phone: (212) 481-7372
If you’ve recovered from your gluttonous Easter feast by Monday morning, consider heading to this Gramercy favorite to celebrate Pasquetta. The Italian holiday translates as “little Easter,” a picnic celebration that makes use of leftover Easter grub. While Italians usually take their leftovers to the countryside or beach, I Trulli will be offering a picnic-style buffet in their garden. The restaurant, which specializes in cuisine from the Apulia region of Italy, is serving roast lamb, sausages, zucchini blossoms, and much more.
Address: 80 Berry St. near Ninth Street (Brooklyn)
Phone: (718) 387-0711
The Easter brunch at this Williamsburg spot faithfully adheres to the restaurant’s rather unique fusion of Italian and Latin cooking, which work surprisingly well together here. If you choose to order off Miranda’s regular, a la carte menu, we suggest the crazy creamy polenta with poached eggs or the chipotle-braised chicken sandwich. But if you’re really looking to get into the holiday spirit, opt for the holiday’s specials, which are baked ham and homemade breakfast breads.