3 Ways to Brunch Like You Mean It

A little over a year ago, I wrote about my top 5 brunches in Minneapolis. Before I moved here, I thought of the late-morning weekend meal as more of an American tradition. When I think about the best brunch I've ever had, Park Tavern in San Francisco comes to mind. 

Then I arrived in Lyon and noticed every other restaurant had some variation of le brunch, usually buffet-style, à volonté. There's even a website dedicated to the topic: Où Bruncher? Any recommendations involving unlimited crêpes and patisserie are okay in my book.

Whether you prefer to go out or stay in, or something in between, there's a brunch style for every mood!

1. Get the girls (or guys) together and check out the restaurant du jour. Some of the ladies from my class did just that the other weekend. Finding a French restaurant that can accommodate 15 is a challenge to say the least, but we managed to snag a reservation at Café des Anges. Tucked away on a little street in the 6ième, this cozy spot definitely has a hipster-chic vibe (think mismatched chairs, chandeliers and plaid blanket-covered benches).

Like so many of the brunch offerings in town, the spread includes a mix of sweet (pastries, crêpes) and savory (eggs, sausage). Come hungry because this prix-fixe brunch situation is unlimited. For 24 euros, I'm not sure it was the best value in town, but hey, this place gets style points just for being so effortlessly cool. Friendly service too.

On my list of places to try next: L'instant, Pain & Cie, Laureline's Corner, Chez Thibault...so many brunches, so little time!

2. Stop for a late-morning pastry. For those days when you’re out and about, but don’t want to commit to a sit-down meal, grabbing a flaky pastry from the nearest boulangerie is your answer. Sometimes you can snag a little table as is the case at Au Petit Versailles in Paris (get the chocolatine aux amandes). If the place doesn't have a spot to sit, which is more often than not, look for a sunny spot and spread out. All you have to do is pack a thermos of coffee and you're good to go!

Photo cred: Kara Audette.

Photo cred: Kara Audette.

3. Stay home and make pancakes. That’s right. Sometimes you just need a lazy morning to lounge in your pjs and linger over a cup (or four) of coffee. Faire la grasse matinée as the French like to say. When my sister was here, we were craving pancakes. Okay, maybe it was just me. A few weeks earlier, my friend Anne had given me the cutest little jar of maple syrup and I was dying to use it! So with that and a few bananas from the freezer (but not enough for banana bread), I decided to try this recipe


Ps. Stay tuned for another brunch-related recipe: my take on the gâteau au yaourt. Spoiler alert: I added chocolate. A lot of chocolate.