Hello, I’m Joanna and I am a girl who loves brunch.
In fact, I would go so far as to say that brunch is one of my favourite activities in life. If there’s a heaven, for me it would probably involve a bright airy room, a giant stack of pancakes with as many variations of eggs, fruit, juices and smoothies as possible, a jugful of Bloody Mary, and a never-ending supply of Canadian streaky bacon and maple syrup. Throw in a plate of mashed avocado on sourdough toast and you have perfection. *Ok, I should probably make myself a snack before I write the rest of this post… I advise you do the same*…
I guess this idea of a blowout mimosa-fuelled bunch first originated from North America (thanks guys!), but it’s definitely crossed over to the UK and is now a fully-embraced part of social culture. France, on the other hand, hasn’t quite caught up yet. They’re still all about their ‘croissant et un café’, which don’t get me wrong, is delicious, but doesn’t quite hit the spot on a Sunday morning. A few brunch hot-spots have popped up over Paris, but they’re often expensive and very very busy. Expect a long wait and a fairly big sting to your wallet. They also haven’t quite embraced the whole ‘cocktails and Bellini’s with breakfast’ thing (come on guys, get it together!), and a cup of regular builder’s tea is about as rare as a polite Parisian waiter.
I have found a few gems in my time here though, which if you’re visiting and can’t bear to look at another pain au chocolate, I definitely recommend you check out. Here are my top 3, as well as info on where to find them (and what to order…).
3. Pancake Sisters, Rue Lucien Sampaix
We actually stumbled across Pancake Sisters by accident after being rejected from our top choice (more on that later…). Thankfully, it turned out to be a great find, serving up a varied and delicious menu for a very reasonable price. For €23.50 between 11am and 3.30pm on a weekend, you can get yourself a seriously decent brunch menu. Starting with a glass of fresh orange juice and a hot beverage of your choice, you then get served an amazing plate of savoury pancakes with eggs, side salad, a smoothie bowl, and the ‘topping du jour’, (I went for smoked salmon and cream cheese of course…). Finally, just when you think your jeans won’t stretch any further, they then place a stack of sweet chocolate chip pancakes in front of you, alongside some fruit and a jug of syrup. De-lish!
This is such a cute, character-filled little place, decked out with mismatched chairs and instagram-worthy lighting. The perfect place to meet your girlfriends for a Sunday morning catch up.
2. Eggs and Co., Rue Bernard Palissy
Eggs and Co. is another place I was swept into by a couple of friends after a particularly rainy morning in Paris, so apologies that I don’t have any of my own pictures to share with you! I’m sure you can tell from the name that this is an egg-lovers dream with a ton of different variations to choose from, along with an abundant selection of traditional and interesting sides.
What I loved most about this place was how cute and cramped it was. Expect to be squeezed into a small table which quickly fills up with all the delicious food you’re bound to order. If you like personal space, this probably isn’t the place for you! However, I just love how cosy it feels and I think it would be perfect on a cold, frosty winter morning.
1. Holybelly, Rue Lucien Sampaix
Now Holybelly was actually the place we were cordially turned away from before discovering Pancake Sisters due to there being a waiting time of an hour and 45 minutes. Of course, this only made us want to come back more if only to see what all the fuss was about…
Well after finally managing to get a table last weekend, I can tell you that it is thoroughly worth the wait. Based on a Melbourne Australia style breakfast, this place does brunch how it was meant. to. be. Eggs served how you like with a choice of delicious sides, such as fennel sausage patty, ricotta and dukkah, or a homemade hash brown. Fresh juice and a range of teas, coffees and cocktails (I recommend the iced latte), or a big bowl of speciality granola topped with a soul-soothing mix of honey, yoghurt and fresh fruit… you know, if you’re feeling healthy…
The real star of the show though, if you’re feeling particularly un-healthy comes in the form of the Savoury Stack of pancakes. Oh sweet moses, just thinking about these bad boys makes me salivate… Huge fluffy pancakes, piled high with streaky bacon and perfectly fried eggs, topped off with lashings of bourbon butter and maple syrup… I mean just look at them for christ’s sake! This may be a bold claim, but I think this was possibly one of the most indulgent and delicious brunches I have ever had the pleasure of eating.
As Holybelly doesn’t take reservations (or tables of more than 5 people), be prepared for a long wait most days. On average, I would say just over an hour. However, you are free to put your name down and disappear off, so I would recommend heading down to Canal Saint Martin for a wander – a lovely area of Paris just a short 10 minute walk away. Take a stroll, admire the surroundings, and build up your appetite so you can really devour those pancakes. Trust me, you’ll need it.
Well I hope I haven’t made you too hungry with this post… Let me know in the comments where your favourite brunch spots are, whether in Paris, London, or anywhere really! You’d be surprised how far I’ll travel for a good breakfast…
Thanks for reading, Joanna xxx