All images via @brunchboys, unless otherwise noted
If you have to choose one meal to eat in Melbourne, make it brunch. The city has earned a reputation as the brunch capital of Australia, if not the world. After all, they are the ones who hooked us on everything from flat whites to avocado toast.
Here to teach us how to do brunch right in Melbourne is pro-bruncher and blogger Jeremy Jacobowitz. Jacobowitz is the brain behind lifestyle brand The Brunch Boys, which features everything from guides on NYC's best bagels to hunger-inducing shots of pancakes drowning in maple syrup.
Journy co-founder Leiti Hsu caught up with Jacobowitz during the 2017 World's 50 Best Restaurants awards in Melbourne to find out Jacobwitz's take on the city's best brunches and how long to wait for that coveted table.
Top Melbourne Brunches
Auction Rooms Cafe - "I went [to Auction Rooms] on a Thursday morning thinking it would be empty but it was packed. A good packed, not like wait-on-line packed—it had energy." With high ceilings, wooden beams and sleek hanging lamps, Auction Rooms' airy vibe is the perfect place for brunch no matter the time of day, no matter the day of the week. If you're in the mood for something sweet, opt for the brulee French toast, which comes with passion fruit labneh and white chocolate ganache.
Square & Compass - According to Jacobowitz, "Square & Compass is a near perfect brunch model." Located in East Melbourne, Square & Compass offers everything from traditional egg dishes to an eyebrow-raising peanut butter toast topped with heirloom tomatoes. Don't let the brick exterior fool you—the interior is light and airy and perfect for a leisurely meal.
Higher Ground - Housed inside what a former 19th century powerhouse, Higher Ground could be dubbed Melbourne's quintessential brunch. Jacobwitz recommends the colorful ricotta hotcake topped with an assortment of seeds, cream and fruit. The curried cauliflower dish is also notable, with creamy cauliflower-studded eggs atop a savory doughnut.
Chin Chin - "Before I went to Melbourne everyone said: 'Go to Chin Chin.' Sometimes when something is so hyped up, it can't meet expectations. But I thought their crab omelette was beyond. Everything was perfect, the perfect amount of spice. In New York when people say things are spicy, it's usually not that spicy. But this was spicy and I appreciated that."
Dos And Don'ts Of Brunch
DO look for natural light - "All my pictures use natural light and I will do anything to have it. I'll go outside, I'll find a window, I'll ask specifically where to sit. Natural light is key for a good photo."
DON'T wait too long - "I don't wait on line for brunch, ever. In New York, it's hard. If you don't go to brunch on time, there are queues. I can't handle it, I won't bribe someone for a brunch."
DO drink tequila - "I just drink tequila… Mezcal is okay, but tequila is so clean while mezcal is still a little smoky. I could just down tequila."
DON'T expect a good brunch on a plane - "I had a breakfast pastry on a plane and it was fine. But there is no plane food I would ever really enjoy."
DO take your time - "Brunch is more than a meal, it's an experience. You're rushed at every other meal, but at brunch you can sit and relax and enjoy being with friends."