5 brunches to shake up your weekend routine

There's a new savory waffle in town.

There's a new savory waffle in town. Pajarito

Eggs Benedict again? Sure, there are worse problems to have in this mean old world than an overabundance of Hollandaise and English muffins, but why not mix up your brunch game a bit?

Chinese dim sum, Mexican fare, and an all-out brunch festival are a few ways to do it.

Our pick for the best Chinese food of the year is the best for a whole bunch of reasons and now we’ve got another to add to the list: They’re serving brunch!

The south Minneapolis bistro has added Saturday and Sunday daytime eats to its fun-loving but precise approach to second-generation Chinese. They're serving a full list of small plates plus a bunch of new entrees.

We love that you can start with dumplings, wings, or egg rolls (or all three) and then move on to a breakfast bao with fried chicken and a sunny egg on a steamed bun. A behn xeo omelet is a traditionally Vietnamese eggy crepe, and at Dumpling they’re incorporating ground chicken, bean sprouts, and spicy cucumber salad with herbs.

Or, just have the true breakfast of champs: a big bowl of pho with rice noodle, brisket, and jalapeno.

Saturdays and Sundays, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
4004 Minnehaha Ave. S., Minneapolis

Photo courtesy of Draft Horse Facebook Page

The Draft Horse “Bakers + Makers” Brunch
Think of this as the crowd-sourced brunch.

The Draft Horse is the restaurant annex of Food Building, where some of the best local foodstuffs are made: Minnesota-sourced and hand-crafted sausages and charcuterie from Red Table Meat, milled-in-house bread from Baker’s Field, and for a little while longer, made-on-site cheeses from Lone Grazer.

(Lone Grazer is sadly closing down soon, but Baker’s Field will have their delicious products for about another month, which is another reason to check out brunch.)

Also expect pancakes made from kernza, a milled-on-site nutty-tasting wheatgrass, and a treat called the Breakfast Buddy sandwich with your choice of Red Table bologna or ham plus assertive Lone Grazer “Northeazy Cheese.”

Bonus: Watch for Food Building pop-ups on certain Sundays where you can buy and take home all the stuff to make your own brunch, lunch, and dinners at home.

Sundays, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
11714th Ave. NE, Minneapolis

Mexican food in the morning is a clever way to bust a hangover, and Pajarito is now serving a handful of brunchy items with an accompanying list of hangover-busting cocktails.

The “pambazo” alone is reason enough to go. It's traditionally a guajillo broth-dipped sandwich, but here, in keeping with their modernist edge, it's a flaky French-style "Boillo" roll filled with chorizo and tomato, then drizzled with the broth and finished with a sunny egg. 

For more traditional brunch fare, there's huevos rancheros, as well as chocolate-orange-caramel French toast for sweet teeth. And, the Birchwood's isn’t the only savory waffle in town anymore. Get one here with black beans, chorizo, and Tapatio hot sauce syrup.

Fresh takes on the bloody, the Salty Dog, the Tequila Sunrise, and a boozy rum drink called “Menthols and Bitter Mornings” (don’t act like you’ve never been there) make up the daytime drinks list.

Sundays, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
605 W. Seventh St., St. Paul

$20 Bottomless Mimosa Brunch at Stem Wine Bar
Why is brunch the best meal of the week? All together now: Day drinking!

Stem Wine Bar will push aside its usual drinking program of wine, wine, and more wine to bring you well, sparkling wine, with OJ (or passion fruit, or grapefruit, or mango). In other words, they're hailing the almighty mimosa.

Get all-you-can-drink wine in the morning for $20. Stay all day if you want.

If the urge to eat strikes, look to traditional dishes like Bananas Foster French toast, Crab Benedict, and daily quiche.

10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturdays
10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sundays
24 University Ave. NE, Minneapolis

Alma Guzman

Put the crowning glory on brunch by attending Hi-Lo’s Brunch-a-Palooza, your summer festival, now with more pancakes.

Fifteen breweries, five distilleries, and seven bands will converge upon the river to bring your brunch to the great outdoors and to new heights both literally and figuratively at Upper Landing Park.

The main event, epic quantities of brunch-style eats, will be provided by Hi-Lo Diner and Blue Door Pub, including mini breakfast “Blucys,” huevos rancheros totchos, Hi-Lo’s signature Hi Tops, and much more.

It’s never to early to mark your calendar for this one.

Saturday, June 3, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Upper Landing Park, St. Paul
Tickets are $59 and can be purchased here.