I think I first fell in love with brunch the year after I left college. I was sharing an apartment with several friends on the Upper West Side of Manhattan and was quickly horrified to realize that there were now only two days a week when it was possible to sit around a table with your pals and gab endlessly about anything and everything (instead of the seven days a week I had grown accustomed to at school). As real life continued to rear its humdrum head, Saturdays were taken up with errands and other activities, both pleasurable and mundane. But Sundays — holy Sunday — my friends and I would almost always gather for brunch.
We’d go to different places, everywhere from the corner greasy spoon to — as our salaries slowly creeped up — more “foo-foo” spots, as my friend called them. Certain places (and dishes) still stick in my mind. I remember that at the time, I thought the strawberry butter at the Popover Café was the most exotic treat I had ever experienced.
Different people would show up each week — college friends who had settled elsewhere, new boyfriends, sisters, brothers, occasionally even someone whose identity was never revealed. And we’d talk and eat and talk and eat some more — but best of all, we’d take our time and relax. Here is where we would reconnect, rejuvenate, and reinspire. While going out to dinner has its own (wonderful) pleasures, I’ve learned over the years that there’s something about the sun pouring through the window and the sobering yet comforting effect of a warm cup of coffee that seems to make the conversation more meaningful.
I still love brunch. At its best, it’s a magical mix of exploring great food, great relationships, and the great joy of relaxing. But now, I love embarking on brunch day trips around the Valley. We’re blessed to have such a wide range of world-class restaurants, and this month we’re thrilled to show you — in gorgeous four-color — the glories of brunch at nine very special spots. We’ve even thrown in recommendations of what to do after you’ve stuffed yourself silly. So make your reservations.
Now, if only there were more Sundays each month.
Olivia J. Abel
Editor in Chief
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