From breakfast to bottomless brunches, get ready to explore the city with Melbourne’s 10 best brunch spots of 2021.
Go solo and relax with a book surrounded by nature, or catch up with friends and get energised in a vibrant space. That precious little moment between breakfast and lunch is yours for the taking.
Melbourne is a multicultural hub where creatives thrive, and the brunch scene is no exception. The best cafe’s, restaurants and eateries around Melbourne’s CBD are always innovating and reinventing their space and their craft to redefine the essence of brunch.
Whether you love pancakes for a sweet pick-me-up in the early afternoon, poached eggs on sourdough with smashed avo or you’re ready to try something completely new, our list of the 10 best places to get brunch around Melbourne has it all!
Beggs & Acon
Meet Beggs & Acon, a new venture from the creators of beloved Chapel Street restaurant Mr Miyagi. Sights set on serving a bacon and egg roll, a cut above the rest, this brunch nook supports local suppliers and sustainable farming practices. With the belief that fresh is best, the team serves up decadent comfort food everyday from 8am. Born amid Melbourne’s COVID-19 lockdown, the eatery was conceived as a pop-up shop serving made-to-order takeaway breakfast to Prahran locals. But, thanks to its booming popularity, the venue is now a permanent fixture in Melbourne’s brunch scene. Nowadays, you can dine in at this venue, or takeaway and soak up the sunlight and green grass in Prahran’s ‘urban backyard’, Prahran Square, a short walking distance from the restaurant.
Norman South Yarra
Rain or shine you can find a comforting beverage at Norman seven days a week, be it coffee from the takeaway window, or something a little harder from their signature bar cart. Located in the heart of South Yarra, it is the perfect brunch spot in Melbourne to meet-up with friends and relax. The multi-level venue is spacious yet warmly welcomes you inside. The menu compliments the atmosphere deliciously; feast on crumpets with vanilla coyo and hibiscus poached pears all while surrounded by lush greenery, whether you’re inside or al fresco. With an adorable menu options for kids, such as Dippy Eggs ($12) with cheesy bread soldiers, this is the brunch spot with a little something to make everyone smile.
Friction is an unpretentious urban retreat nestled into Essendon Fields’ business and community hub. The freshness and simplicity of their menu has propelled this down-to-earth eatery into a position alongside Melbourne’s most famed brunch venues. The bright interior with green accents is a crisp breath of fresh air against its industrial backdrop. Opened by the founders of both The East Pantry and Parkstone Cafe, it comes at no surprise that Friction’s food is renowned locally thanks to their wealth of experience in hospitality. The extensive menu includes a range of diverse options including sweet treats, savoury brunch favourites and vegetarian friendly dishes. Beverages vary from locally roasted coffee sourced from ST. ALi in South Melbourne, to wines and spirits.
Bellboy welcomes you in with a skip in its step – a true brunch destination located centrally within the East Brunswick Village. Offering a range of traditional brunch foods, drinks and a dedicated bagel section, the venue is a light filled space with soft spoken elegance; the team, an all-star cast. Enjoy coffee roasted in house by golden bean award recipient Mark Leo. Or, a brunch menu designed by head chef Michael Martin whose extensive resume includes some of the most popular eateries from New Zealand to Melbourne. The cafe itself is a namesake to its owner Emilio’s first hospitality job over two decades ago. Bellboy is the lovingly crafted consolidation of over 10 years experience in cafes combined with an additional decade of service expertise.
Riché is the latest cafe contender on Bridge Road Richmond. The eatery brings a welcome pop of colour and a fresh attitude to the once booming, now, underrated strip. Committed to breathing new life into the brunch experience, Riché offers a unique Asian-inspired menu within a vibrant space defined by its signature orange and navy blue colour scheme. From its inception the venue has been creatively tackling the COVID-19 restrictions with do-it-yourself breakfast kits delivered to your home. Today, guests can enjoy a delicious meal in house, takeaway, or try to make it themselves. The choice is yours.
Titled as one of the best places to get brunch in Melbourne, this is one popular venue among Northcote locals with some of the most photogenic food in the city. Black Waffle boasts a dark interior with signature menu items such as their charcoal vanilla ice cream, served as a milkshake or in a blacked-out waffle cone. The eatery is one of the most inclusive dessert-style brunch spots in Melbourne, located on Northcote’s High Street, with a number of gluten-free and vegan alternatives available. But this ice creamery and waffle bar isn’t all sweet, their menu includes bagels and toasted sandwiches as well as pancakes, waffles, milkshakes and more.
The Budapest Café
A newly constructed brunch spot in Melbourne, the Budapest Cafe’s interior was designed to emulate the cinematic nuance of a Wes Anderson film. The walls are layered with intrigue in ways that will have your eyes exploring the space as you sip on your coffee, or peach iced tea. The enchanting venue, located on Swanston Street Carlton, is supported by an elaborately charming menu. Staples include a list of specialised beverages such as Butter Foam Coffee ($8) and Japanese inspired dishes, Wagyu Senga ($28) and a tornado-like omelette on rice. This quirky, unconventional eatery is a great addition to mix up your weekly brunch rotation.
Tucked away in one of South Melbourne’s converted warehouses, this cafe doubles as a coffee roastery and general store; so you can always take a bag of beans, and a bit of the whimsy home with you. Open from 7am to 5pm, Monday to Sunday, brunch consists of anything from oysters by the half-dozen, to an open face steak sandwich. For something more gastronomic, pizza is available after 12pm on weekends and the expansive wine and cocktail list, including non-alcoholic options, provides the perfect selection to keep your whole brunch crew satisfied. The eatery’s hearty menu is perfectly aligned with the cosy, rustic interior that draws you in from the street with the sweet smell of coffee beans and toasted sourdough.
Found on Church Street Brighton, this cafe is anything but ordinary; serving some of Melbourne’s most photo-worthy and delicious culinary creations. You can forget about bacon and eggs on sourdough or diving into a plate of candied prosciutto and poached eggs on roast pumpkin. Brighton Soul’s modest, exposed brick interior houses some of the most colourful brunch food in Melbourne. The internationally-inspired menu includes dumplings, ramen and even tacos, alongside more recognisable brunch flavours like apple pie filled buttermilk waffles. Everything from the Iced Red Velvet Latte, poured over Persian fairy floss; to the crispy chicken steamed bao, is vibrantly coloured with creative, natural, methods. Their drinks menu ranges from blue algae cold brew, to two choices of coffee bean blends and a cocktail and wine list.
Pontoon St Kilda Beach
A stone’s throw from the water, brunch at Pontoon St Kilda Beach feels like an instant getaway. Soak in the gorgeous view, explore the bar and brunch menu, and relax to the sound of the ocean. Open Monday to Sunday, 12pm until sunset, the kitchen is open all day and on weekends this St Kilda-based brunch spot hosts live music. Whilst you’re here, be sure to try the Flamed Cherry Tomato Skewer ($11) or the Falafel Flatbread ($21) with tomato and avocado. Inside, or alfresco, you can enjoy an unobscured view of the beach and spend time with your friends at this laid back restaurant.
Brunch, while delicious, is a morning-persons game. For the night owls, here are Melbourne’s 10 Best Rooftop Bars to check out after hours. If you’re far away and missing Melbourne’s rich brunch culture, Take a look at Thanks a Brunch: The Melbourne Cookbook Helping Those in Need – bringing the signature culinary style to homes across Australia.