I eat a lot of brunch. It’s one of my favourite meals and it’s also part of my job to visit cafes around Auckland and rate their Sunday morning service. Tough (tasty) gig. I get asked nearly every week for suggestions of top-notch brunch spots. It’s hard to pick just a handful with the burgeoning food scene here, but with that in mind, herewith my favourite five — this week.
1: Ortolana, the Pavillions
Britomart, 31 Tyler St
This has to be one of the prettiest places to eat in Auckland - the Hip Group is so appealing to the eye. We love the outdoors overhanging canopy and the bulbous pendant lights inside. The service is standout and the staff show great pride in decoding Ortolana's "garden to fork" menu. An impressive space to take visitors.
2: Dear Jervois
234 Jervois Rd, Herne Bay
The coffee and "cruesli" at this packed Herne Bay cafe are worth coming for. If you're into your beans, ask the hip staff about the filtered Supreme beans. The space is fresh, colourful and one of the sunniest spots on the Jervois Rd dining strip. It was bustling when it first opened last year and it has continued to please.
82 Gladstone Rd, Parnell
You might have heard of Rosie, the famous ponytail-gate cafe. It's one of the best cafes in Auckland, with smashed eggs, service and flat whites well worth lining up for. Chances are you will have, even in the rain. The menu is seasonal and the ever-changing list of
smoothies and juices are well worth sipping. We also have to point our how happy it makes you feel to sink in to the gorgeous Douglas and Bridge lattice leather chairs.
4: Matakana Market Kitchen
2 Matakana Valley Rd, Matakana
Make the day trip out to MMK, nestled down the bottom of the Matakana markets, for a cosy brunch served all day. The seating inside is warm and rustic, or rug up and soak up a spot of sun outside by the water if there's room. The meals are gorgeous, fresh and generous, so don't waste any space on market pastries before, save them for later at home.
5: Odette's Eatery
City Works Depot, 90 Wellesley St, Auckland
A Middle Eastern-inspired list to make your mouth water - the breakfast menu at Odette's is varied, healthy and seasonal. The spacious Shed 5 at City Works Depot has a stunning fit-out with handmade tiles, bright teal walls and completed with art pieces owners Clare and Joost van den Berg picked up on their travels.