Cheers to the Weekend: Our Guide to Boozy Brunches
Where should I be eating this weekend? It’s still a pressing question these days. Despite the ongoing pandemic, life goes on and our attitude towards brunch has not waned. Since nothing is stopping us from embracing a glass or two of bubbly at noon alongside gut-busting dishes, here are our top picks to get your weekend buzz on. As the saying goes, “The early bird catches the worm.”
Super Loco Robertson Quay
This Mexican joint oozes convivial vibes, and diners spilling over onto the sidewalk under the blazing hot sun is a testament to how coveted their tables are. The new weekend brunch menu features a motley crew of dishes that incite self-love—one part healthy, one part delicious. Try the super cheesy corn fritters: golden brown stacks of juicy corn mixed with jalapeño and monterey jack cheese sauced with sour cream and flanked by an avocado pico de gallo. A fine balance of nutrition and flavour is also demonstrated in the blue corn waffles, which combine gluten-free blue corn and almond waffles with crispy bacon and fried chicken. Even if you have a soft spot for anything fried, in this instance, the chicken takes a back seat to the waffles. They are irresistible and chewy in the centre with crisp, lacy edges. Beat the heat with the Loco Paloma or Skinny Margarita—this joint makes you do cheeky things.
For something more occasion-worthy, VUE’s newest surf & turf weekend lunch menu merits consideration with their bold take on meat and seafood. The pescatarian offerings are not shoddy; it’s a tough fight between the lobster thermidor and Norwegian king crab salad on toast, but the former has the edge. For an additional $18, you get a large Maine lobster and mushrooms sauteed in cognac under a cloak of cheese and hollandaise. The marriage is completed with the A5 kokuou emperor black wagyu brisket, which has slight shine from the black pepper demi-glace and falls apart at a touch. Choose between a mimosa or bloody mary to go along with all that nosh, but your attention will be on restaurant’s 1,000 terroir-driven wine bottles.
Located in the heart of the Central Business District, Cheek Bistro is reminiscent of a chic Australian cafe, boasting an open kitchen paired with contemporary overtones. Here, your mandatory egg porn dish is dressed up with blue foot mushrooms on toast and served with a handsome dollop of vegemite custard. You also won’t regret ordering the fish & chips, which is fried to beautiful golden perfection. For drinks, wash it down with either a tequila-spiked Clear Mary or a Sri Lankan iced coffee boosted with a shot of Arrack.
Tucked away on the second floor of Raffles Hotel, Butcher’s Block ditches its steakhouse impressions in favour of a more casual Mexican taqueria concept during the weekends. Whilst dry-aged steaks from the meat vault usually steal the show, shrimps and cholula and the beef tartare loaded tostada are what makes their brunch menu a success. The lip-smacking pizzas are not to be ignored as well, especially the vegetarian eggplant zucchini and labneh. More importantly, wine lovers will be delighted by the vibrant natural wine selection. From the crisp Inima Athiri Assyrtiko from Greece to the charismatic Franz Haas Pinot Nero 2016, you’ll be spoilt for choice.
Opened in 2017 by Josper (the brand that makes charcoal ovens), Pura Brasa is their first international outpost, which adds to their total of seven outlets now. Start your food trail with croquettes that have creamy innards of Jamon iberico and bechamel, followed by Josper grilled Spanish pork ribs and charcoal seafood paella that comes with Australian mussels and tiger prawns imbued with a smokiness. The brunch menu, which gets you four tapas, two main courses and one dessert, is what hooks you in initially, but their two-hour free-flow of cava, wine and beer will leave you coming back for more.
Heart of Darkness
If you are an ardent beer drinker, Heart of Darkness offers a two-hour free-flow package of a tidy selection of two cocktails and two beers for $88 inclusive of a brunch item. Swing by with your squad to enjoy the Benedict’s Mistress, a cheeky play on the regular eggs benedict with palate-piquing miso butter and lemongrass chicken thrown into the mix. The Iberico pork belly taco loaded with scrambled eggs is another winner that sets you up for a carefree Sunday.