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upscale brunch in nyc

I'm spending 3 nights in Matthattan from the 11th May to celebrate my birthday and visit my son, who is doing a Mountbatten internship.
I would like to go somewhere special for brunch - Sunday?, ideally somewhere that does a buffet style, preferably with wine/champagne included
I assume most big hotels will do this but where would you recommend? - travel around Mahantten is not a problem and haven't booked hotel yet

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  1. we've been to the one at the Marquis Marriot in the Theater District a few years ago. A huge buffet, many stations and the restaurant revolves. The food was delicious and decadent. It is not cheap - maybe $45.00/pp.

    1. Tell me why you're interested in a buffet...I'm puzzled?

      3 Replies
      1. re: LFeinberg

        because when I visited my son at university in Hong kong 3 years ago he really wanted me to go to some hotel that did a buffet - it is not what i would normally choose but this particular hotel - and i can't remember the name, had some amazing stuff, mostly seafood, freshly cooked to order by many chefs
        I have looked at the Marquis since recieving the recommendation - but its booked out for sunday brunch as its mothers day - I did look at dinner menus at the new york tasting menu looks good - i'm a bit torn between the exicitment of revolving restaurants and doing the touristy thing and just finding somewhere good - some Auckland friends took me up the sky tower just before chistmas last year and whilst the views were specutacular the food, while ok, didn't quite match
        I was drwn to brunch also as its often a good deal - so any recommendations for good special places for lunch are very welcome

        1. re: cathya

          Brunch is my favorite meal, but I haven't seen or been to a place that serves it's brunch buffet style. I think there are much better places to eat than the Marriott Marquis. If you're interested in not doing the buffet thing, let us know and we will find you an amazing alternative.

          1. re: cathya

            I don't think there's a brunch buffet in the US can compare to the one you went to in hong kong. even the high end hotels in Vietnam have a brunch spread that make the Marquis look like the salad bar at Sonnys BBQ. For a buffet brunch in NYC, i don't think you'd be getting a good deal for the price you'd be paying. I agree with kathryn on Balthazar. And you could order 3-4 entrees and pay about as much as you'd be paying at the Marquis. you'd go away full and much more satisfied.

        2. How about the Sunday brunch at Peacock Alley in the Waldorf=Astoria? It never disappoints me.


          1. are you committed to a buffet? because there are SO many great non buffet places in the city.

            1 Reply
            1. I would love an alternative or two!!!

              2 Replies
              1. re: cathya

                Norma's at Le Parker Meridien Hotel is a fantastic upscale locale for brunch.

                1. re: LFeinberg

                  My experiences with Norma's so far are a bit inconsistent. Have I been unlucky?

              2. New Leaf Cafe in Fort Tryon Park in the northern-most part of NYC has an excellent brunch, but alas not a buffet. One of the most beautiful places in the City as well. You walk into the park through medieval-styled flower gardens with a spine-chillingly beautiful view overlooking the Hudson River. The restaurant itself is in an old stone lodge, and if the weather is nice the outdoor patio is open for seating.


                1. Off the top of my head, I know of two buffet brunches that might fit the bill:
                  Tribeca Grand
                  Cafe Botanica at Essex House

                  If it's Sunday, I prefer the more "upscale" brunches at Devin Tavern, Balthazar (not really all that upscale but it feels celebratory to me), or Ouest (call to make sure they are still serving when you're in NYC, as they don't do it during the warmer months), myself.

                  Or Eleven Madison Park if you're into a more lunch-y brunch.

                  Another recent thread:

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: kathryn

                    Will not recommend the buffet brunch at Tribeca Grand - food was mediocre and served almost like a cafeteria-style. My jaw almost dropped when I saw such low quality buffet brunch at a Tribeca hotel.

                    I have been to the one at Brasserie 8 1/2 and it was pretty decent. It has seafood like jumbo shrimp cocktails and smoke salmon and other made-to-order stations for omelette, waffles, and things like that. The variety of the food was quite large, and the space was gorgeous. However, as for most buffet don't expect mind-blowing food as they are usually at the good-to-great level. Drinks are ordered separately.

                    Just like other hounds mentioned, in NYC the non-buffet styled brunches are much better in quality

                    1. re: kobetobiko

                      The Water Club has a fantastic brunch and you have a view to boot. (PS It's Man hattan!!)

                  2. The brunch buffet at Brasserie 8 1/2 is pretty good and a great value. It's a nice space and the food is always of good quality, it's not particularly touristy or impressive otherwise though. The brunch runs $27 I believe.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: jsgjewels

                      i've never eaten at a brunch buffet in nyc, but i was going to say brasserie 8 1/2 b/c i've heard that they have one. i thought buddha bar also had a buffet brunch on sundays, but i don't know if that's still true.

                      i'm sure some of the hotel restaurants midtown-area have brunch buffets. but so very not new york!

                      i do feel for you though, as a few years ago we went out to long island for my cousin's son's 10th bday and we met at a chinese buffet in a town of good restaurants! he got to choose the place and although she was mortified for the people that traveled, it was his birthday/special day.

                    2. Turkish Kitchen, on 3rd Av., b/t 27th & 28th Sts., serves a Sunday brunch buffet. We have been to T.K. countless times for lunch and dinner, and the food is always delicious. The only reason we've never done the Sunday brunch is that I detest buffets; however, those who have tried it say it's terrific! It differs from most buffets because, while it has some of the usual suspects like French toast and an omelette station, it includes (not suprisingly) an array of Turkish dishes. The $21.95pp cost does not include tax & tip, nor does it include champagne or wine. But they have a wine list though I don't know if it includes champagne. Service is efficient, and the interior has very attractive (very red) decor. T.K. is extremely popular, so reservations are a must!


                      Happy birthday! Hope you have a wonderful visit with your son.

                      1. I recommend that you skip the "buffet" idea, though a good idea in concept, buffet type brunches are usually a bit mediocre....so my vote is for "Norma's" at the Le Parker Meridien Hotel...

                        1. I had the most amazing Brunch Buffet at the Ritz Carlton in Boston, I would imagine that the one here does a similar brunch...quite pricey and though I'm not much of a buffet fan it was fantastic!

                          2 Replies
                          1. re: taraxstar

                            can any body speak to the mark hotel brunch?

                            1. re: jsmitty

                              The restaurant at The Mark has closed.

                          2. Petrossian does a really nice, upscale brunch. We were just there a few weeks ago.

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: s.piller

                              aquavit has a brunch buffet

                              i had a nice brunch at cafe at country last weekend.