Where to Brunch in Downtown

Photo courtesy of Xochi

In our Where to Brunch series, we search Houston’s vast array of neighborhoods for the very best brunch offerings. Originally published in 2017, we are now refreshing, updating, and adding to this series, including new neighborhoods and destinations.

A mix of gorgeous Victorian buildings with modern mid- and high-rises, Houston’s Downtown serves as the original founding center of the city and today, is lined by soaring business centers, luxurious hotels, renovated and new housing, a plethora of bars and restaurants, a world-renown theater district, urban parks, art galleries and installations, sporting arenas, and even an entire underground tunnel system.

It goes without saying, but there’s plenty to do in Downtown, including brunch.

Where to Brunch in Downtown

  • Atlas Diner Located inside the super cool Bravery Chef Hall near Market Square, this chef-driven diner concept knocks out craveworthy breakfast stuffs all day long. Dig into ham, egg & cheese croissants with cheesy hash browns, apple cinnamon french toast, and meat-heavy egg plates with bacon, potatoes, toast, and three kinds of sausage. Breakfast served all day Monday through Thursday starting at 7:30am and Friday and Saturday at 8am (enter through the The Secret Garden bar in the early hours). Click here for directions.
  • Brasserie du Parc – This classic French brasserie boasts an enclosed terrace (complete with a walk-up crêperie window) that overlooks Discovery Green. There, you’ll find Parisian-inspired brunch dishes—think jambon crépe, pain perdu with fresh berries, oeufs (eggs) Bénédicte with smoked salmon, and steak frites—alongside stellar handcrafted cocktails like the über-refreshing Sunny Side of the Parc, made with housemade limoncello, green Chartreuse, fresh lemon, and Champagne. Sunday 11am to 3pm. Click here for directions.
  • The Grove – Set in the live oaks of the picturesque Discovery Green, you can enjoy a decadent brunch buffet at this Downtown stunner. Cost is $35 per person; $15 for ages 2 to 12. Sunday 11am to 3pm. Click here for directions.
  • Hearsay Gastro Lounge – Right off Market Square Park and rocking exposed brick and a dazzling chandelier, the original Hearsay is an absolute stunner. At brunch, the gastropub offers morning and afternoon pick-me-ups, including but not limited to smoked brisket hash, bourbon pecan French toast, salmon salads, and bacon-cheddar burgers. Saturday 11am to 3pm; Sunday 10am to 3pm. Click here for directions (and be sure to check out Sunday brunch at its Discovery Green location, Hearsay on the Green, too).
  • MKT Bar – Adjoining Phoenicia Specialty Foods Downtown, this neighborhood café and bar offers weekend brunch with a global kick. Start with “knefe jbneh” for the table (that’s shredded phyllo dough, layered with orange zest and sweet cheese and drizzled with orange blossom syrup), then move onto brunch plates like Hill Country fried chicken & waffles with Moroccan-spiced syrup, “Veg Out” pizzas, and piperade with eggs (soft-cooked eggs in pepper-tomato sauce, served with pita). Saturday and Sunday 9am to 3pm. Click here for directions.
  • Quattro – With one of the most expansive brunch buffets in the city, this Italian eatery inside the Four Seasons Hotel makes for quite the relaxing Sunday. That is, if your idea of relaxing is filling plate after plate with things like smoked salmon and seafood salad, omelets a-la-minute, griddled French toast and Belgian waffles, sous-vide egg and caviar, salumis and cheeses, freshly-carved Tuscan chicken and roasted ribeye, made-to-order pastas, and all kinds of sweets. Sunday 11am to 2pm. Click here for directions.
  • Xochi – Xochi is the latest concept from restaurateurs Tracy Vaught and James Beard-awarded Hugo Ortega (the minds behind spots like Backstreet Cafe, Hugo’s, and Caracol); and just like its predecessors, it makes a fantastic stop for brunch. On Sundays, that brunch comes in the form of an extravagant Oaxacan buffet—a vibrant array of tastes featuring everything from poached eggs on masa cakes, elotes, and a variety of mole to duck enchiladas, costilla rostizada (roasted prime rib), and churros. The brunch buffet is $34; $12 per child. Sunday 11am to 2:30pm. Click here for directions.

More Great Brunch Options in Downtown

Rise and shine with breakfast burritos at Barnaby’s, breakfast polenta and Italian toast at Rosalie Italian Soul, and bananas Foster French toast at Toasters; go for a big, bad, margarita-fueled brunch at El Big Bad, or a beer-fueled one at Bovine & Barley; sip moonshine cocktails over biscuits and gravy at The Moonshiners Southern Table + Bar; share brunch tapas and half-off bottles of wine on Sundays at Batanga; and check out cool Downtown food halls like Bravery Chef Hall, Conservatory, Finn Hall, and Understory.

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Brooke Viggiano
Brooke Viggiano is a food and lifestyle writer residing in Houston. When she's not contributing to publications like 365 Things to Do in Houston, Thrillist Houston and the Houston Press, she's on the hunt for the coolest happenings in the city. You can follow her musings on Twitter @BrookeViggiano .