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By Kat Hayes
April 11, 2018

Where to Brunch When a Celebration Is in Order

Brunching is for any event, but especially for celebrations.
By Kat Hayes
April 11, 2018


in partnership with

Brunching is for any event, but especially for celebrations.

Congratulations! Hurray! Mazel tov! You got a new job, you've graduated, you've turned a significant age, you've broken up with your deadbeat partner. It's time to celebrate new beginnings and old chapters ending, and what better time of day to do it than morning time?

Well, the best bit about a celebratory brunch is that it doesn't actually have to be morning time. Roll out of bed whenever you feel like it on the weekend and you can probably still technically say its brunch time. If new exciting things are on the horizon for you, just remember that life is short and when else are you going to have an excuse to cheers a glass of bubbly and eat your weight in eggs? It's good to commemorate these things when they happen mostly because a) morning Champagne and b) we should all spend more time celebrating ourselves, if you ask us.

We've teamed up with American Express to put together this list of particularly good venues for treating yourself. So, grab your brunch buddies and your trusty American Express® Card and get ready for a Champagne-fuelled brunch.

Got yourself in another dining situation and need some guidance? Whatever it is, we know a place. Visit The Shortlist and we'll sort you out.

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    Kitty Burns, situated at the base of the Sanctuary apartment development just across the road from Victoria Gardens and Ikea, rocks a minimalist Nordic feel with its light, bright and airy interior, flourishes of pastel, blond wood and abundance of plants.

    With a food menu by British chef Aaron Duffy, your Instagram feed has probably been subject to shots of the eton mess with its coconut yoghurt, strawberry textures, spiced meringue and activated buckwheat clusters served in a glass with some floral adornment. The spiced togarashi avocado is also a beautiful — and tasty — option, and there’s the requisite trendy chicken and waffles over here too. Also, its menu of smoothies have some absolute crackers (banana salted caramel, peanut butter and chocolate, tiramisu) which might just tie up the end of your celebration brunch nicely and keep you full all day.

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    While a pasta bar is a ten-out-of-ten choice for celebrating, naysayers might think that it’s only a three-out-of-ten option for brunch. They, however, are wrong. Lello Pasta Bar in Flinders Lane might be worth its weight in flour and egg, but it’s also highly proficient at serving food at times of the day other than dinner — such as brunch. Simple fare like toasted jaffles or three-grain porridge will sate your hunger. Coddled eggs or stracciatella, roast pumpkin and poached egg served with a baguette will do even more.

    The breakfast menu is served until 11am every day, so if you’re there a little later just hang out, enjoy people watching on Flinders Lane, and start again with pasta for lunch. Hip hip hooray, carbs are here to stay.

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    Bottomless brunchers, assemble: if there’s a special occasion, you might just need a special amount of food and drink. Angus and Bon, on Greville Street in the old Prahran Post Office, is a New York-inspired steakhouse that has a hefty focus on its kitchen’s wood-fired grill.

    Vegetarians, rejoice: it’s not all meat, all the time. On Saturdays and Sundays between noon and 2pm, those who want to treat themselves real nice can enjoy the bottomless brunch shenanigans. Endless mimosas, bloody marys, bellinis or spritzes. Open wide and pour those tipples on in, you’ve only got two hours to get celebrating.

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    A modern and light dining space located within the Rose Street Artists’ Market in Fitzroy, Young Bloods Diner has a menu that strays from typical Melbourne brunch fare. Eggs here aren’t poached, they’re coddled (in cream) with your choice of interesting accompaniments such as Ortiz anchovy and parmesan or confit duck and beans. Also on offer is the kedgeree — curried rice with confit ocean trout and coriander — an interesting addition to the breakfast menu.

    Come for decadent food laced in ‘who cares, it’s a celebration’. Stick around for the beaut rooftop — it has a banger of a view over Fitzroy. So even if it’s a little chilly, you’ll want to take your flat whites up there and sit a while.

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    Gilson, an all-day diner overlooking the Royal Botanic Gardens on Domain Road, is another offering from the crew that brought you Armadale cafe Mammoth. Open from 6am until midnight daily, Gilson is a riff on those deeply ingrained, old-world European cafes; it’s been built in the hopes of becoming a neighbourhood stalwart, right from the get-go. The classic bistro has been crafted around local, seasonal produce and the star of the show is Gilson’s custom-built wood oven.

    Brunch-wise? Go for the blueberry and ricotta fritters — or the baked beans with a fried egg and sausage for something hot and meaty to soak up whatever you did the night before. The restaurant even hosts a florist on the deck on weekends, so you can feel extra fancy about your fancy occasion time. You’re worth it.

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    Smoky. Bacon. Breakfast. Ramen. If those four words don’t sell you on House of Lulu White, we just don’t know what will.

    Located in South Yarra — in the old home of Paradise Girls brothel — the eatery is named after an infamous former procuress. While you might roll your eyes at a menu split into sections marked ‘naughty’ and ‘nice’, there’s no arguing with the actual food. Other food options for the less-morning-soup inclined include buttermilk fried chicken and waffles with maple nahm prik and coriander and sautéed ‘green stuff’ with hummus, pickled beetroot, seven seeds, avocado, lemon and a poached egg.

    But really, if it’s an occasion of sorts, your best option is the weekend bottomless brunch, featuring two hours of bottomless cocktails for just $30. What says ‘celebration’ more than buckets of frosé?

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    Jason Jones’s most recent venture, this new restaurant is modelled closely on the Parisian restaurant L’Entrecote and offers its South Yarra diners a refreshingly pure concept: set menus picked for you and a focus on its famous steak, fries and salad — with endless frites.

    Certainly a worthy place to feel a wee bit fancy, Entrecote also does a lush (still very Parisian) brunch menu. Try the French brioche toast, or pick something off ‘les oeufs’ menu. You can also add the aforementioned frites to your meal if you’re really looking to let your hair down and go all out. Why not, if you’re celebrating? Any day is frites day.

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    From those that brought us Cookie, The Toff, Revolver and Boney, Magic Mountain Saloon is three levels of wood, brick and Italian steel — with just a hint of a New York warehouse feel — on Little Collins Street. It’s a fully fledged bar (open till 3am every night) and it’s an all-day eatery, open for lunch, dinner, bar snacks and, most notably, breakfast – so you’ve got ample time for celebration.

    But breakfast here is not breakfast as you might expect it. Diners are encouraged to extend their tastes beyond eggs and bacon to a range of fairly substantial Thai options, both sweet and savoury. If you’re feeling less ambitious, there are omelettes. Or don your ‘morning adventures’ cap and try black sticky rice with coconut granola and dried mango ($14.50), or coddled egg and chicken ball congee ($14.40). All in all, it’s a place to visit for something a little bit special.

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    Cumulus Inc. is a sensory dream. A seamless mix of outstanding food and beautiful design, it’s a place you can drop by at any time of day. With the expansive warehouse windows transporting you anywhere from New York’s Meatpacking District to the narrow laneways of Montmartre, the space still remains inherently Melbourne, embellished with fine black details and an expansive marble bar.

    In terms of celebratory stomachs, it’s definitely a somewhere you want to kick back with a couple of glasses of bubbly. Come morning, the house-made crumpets with whipped ricotta and rooftop honey are decadent, while the house breakfast — a boiled egg, toast, preserves, yoghurt, orange juice, coffee and tea — proves that sometimes the originals are the best.


As you drink and dine with your American Express, reap all the sweet rewards of being a Card Member. Explore the many ways American Express has your back here.

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