The view of New York from Dubuque and Ho-Ho-Kus is a laughable one, but we could never understand the reason why. Don’t the editors of Forbes Traveler, author of this ridiculous “America’s Best Brunches” feature live in New York? It’s as if Vogue were to get its New York fashion sense from watching Sex and the City. The four brunches called out — Balthazar, Prune, Cookshop, and Norma’s — are places nobody we know would touch if they were giving away bottomless mimosas. Not because they aren’t good. But they’re all wildly crowded, and in neighborhoods where no one would ever want to be on a hung-over weekend day. (Despite Forbes’ assurance that West Chelsea is “the trendiest of neighborhoods.”)
For our money, the real New Yorkers either eat brunch a block from home or skip it entirely. With a few exceptions, such the admittedly good ones at Cookshop and Prune or the amazing menu offered at the Tasting Room, brunch is overpriced and cooked entirely by third-string line cooks. New Yorkers who have wised up to the brunch trap are far more likely to go for dim-sum delivery, the soothing darkness and deep-fried treats of a sports bar, or, failing that, a cup of hot coffee somewhere far from affluent chatterboxes of the kind who read Forbes and go to brunch. Give us some leftover moussaka and a cup of black coffee, and we’ll be fine.
America’s Best Brunches [Forbes via MSNBC]