Updated: Oct 17, 2019
Breakfast and brunch is truly an American tradition where on any given weekend, you'll find people from all over the country gathering to enjoy what many consider the best meal of the day. These are seven restaurants that are highly-rated not only by me, but by hungry people like you.
1. Duluth Grill - Duluth, Minnesota
I would have never discovered this place if it wasn't for my wife's close friend, Tram, who lives in nearby Minneapolis or if you've never watched, "Diners, Drive-In's and Dives". During a Labor Day weekend trip, she expertly planned recommendations that only locals would know. This means avoiding most tourist traps. Duluth Grill located in Duluth, Minnesota sits right next to the North Shore of Lake Superior - the greatest of the Great Lakes.
It's a very popular place, so after a 15 minute wait my wife and I were quickly seated in this L-shaped restaurant. We wanted to eat as healthy as we could (funny to say at a breakfast joint) because we had gorged ourselves at the Minnesota State Fair (think deep-fried everything!).
Luckily for us, we settled on the "Farmer's Breakfast", which features: red fennel hash, two eggs (sunny-side up for us), kale, sausage patties or bacon (we chose sausage patties) and yellow curry. During our first trip to this part of the country, we noticed that the locals love wild rice, so even though it wasn't on the menu, we asked our awesome server (who wore prescription sunglasses) if we could get s side of wild rice.
The food came out in two portions. We really appreciated the fact that our server took the initiative to split our "Farmer's Breakfast" in two. This was definitely one of the, if not, the most healthy breakfast we've had. It was the perfect portion for both of us and the lack of unhealthy carbs really spotlights the incredible taste of each item. I highly recommend the, "Farmer's Breakfast" at Duluth Grill in Duluth, Minnesota.
2. Mother's Bistro & Bar - Portland, Oregon
Mother's Bistro & Bar is the perfect way to cap a weekend trip to Portland. There will definitely be a line out the door, but trust me the hour-long wait is worth waiting for. Parking should be very easy to find around this semi-dilapidated part of downtown Portland.
The historic office building, where Mother's is currently located is separated into two dining areas. If you get to sit in the larger room, there are plenty of windows that let in plenty of sunshine, which is perfect for taking photos of your food.
Since you are in the Pacific Northwest, I recommend ordering the "Wild Salmon Hash" and the "Stuffed Frittata". The chunky salmon tasted liked it was fished out of the nearby Columbia River. You also get a choice of eggs and toast. I say go for sunny-side up eggs and wheat toast. The "Stuffed Frittata" is basically an open-faced omelet that comes with bacon, cheddar cheese and potatoes. Wash each dish down with a hot mug of coffee and a mimosa.
3. Jax Beach Brunch Haus - Jacksonville, Florida
Have you ever had breakfast owned by a professional opera singer? No? You have to check out Jax Beach Brunch Haus in Jacksonville, Florida. My wife and I found out about this place when we visited my aunt Margie who lives there. In the middle of the meal, the owner (Dan Altman) starts singing opera songs to all the customers.
After Dan did his awesome singing, he stopped by all the tables to ask how our food was. I told him I noticed that his menu was a world-wide mix of choices and he told us the reason why is that he used to travel the world singing opera and his menu reflects the various places he traveled to. Such a cool concept.
The "Corned Beef Hash and Grits" is what you need to order here. When you are in the southern part of the United States, then you should always order some grits. They were buttery and gritty! The corned beef hash was also nice and thick. One last thing, your drinks will come out in mason jars (another southern thing). The "Almond Bros", which is a iced alcohol, almond-flavored drink was refreshing. I also enjoyed the "Cold Brew Coffee", which provided a nice morning caffeine rush to start the day.
4. Breakfast Club - Scottsdale, Arizona
The Breakfast Club in Oldtown Scottsdale, Arizona is the perfect place to replenish calories after completing a tough early morning hike on nearby Camelback Mountain. This is exactly what my brother and I did. After our hike, I used the Yelp! app to get on the waiting list, which worked out perfectly. If you don't use Yelp! and prefer to call, the owner, Kyle Shivers also said that, "you can call the hostesses about 30 minutes before your arrival and they will put you on the list".
This newer looking building, which sits on the corner of Scottsdale Road and Drinkwater Boulevard has easy-to-find parking and plenty of seating. The wide-open interior is very inviting and the service is also very attentive. This forward-thinking restaurant has a modern-twist and less mom-and-pop feel.
You must order the "Chicken Fried Chicken", which is battered perfectly. It's super-crispy outside, hot and moist inside. It's a healthy sized portion, so you need to come hungry to really enjoy it. Oh yeah, it also comes with two eggs and yes, you guessed it, I ordered sunny-side up.
5. Bill's Cafe - San Jose, California
As a Bay Area native, I could not leave out Bill's Cafe, which has a total of 10 restaurants located in the South Bay. My favorite location is their original location, which has been open since 1977 and is located in Willow Glen (a neighborhood in San Jose). They recently updated their outdoor patio area, which can seat a lot of people. If you decide to eat here, you'll definitely see many people waiting to eat here.
I usually order the same thing over and over, which is a breakfast classic, "Two Eggs any style". This comes with a choice of house made hash browns or seasoned country potatoes and a choice of toast. I have never left disappointed with sunny-side up eggs, link sausages, hash browns and sourdough bread. The mimosas are also recommended and if it's your birthday please let them know and you'll get your surprise serenade!
6. Village Pub and Cafe inside Ellis Island Hotel & Casino - Las Vegas, Nevada
If you are visiting Sin City aka Las Vegas, Nevada, you need to wake up from your long night of gambling, clubbing and drinking and go grab the famous "$6.99 Steak & Eggs" meal at the Village Pub and Cafe inside the Ellis Island Hotel & Casino. You get a steak cooked anyway you like, two eggs, potatoes, sauteed mushrooms and your choice of toast.
I absolutely love eating here every single time I visit Las Vegas and I always bring whoever is with me so they can learn and experience too. Not only is it cheap, but this deal is offered 24/7! You won't see it on the menu though, so make sure you ask for it by your hard working server.
You can also play $5 blackjack hands in this rustic casino, which is really cool. It's also not very far from, "The Las Vegas Strip" either. So it's very walkable because it's centrally located and only a block east from the strip.
7. Hana Hou - Naalehu, Hawaii
Most people who I know usually don't visit Hawaii's "Big Island", but if you do and are driving to see the many sites such as the Green Beach or the Volcano National Park you'll probably want to stop somewhere for breakfast. Enter Hana Hou, which owner's Drake and Patty Fujimoto claim is the "Southernmost Restaurant in the USA!".
What you are looking to eat for here is their "Loco Moco". This is a Hawaiian staple dish, which is basically a hamburger patty with eggs and gravy served on top of brown rice. It's the epitome of comfort food and makes an ideal breakfast.
Why not try the Loco Moco out at America's southernmost restaurant? Sounds perfect to me because it is!
What are your favorite American breakfast and brunch restaurants? Your comments are valued so please share so I can check out your recommendations!
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