Hamilton is a big brunch city, and the proof is in the sheer volume of spots specializing in Eggs Benedict, omelettes, French toast, and so many more satisfying morning indulgences.
With dozens of humble greasy spoons and spots for bougie breakfast fare, curating a list of our 10 favourites was no easy task; but we tried to get an eclectic mix that covers as much local ground as possible.
Without further ado, here’s our list of the top 10 brunch spots in Hamilton for 2022!
This unique Barton Village gem is a Parisian-style cafe specializing in made-to-order sweet and savoury crepes.
With crepe selections like the Cefran, made with artisanal ham, a sunny free range egg, Emmental cheese, and beurre aux Herbes du Provence; or the Trome with fresh berries, lemon juice, wildflower honey, toasted almond, and Chantilly cream; Verlan has all of the makings for a brunch that’s light, satisfying, and classy all at once.
A recent reinvention of Osten Beerhall in the Crown Point area, Bernie’s Tavern aims to bring a chef-driven touch to all of the relaxed comforts of your neighbourhood bar & grill.
Sandwiches, steak dinners, and Sicilian-style pan pizzas are prominent features of the menu, and Bernie’s also offers up a standout weekend brunch with a braised beef Eggs Benedict, lemon ricotta pancakes, and a house breakfast sandwich called The Cure. The vibes are welcoming, the portions are huge, the food is great; what’s not to love?
The French has long been an eye-catching fixture of King William Street’s restaurant row, its old-world exterior suggesting a fine bistro or cafe in Paris.
But it’s what’s inside that counts, and The French consistently delivers in that department as well, their weekend brunch menu featuring enticing options like a Croque Monsieur, Tostada Rancheros, salmon melt, or their famous duck waffles with blueberry and creme fraiche.
Classic, old-school diner vibes are matched with a no-nonsense menu of hearty, homestyle breakfast dishes at this longstanding Hamilton restaurant.
Breezy Corners keeps things simple with a menu of the usual suspects like bacon & eggs, pancakes, skillets, French toast, and omelettes, with dishes cooked from scratch for a homemade feel. If you like a good, straightforward brunch with no frills, you won’t find a better spot in town than this one.
For a neon-soaked, 80s-style diner experience that’s more on the elevated side, Electric Diner is the place for you.
With two locations in Hamilton – a flagship in Hess Village and a recently opened sister spot in Lister Block – Electric Diner has easily cemented itself as one of Hamilton’s favourite spots for breakfast, lunch, cocktails, and fun vibes.
Breakfast selections take notes from classic diner staples with eclectic modern twists like the Electric Benny, which features poached eggs, bacon, Corn Flake-crusted French toast, hollandaise, and hickory sticks; or the decadent Strawberry Cheesecake Short Stack with strawberry swirl pancakes, strawberry syrup, cream cheese frosting, graham cracker crumble, and fresh strawberries.
A James North spot best known for its playful nose-to-tail culinary approach, Rapscallion & Co. is also a hot spot for brunch.
Their themed Beatles Brunch on weekends, enjoyed with a playlist of exclusively Beatles music, favours meat-forward dishes like the Eggs Picard, a play on Eggs Benedict with duck and spiced hollandaise; the Duck Stack, which kicks your typical pancakes up several notches with duck confit, duck crackling, and duck gravy along with double cream brie and bacon; or the Croque Madame elevated with the addition of suckling pig.
Don’t let this scare you off if you’re a vegetarian, though; Rapscallion & Co’s ample menu also features numerous tempting choices that are completely meat free and just as indulgent.
This adorable diner in Downtown Dundas offers a vintage aesthetic and an enticing brunch menu that favours quality ingredients from local suppliers.
Simple breakfast dishes like waffles, French toast, omelettes, and breakfast sandwiches are taken up a notch with the use of meat from Cumbrae’s, cheese from Mickey McGuire’s, and other ingredients made in-house like sauces and granola. With ice cream and baked goods on hand too, Jax Sweet Shoppe is a must for a visit to Dundas.
A strong coffee program makes Cannon Coffee Co. a prominent fixture of the local cafe scene, but the true name of the game here is Waffles.
The Cannon’s brunch menu is dominated by sweet and savoury waffle dishes, thick and fluffy and made to order. Whether it’s a massive breakfast sandwich with egg, fresh toppings like tomato and greens, and house spicy mayo on a cheddar waffle; or the Canadian Brunch that loads an apple waffle with bacon, poached eggs, and cheese; it’s basically impossible to leave The Cannon unsatisfied.
With its well-earned popularity, this tiny eatery and espresso bar on James North could easily fill a restaurant 10 times its size on a daily basis.
The Saint James makes excellent coffee, yes, but it also makes a brunch unlike anything else in the city: comfort food that’s chef-driven and creative without being remotely unapproachable. The Drive-Thru is one of the city’s best breakfast sandos, a take on the Egg McMuffin that features a house sausage patty, American cheese, a homemade hash brown, fried egg, and chilli mayo on an English muffin; and their hearty tartines like the Avocado Toast remain beloved staples. Oh, and don’t forget an order of their home fries on the side. Trust us on this one.
You’d be forgiven for thinking you’d stumbled into a beachside cafe in Miami when you arrive at Motel, one of Hamilton’s most popular brunch spots that regularly draws visitors from near and far for its eclectic, oh-so-indulgent menu.
Pastel-hued surroundings and fun hotel-themed decor make for an immersive experience matched with Motel’s Instagram-worthy dishes like the Champagne Pancakes finished with gold flakes, the Cheesy French Toast made with homemade challah cut as thick as a slice of cake, or the Buttermilk Fried Chicken & Waffles served with sweet & spicy sauce and homemade vanilla honey butter. Motel regularly sees lineups out the door, and it’s not at all hard to see why.
Honourable Mentions: Seasoned Restaurant, Caro, Toby’s Goodeats, Synonym, Aberdeen Tavern, 541 Eatery & Exchange, Gage Park Diner, Bedrock Bistro, Maple Leaf Pancake House.
What changes would you make to our list? Let us know in the comments!