Restaurant News & Reviews

Here are the best brunch spots in Sacramento (that we may have missed the first time)

We’ve heard the cacophony of wails of righteous indignation in our comments sections after our first best Sacramento brunch list went online last week.

In it, we named some admittedly excellent restaurants where residents from throughout the metro can get the best eats during that magical hour-long block between 10 and 11 known as brunch.

Some restaurants that made the cut were Sacramento stalwarts, but some raised eyebrows and drew a slew of reader suggestions on top-tier brunch places that must have slipped our minds.

We asked on Facebook, “What places did we miss?” and boy, did you deliver.

Based on reader comments, here are a few more of the best brunch spots in and around town:

Bacon & Butter

5913 Broadway and 3838 J Street, Sacramento

OK, we get it, you like this place. You really, really like this place.

By far the most popular reader gripe was that we failed to mention Bacon & Butter, a two-location restaurant that offers some of the best brunch in town.

It’s got California-stlye brunch classics like breakfast burritos with chorizo and pico de gallo, and avocado toast with ham and egg, but also offers American standard fare done well, like its buttermilk pancakes and waffles.

Bacon & Butter is so good it was ranked in the top 100 best brunch spots nationwide by Yelp, earning ninth place out of the country’s many millions of brunch restaurants.

And people know it, too. Sacramento Bee food critic Carla Meyer said a few years ago that “crowds flock on weekends” to Bacon & Butter because it “perfects the basics ... before expanding one’s idea of what a diner standard should be with seasonally inspired reinterpretations.”

And while, yes, they do have plenty of bacon and fatty delicacies, there are vegetarian options as well, making it a great choice for any Sunday outing.

Fox & Goose

1001 R Street, Sacramento

“No fox and goose?” Reddit user BigRedMik wrote on a post lambasting our previous article. “No faith in this list.”

Well, rest easy, BigRedMik. We’ve got you.

The downtown public house offers a delightfully warm atmosphere with high ceilings and brick walls, and an array of English breakfast dishes, plus waffles and omelets that shouldn’t be overlooked on indolent weekend mornings.

Fox & Goose is probably best known for its full English breakfast – complete with bangers and mash, baked beans and grilled tomatoes – and is also one of the few places in town to serve Welsh rarebit sauce.

The restaurant has been a mainstay in Sacramento for more than 40 years, so much so that then-mayoral candidate Darrell Steinberg once described it as “part of the fabric of Sacramento.”

Yelpers note that Fox & Goose is often very busy during the brunch hour, and while popularity is not always a reflection of quality, in this case we believe it is.

Pushkin’s

1813 Capitol Avenue, Sacramento

Pushkin’s has two menus for food: a brunch menu and a vegan brunch menu. That should tell you a little something about its dedication to everyone’s favorite mashup meal.

The midtown restaurant – derived from the bakery of the same name – offers exclusively gulten-free fare, yet its baked goods don’t come with the odd aftertaste that gluten-free food often suffers from.

Pushkin’s has something for just about anyone, from tofu scrambles, quinoa bowls and kale salads to corned beef sandwiches, chicken tacos and grilled cheese.

Breakfast food, with all its alluring syrupy sweets, can get a bit belt-tightening, but the healthier options at Pushkin’s are a welcome alternative for a Sunday brunch.

“Pushkin’s restaurant feels like a find, for its exceptionally fresh-tasting, preservative-eschewing food and drink,” Bee reviewer Carla Meyer said in 2017.

Tower Cafe

1518 Broadway, Sacramento

You already knew we were going to include Tower this time, right?

It’s quintessential Sacramento – residents have been brunching next to the historic Tower Theatre for decades.

On its website, the restaurant boasts “one of the most popular” brunches in Sacramento, and its easy to see why they might be right.

Tower also made Yelp’s national top brunch list, coming in seventh place with its international menu ranging from Jalisco Pozole to Shanghai noodle salad, and its outdoor patio garden provides a luxuriant ambiance.

One of the most-liked comments on Facebook regarding our previous article from Nicole Flynn simply read “Tower! Hands down.”

That seems to sum it up. Take your mom.

The Porch

1815 K Street, Sacramento

Reddit user stonedshannanigans boldly – if somewhat facetiously – claimed that The Porch is the “ONLY CORRECT ANSWER FOR BRUNCH IN SACRAMENTO!” It was a top-10 list; there were nine other answers that could not be The Porch.

And while there may be some fine brunchtime establishments on this and our previous list, The Porch is certainly a go-to option in Sacramento.

While you might not think Southern cuisine and brunch go hand-in-hand, The Porch’s chicken and waffles, skillet cornbread and fried chicken salad satisfy midmorning cravings.

Plus, its ingredients are often high-quality and sourced from local providers.

Our food critic described “the aroma of corn bread with fresh rosemary and orange zest” and “fried chicken that had a crunch and tenderness that will live on in my dreams” – but did note that meals can get quite expensive.

Pancake Circus

2101 Broadway, Sacramento

Many critics and scholars have said flapjacks are the superior form of breakfast food. Some have postulated further that Pancake Circus is the all-time best brunch restaurant in Sacramento.

It was even (sort of) on our list of local restaurants snubbed by the Michelin guide.

Although the restaurant may be carnival-themed, brunch at Pancake Circus is no laughing matter.

“No Pancake Circus?” Reddit user sometacos111 said of our previous brunch article. “Bunch of clowns at Sac Bee.”

Kind of hard to argue at this point. Please feel free to berate me in the comments.

Honorable mentions

Other great Sacramento-area brunch places you mentioned included East Sacramento’s Evan’s Kitchen, The Morning Fork in midtown, Beast and Bounty in the R Street corridor and Iron Horse Tavern near Fremont Park. Got more suggestions? Just let us know!

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Vincent Moleski covers business and breaking news for The Bee and is a graduate student in literature at Sacramento State. He was born and raised in Sacramento and previously wrote for the university’s student newspaper, the State Hornet.
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