Here are five recommendations for brunches on Mother’s Day (May 8).
Four places made the list because they deliver a consistently high quality of food and together represent a variety of price ranges and degrees of formality.
I haven’t tried the remaining selection, the Hyatt buffet. It’s included because it evokes fancy Mother’s Day buffets from the 1980s – the decade during which, according to “Brunch: A History” author Farha Ternikar, brunch exploded in the United States.
Cask & Barrel
This small, wonderful Del Paso Boulevard restaurant, in the former Enotria space, isn’t doing a special menu for Mother’s Day, but it is, in honor of the holiday, taking reservations for groups smaller than the usual minimum of six people. It’s also opening up its now rarely used back patio area.
Chef Gabriel Glasier also recently unveiled a new spring brunch menu that includes a vegetable Benedict with smoked turkey, a kale and seaweed Caesar salad, and a fried chicken biscuits with pimento cheese and radish pickles. Cask & Barrel’s brunch items also include its vying-for-best-in-town mac ’n’ cheese, made with sharp cheddar, bacon crumbles and beer, and platters of the smoked meats it also serves for dinner.
The meat platters run $30 for two types of meat, $45 for three. Most entrees range from $10-$15.
10 a.m.-2 p.m. May 8. 1431 Del Paso Blvd., Sacramento. 916-922-6792. caskandbarrel916.com
Hyatt Regency Sacramento
The buffet features honey-glazed ham and prime rib along with the usual eggs and waffles. The hotel’s website also promises an “iced seafood display,” aka the whole reason to go to a hotel buffet.
$64.95 general, $32.95 ages 5-12. 10 a.m.-3:30 p.m. May 8. 1209 L St., Sacramento. 916-321-3609 (reservations). sacramento.hyatt.com. (Complimentary parking included).
Mama Kim Eats
Cask & Barrel’s neighbor is offering a special $30-per-person Mother’s Day brunch that includes a starter of fresh berries with Grand Marnier, a variety of breads and muffins and entree choices ranging from Passmore Ranch smoked trout hash to mushroom and three-cheese frittata to a duck-confit and wilted Bloomsdale-spinach salad. This brunch also features live music.
$30 general, $15 ages 12 and younger. 10 a.m.-3 p.m. May 8. 1616 Del Paso Blvd., Sacramento. 916-515-9971. mamakimcooks.com.
Putah Creek Cafe
There’s no designated Mother’s Day brunch at this charming corner cafe in Winters, but it will offer special dishes all weekend, including a hearty, tangy smoked-brisket Benedict and grits-and-eggs with wilted spinach and Italian sausage.
Go early – the place opens at 6 a.m., and the light in the big-windowed corner building is beautiful in the morning. Though this might contradict the idea of rolling out of bed at one’s leisure for an unhurried brunch, the light is worth it.
Prices are a bit higher here ($10-plus for most entrees) than at other brunch/breakfast spots, but so is quality.
6 a.m.-3 p.m. every Saturday and Sunday. 1 Main St., Winters. putahcreekcafe.com, 530-795-2682
Here’s where to take that mother who’s game for anything, like ordering off a regular menu and possibly jostling with other hungry people crowding the small waiting area of this scruffed-up midtown Mexican restaurant that sits in an old house.
Weekends almost always are packed, just as Tres Hermanas’ salsa always holds a reliable amount of snap, and its huevos rancheros – Mexico’s best-known specifically brunch item – offers dependable heft and a spicy kick.
Plus, the brunch menu includes top-notch lunch items like chili rellenos and tacos. Best of all, a bunch of people can go, chip in for mom, and get out of there for $30 or less apiece.
7 a.m.-2 p.m. every Saturday and Sunday. 2416 K St., Sacramento. treshermanasonk.com, 916-443-6919.