Words by Sydney MacDonald

Whether you need a break from the bottomless brunch crowd or wake up craving dim sum at 9:00 am, we’ve got you covered. Brunch culture in NYC can leave us swimming in an agony of Instagram posts, repetitive egg dishes, waitlists and stale bloody marys. That’s why CONVICTS is bringing you Brunch That Isn’t Whack, a written mini-series about atypical brunches that will get you your Saturday morning fix without that hangover of basic feeling. So, with that in mind, CONVICTS scouted up the finest brunch-dishing Asian restaurants to satisfy the cravings you didn’t know you had.

Nom Wah Tea Parlor: One of the oldest spots in Chinatown has served up acclaimed dumplings and dim sum for nearly a century. Its vintage exterior, checkered tablecloths, and low prices are just dressing on the dumpling. If you’re strolling the outskirts of Chinatown this weekend, pop in to Nom Wah for a brunch-time sample of unique menu items like chicken feet and the “original” egg roll.

Hi-Collar: If you’re looking for coffee turned up to 11, the classy Japanese coffeehouse Hi-Collar has your back. Along with their absurdly impressive craft-coffee menu, Hi-Collar’s brunch menu also features hot cakes, omurice, and a katsu sandwiches. The cafe’s only got stools at their counter, so get there early if you want to enjoy breakfast and a cup of some of the finest joe in NYC.  

Joy Luck Palace: The Joy Luck Palace is a newly popular breakfast destination. Carts of Dim Sum fill this bustling Chinatown restaurant as patrons continually shuffle in and out. With no breakfast reservations and someone calling out your table number from a microphone things can feel a little chaotic, but it’s definitely worth hanging in there for the dining experience.         

Okonomi: This Williamsburg restaurant offers an incredible breakfast that focuses on seasonal domestic seafood. Okonomi serves traditional Japanese ichiju-sansai set meals which include a choice of three fish options, rice, tamango soup, and pickles. The restaurant prides itself on embodying the Mottainai philosophy, which they describe as “minimizing waste and appreciating what is given.” This brunch choice will definitely shake up your overdone routine of fried egg sandwiches and mimosas.

Mission Chinese Food: You may have heard the buzz about this trendy spot for dinner, but what you might not know is that they also serve an incredible brunch. Whether you want to enjoy a pot of their matcha green tea, munch on some tea egg rolls, or inhale their famous Chongqing chicken wings, this place is one of our all time favorites.  

Hanoi House: This Vietnamese brunch spot can be found in the East Village, dishing up some tasty pork belly baguettes and salmon crepes. Their fusions of American and Vietnamese cuisines will leave your taste buds overwhelmed with flavor, and keep you coming back again and again. Don’t miss out on the opportunity to sip on an egg coffee and enjoy a relaxing Saturday morning at this premium breakfast venue.