Spring has supposedly sprung, and the seasonal holidays are just about here. This Sunday is Easter, and even if you’re not celebrating religiously, the occasion is a good excuse for brunch. Here are ten places to celebrate; be sure to check out our list of spots serving Passover feasts as well.
Almond Tribeca (186 Franklin Street; 212-431-0606)
The newly opened outpost of Almond (which also has locations in the Flatiron and Bridgehampton) is offering a set-price holiday brunch. For $45 per person, guests get to choose an appetizer and an entrée from options like house-made granola with yogurt, hot and cold caesar-style brussels sprouts, sausage and eggs with homefries, English pea and mint soup, leg o’ lamb french dip, duck confit hash, and Nutella-strawberry stuffed french toast. Each table also gets complimentary buttermilk biscuits, donuts, and cream danishes to start, as well as rhubarb ginger crisp with vanilla ice cream for dessert. From 5 to 9 p.m., the restaurant is following up with family-style dinner featuring roast leg of lamb, glazed country ham, and seasonal side dishes.
The Palm Court (768 Fifth Avenue; 212-546-5300)
Any day at the Plaza is an occasion in and of itself. Easter, however, is even better. In addition to its regular elegant offerings, the Palm Court has created a posh candy cart stocked with treats for the little ones (and the young at heart). All guests get to make their own candy bag to go — the restaurant is smart enough to make sure to wait to give the sugar to the kids until they’re on the way home.
The Lambs Club (132 West 44th Street; 212-997-5262)
Geoffrey Zakarian’s midtown restaurant is hosting a smooth Easter with a live jazz band during brunch. Plus, it’s giving away special holiday treats throughout the day. All guests will receive an individually wrapped bag of mini–chocolate Easter eggs. The Valrhona chocolate eggs come in three flavors: hazelnut praline, passion fruit, and coffee.
Loi Estiatorio (132 West 58th Street; 212-713-0015)
From noon to 8 p.m., Maria Loi’s new midtown eatery is offering a Greek-style Easter prix fixe. For $58 per person, the special features four courses of items like Halloumi Psito, grilled halloumi cheese with seasonal vegetables; and Boutaki Sto Fourno, citrus-herbed roasted leg of lamb with potatoes. It culminates with Melopita Sifnou for dessert, a special Greek anthotyro cheesecake served with Cretan honey.
Junior’s Restaurant (Various locations)
This iconic Brooklyn (and Manhattan) restaurant and bakery is honoring the Easter Bunny with a special cheesecake. The shop is offering its Original New York cheesecake layered with traditional carrot cake, finished with cream cheese frosting.
Tavern on the Green (67th Street at Central Park West; 212-877-8684)
Time to bust out your derby hats and Easter bonnets: The 14th Annual Tavern on the Green Easter Bonnet Competition is about to commence. The perennial Central Park mad hat fest is back this year, with a top prize of $500 in gift certificates. Compete for awards such as Most Spectacular Hat, Most Fashionable Hat, and Most Adorable Children’s Hat. Tavern on the Green is also offering a three-course lunch for $95 per person. Dinner is $125. Arrive for festivities as early as 9 a.m.; the contest starts at noon. Dinner begins at 5 p.m. Reservations are strongly suggested.
Picholine (35 West 64th Street; 212-724-8585)
Chef Terrance Brennan is offering prix fixe menus for brunch ($98) and dinner ($125) on Easter. For the breakfast-lunch hybrid, it’s three courses, with options ranging from eggs “Oscar” en cocotte with peekytoe crab and sauce maltaise to fried chicken and waffles with rhubarb foie gras syrup. Supper is a bit more extravagant; Brennan is serving a five-course tasting menu with dishes like smoked sturgeon panna cotta with wild American caviar, beets, and apples; and Four Story Hill Farm baby lamb with goat cheese gnocchi and early spring vegetables. A rhubarb dessert with a strawberry-balsamic semifreddo caps the meal.
Tocqueville (1 East 15th Street; 212-647-1515)
Francophiles, head here. This French-American restaurant is serving three-course meals for brunch ($68) and dinner ($85). Brunch dishes include crispy french toast with apple-pecan chutney and maple syrup, and truffled creamy parmesan grits and sunny-side-up country egg with house-cured veal bacon. Dinner options range from pan-roasted lamb loin and braised shoulder with lamb bacon, green peas, spring onions, mint, morels, and lamb jus to lightly smoked duck breast with baby bok choy, Asian pear, and citrus-star anise consommé. End the day with blood-orange cheesecake, served with blood-orange sorbet and candied kumquats.
Stanton Street Kitchen (178 Stanton Street; 917-963-6000)
This craft beer and wine-centric spot is catering to adults and their brood this Easter. For kids, it’s serving a $35 prix-fixe menu. And for the 21-and-up crowd, it’s serving a five-course dinner for $65 per person. Indulge in dishes like jumbo lump crab cake with citrus emulsion, potato-crusted black sea bass, and an Easter lamb entrée, a mixed grill with parts taken from across the lamb as well as lamb sausage. Finish your meal with cupcakes in flavors like double-chocolate Valrhona, carrot pumpkin with honey-pecan buttercream frosting, lemon poppy seed with Tahitian vanilla-bean butter frosting, and pink-velvet buttermilk with mascarpone cream cheese frosting.
SD26 (19 East 26th Street; 212-265-5959)
This high-end eatery is celebrating Easter the Italian way with traditional treats like Casatiello, an Italian Easter lard bread studded with black pepper and salame napoletano and topped with hard-boiled eggs. Look, too, for he time-honored Neapolitan grain pie, pastiera. And executive chef Matteo Bergamini is putting together a number of multi-course meal options, which start at $70 per person. Expect to see homemade fettuccine with lamb ragù, fresh mint, and aged ricotta infornata; boneless rabbit with fava beans and ricotta gnocchi; and the classic “Uovo” in raviolo, a homemade raviolo filled with a golden egg yolk, ricotta, and spinach and doused in truffle butter.
Follow Sara Ventiera on Twitter, @saraventiera.