Brunch is no longer a thing of only Saturdays and Sundays — and now, many restaurants have pivoted to loading a box or configuring an Instagram-worthy tray with breakfast-meets-lunch essentials, many of them meant to eat at home.
The spreads take their cues from artfully arranged charcuterie boards — but with traditional fare such as pancakes, waffles, French toast, bagels and eggs, to more of-the-moment eats like avocado toast, doughnuts, and even candy for decorating.
The Breakfast Box in Bayville, which specializes in only these boards, said the inception of this 2-month-old concept stemmed from visiting a friend with COVID. "They got really sick and ended up for a couple of weeks in the hospital, so what we did — on a whim — was we put all these things together that we make and that he really likes for breakfast," said co-owner Doug Cohen. "We threw it all in a box and we delivered it to him. He posted it on social media. Someone saw it and wanted to order one and the rest is history."
On the other hand, Michele Testaverde, owner of Rosie's Room in Massapequa, said her nearly 7-year-old bake shop and cafe had to close for almost three months at the start of the pandemic last spring. She knew she had to make some changes to reopen. "We were trying to come up with ideas for to-go things because we couldn't have any in-house or outdoor dining at that point," she said. Brunch boards promptly fit the bill.
And the trend goes on — here are seven places offering brunch boxes:
Big Brunch Box: This new brunch delivery service works in conjunction with Bagel Hut in Great Neck and brands like Carnegie Deli, Acme Fish Company, Sundae Donuts, Tate’s, Sail Away, Macaron 5 Chic and Cloud Water to create brunch boxes deliverable across the Island. Each package is entirely customizable and can include as much, or as little — although there is a $55 minimum spend — as desired. Orders must be placed by 7 p.m. Wednesdays for delivery between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. on Fridays. More info: 516-369-3700, bigbrunchbox.com
The Delica Sea (504 S. Fire Island Ave., Babylon): Stephanie Laudisio’s deli offers all the breakfast essentials for $15.99 a person on one board: yogurt parfaits, French toast sticks, avocado toast, eggs, bagels, danishes, pancakes, fruit and all the fixings (butter, cream cheeses, Nutella and sprinkles). Boards typically feed four to six, but can be customized for more, too. Order at least 48 hours in advance. More info: 631-314-4481, thedelicaseababylon.com
Hatch (286 Main St., Huntington): It would only be fitting for this cheerful brunch spot to offer a "happy box," and in this case, it’s packed with all the breakfast goods — pancakes, waffles and French toast sticks. Top ‘em with raspberry, caramel, chocolate and vanilla sauces or maple syrup. And, there’s candy and other sweets thrown in, too. The box comes with enough grub for five to six people and costs $49.95. Available for pick up only; orders must be placed a day in advance. The eatery also offers breakfast family bundles, an avocado toast bar and build-your-own mimosa kits. More info: 631-424-0780, hatchbrunch.com
The Breakfast Box at Oak Neck Deli (80 Bayville Ave., Bayville): Five signature boxes — the basic (from $35 for two), chocolate lovers (from $45 for two), the health nut (from $70 for four), mini Pop Tart (from $40 for two) and mini bagel mania (from $50 for a half dozen)— make up the menu behind this new endeavor operating out of family-owned Oak Neck Deli. Creations are prepared by co-owners Jennifer Labate and Doug Cohen (formerly of BLVD25 in Manhasset and Center Cuts butcher shop in Roslyn Heights), who also own the shop with Labate’s mother. Boards vary — you get a mix of the following: mini muffins, waffles, croissants, pancakes, bagels, candied bacon, avocado toast, mini doughnuts, yogurt parfaits, fresh and dried fruit, cream cheeses and homemade jams. Order at least two days ahead of pick up (some Nassau County delivery available). More info: 516-860-8708, breakfastboxny.com
Rosie's Room (925 N. Broadway, Massapequa): The charcuterie-esque board at this bake shop and cafe encompasses the usual suspects — pancakes, French toast sticks, waffles, avocado toast, mini muffins, croissants and fruit, plus butter, syrup, jams, jelly and Nutella; $29.99 gets you a half board, meant to feed two to three people, and $49.99 gets you a full one, meant for four to six. Order 24 hours in advance. More info: 516-797-2600
The Breakfast Club (21 South Park Ave., Rockville Centre): Traditional breakfast fare is served to-go three ways at this bright and adventurous spot — in a continental brunch box, griddle brunch box or avocado toast bar. Homemade biscuits, croissants, corn muffins, blueberry yogurt muffins, butter and homemade berry jam make up the continental; pancakes, French toast, scrambled eggs and breakfast fixings make up the griddle package; and grilled ciabatta bread, smashed avocado, oven-roasted tomatoes, feta cheese and bacon crumbles round out the avocado toast bar. Add ons include grits, traditional and home fries. All come in half or full size orders (two to three or six to eight servings, respectively), from $20 to $55. Pair a box with one of its mimosa or Bellini kits. More info: 516-600-9462, thebreakfastclubrvc.com
Broadway Gourmet Bagel & Deli (893 N. Broadway, North Massapequa): An open-faced brunch basket here yields a colorful arrangement of bagels, bacon, cream cheese, lox, avocado, fresh fruit and toppings such as red onion, tomato, cucumbers and capers. Customers can also ask for croissants, muffins, crumb cakes and hard-boiled eggs. A small — feeds four to six — costs $89.99 and a large — feeds 10 to 12 — costs $189.99. Order 24 hours ahead. More info: 516-797-4840, broadwaygourmetcaterers.com