When you have a spare morning on the horizon, and you don’t know what to do with yourself, heading for a champagne brunch is always a gratifying experience. First of all, there’s the weird thrill that comes with daytime drinking. Okay, maybe we enjoy this more here in the UK than most other nations, but I’ve attended my fair share of brunches in the U.S. too.
Then there’s the whole stuffing your face with incredible food factor. We’re into the festive season now, which means it’s socially acceptable to delve into lots of cake and other decadent treats.
Book your champagne brunch well in advance
Depending on where you choose to go, and the time of year, you may find your champagne brunch books up well in advance. So, let’s not risk the infinite embarrassment that accommodates rocking up with your friends and finding there’s no room for your busy table.
For example, Bad Egg in London consistently attracts the classic Shoreditch crowd, which means its bottomless brunches are a busy fiasco for those who don’t book ahead. At the same time, you may face disappointment if you try visiting Wicked Spoon in Las Vegas with a large party and no booking. Trust me, I tried it once, and we almost missed out on the glory that comes with drinking as much champagne as possible while filling up on decadent dishes.
On that digressing note, if your waiter or waitress take the time to ensure you and your friends continuously stay topped up, make sure you tip them accordingly. My group benefited from a corker of a waiter at Wicked Spoon, and we made sure he knew we appreciated his efforts.
Consider booking the next day off work
Even though you’re piling yourself with greasy foods that supposedly soak the alcohol you’re battering your liver with, the chances are you’re heading for a pretty eventful hangover. In addition to encountering what my friend Andrew aptly calls a ‘beeriod,’ your head is going to pound.
If you want to go all out without sending your boss into a tizzy, try taking an annual leave day. Don’t throw a sicky; that’s just crappy behavior that has a bad knock-on effect on your colleagues. Instead, fully embrace the fun opportunity that lies ahead without having to worry about how you’ll handle the next day.
Bulk up on food and don’t get too lairy
When your body absorbs alcohol, it does so through the wall of the small intestine. That’s why you get drunk a little faster when you don’t have anything to eat. Or a lot more quickly, if you’re anything like me.
If you grab a plate of champagne brunch delicacies before necking your first glass and nibble throughout, you’ll slow the absorption of alcohol. As a result, you’re less likely to become a sprawling mess who slurs their way through the day’s conversations.
That leads to my next point: try not to get too lairy. If you’re heading for a champagne brunch, you’re probably surrounding yourself with a decent-ish company. Heading down the route of regailing the entire restaurant with your fave sex story will possibly ruin the experience for the table next to you, so engage in a little dinnertime etiquette, even though it’s brunchtime.
Arrange for lots of buddies to join you at your champagne brunch
I tried a champagne brunch for two at the Aria in Las Vegas once. Not only was the service lacking and the price ostentatious, it just wasn’t as fun when I didn’t have a crowd to surround myself with.
In contrast, when you go with a group, the conversations bounces with ease, and you find yourself experiencing a party of sorts. Arranging for lots of your mates to join you might take a little organizing, but it’s well worth it when you’re all reminiscing about times gone by and catching up on what’s happening in each other’s lives.
Read reviews online before making a booking
Finally, on the note of the whole Aria thing, had I done my research I would’ve realized that handing over an extortionate amount for a subpar experience was on the horizon. We all know this, but I’ll remind you anyway: TripAdvisor exists.
Read reviews and soak them in. Don’t let the odd bad egg throw you off, but if a restaurant is routinely receiving negative feedback, move onto another venue. This is your champagne brunch experience, after all, so make sure the money you’re throwing at it is worth its while.
Are you a fan of a particular champagne brunch? Share it in the comments so we can all benefit.