In undergrad, I don’t remember ever waking up on a Saturday and/or Sunday and rounding everyone up to indulge in a little hair of the dog and over-priced breakfast foods, otherwise known as brunch. For one, our lingering intoxication was probably enough to last us until it was time to get around and start pre-gaming again for the night ahead; two, no one could afford a brunch that consisted of anything more than drive-thru fare and whatever beer was leftover from the previous night’s rager; and three, when you’re hitting up bar specials upwards of 6 nights a week, you have to dry out at some point, or at least you should. Although, on a perfect sunny day, you may send a mass text, calling everyone to ditch class and skip on down to the nearest booze-serving patio to indulge in some vitamin D and, um, whatever vitamins can be found in your drink(s) of choice, we didn’t call it “brunch.” As I wipe the tear away from eye, because those days of exercising free will are long gone, I realize that impromptu weekday patio time has been replaced by weekend brunching.
Maybe it’s because I grew up in a small town, but I always thought brunch was something you did on vacation. I remember doing it once in high school while on a family vaca to Hawaii. Upon sneaking and gulping down my fourth glass of champagne all before 11:30 a.m., I fell in love with the idea. Of course undergrad followed, where the closest thing to brunch, besides the patio time referenced above, was filling up a styrofoam cup you took from the gas station with a full bottle of Cook’s champagne and a splash of orange juice for breakfast on game days (FYI, this is still a current habit, but that’s beside the point). Then came private big(ger) city grad school where I started to notice that Sunday Funday consisted of nice boozy outings to decently respectable places instead scouring leftover melted ice chests for beer remnants and sitting on the front porch of your personal version of Animal House, walk-of-shame gazing. Now, postgrad, brunching is at an all time high. When you’re having to cram in all of your party time to a measly 48-hour period, any excuse to get hammered (as if you really need one, you worked damn hard all week and deserve to get brown-out without judgment) for the entire duration of your tiny little break from big kid world is welcomed, not to mention, you can semi-afford to class your day-drinking up a bit.
There are two words that one should always search for when seeking out potential brunch locales: Bottomless. Mimosas. If it’s $2 mimosas, which isn’t totally horrible, I’ll spend approximately $24 on those little guys alone, because really, a champagne glass holds about 2.5 drinks if you’re doing it right. I’m also huge fan of Bloody Mary bars, buffets, and no dress code. If you think I’m rolling up to brunch in anything other than yoga pants, a horrendous ponytail/bun creation, and oversized sunglasses that at no point shall be removed, you are very very incorrect.
The time of day you do brunch is also important, as it sets the tone of your day, considering once you start drinking again, you know damn well you aren’t stopping until it’s pass-out time. There’s the 11 am-er, which is always too early for my blood, although technically it’s the traditional brunch time, hence combining the words “breakfast” and “lunch. If you do this, you will most likely be in bed by 9pm because you’ve been day-drinking for 10 hours; any further and you will just be drinking yourself sober, aka: your body becomes immune to any additional alcohol you’d like to force-feed it. There’s 2pm brunch, which is really my fav if I want to day-rage. You’ve been able to get a little more much needed sleep and derive the energy that is needed for staying power. This ensures you’ll still get at least some nighttime action in addition to your afternoon making onlookers hate you out of jealousy because they really just came to that restaurant to eat, and now have to return home and be the responsible adult that we have not yet desired to become. Maybe it’s just me, but I also enjoy a nice evening brunch; some people might just call that dinner, but it’s my brunch because I haven’t been out of yet bed that day due to the previous night’s activities, and am indulging in mimosas and Bloody Mary’s at 8 pm. Side note: In my brunching escapades, I’ve also discovered what is called the “colossal mimosa.” Think a Corona-rita, but instead of a beer turned upside-down in a marg, is a baby bottle of André turned upside down into chalice of orange juice. It really is something, and I’m sitting here contemplating just how big I could go with this contraption as we speak.
No matter where, when or how you prefer to brunch, you should definitely do it regularly. Just as the weekday freedoms we once knew disappeared, I’m terrified that one day the freedom to fill our entire weekend pretending we’re still in college will too disappear.