Whether it’s an opportunity to enjoy quality time with the family, relish the arrival of springtime, or indulge in a lavish meal after Lent, Easter brunch is a very popular and festive occasion by longstanding tradition. Between fancy prix fixes, heavily laden buffets and endless platters of sweets, restaurants seem to be making up for the 40 days of deprivation that their post-Lenten customers might have endured. Here are eight fantastic spots around town for celebrating on Easter Sunday.
Ray’s Boathouse – Ballard
Enjoying its 40th anniversary this year, the newly renovated Ray’s offers not only a sumptuous Easter brunch and dinner buffet for $40 in the café area, but $30 and $40 plated brunch menus in the Boathouse as well. Famous for its seafood, Ray’s features plenty of crab, salmon and shellfish in its generous buffet, as well as a carving station with prime rib and ham. Executive chef Wayne Johnson also showcases seafood on the Boathouse menus, with choices such the Dungeness crab Louis salad and the “Puget Sound Hangtown Fry” with Pacific oysters, salmon and house bacon served with a cornmeal muffin.
Copperleaf Restaurant at Cedarbrook Lodge – SeaTac
Cedarbrook’s executive chef Mark Bodinet has been delighting with his commitment to sustainability and farm-to-table cuisine. For Easter, Cedarbrook is serving an extravagant buffet in Tamarack Hall with made-to-order omelets, a carving station with prime rib and lamb, seafood galore, plus a dessert bonanza including a Snoqualmie Ice Cream bar, for $52 per person. At Cedarbrook’s Copperleaf Restaurant, diners can opt for Bodinet’s $52 four-course prix fixe menu, featuring Nash Family Farm rabbit and Theo’s chocolate sorbet for dessert.
Aqua by El Gaucho – Belltown
At Aqua, both the spectacular Elliot Bay views and the Easter menu are to be heartily recommended. Executive chef Steve Cain couldn’t have come up with a richer menu. The savory dishes come slathered with creamy sauces and stuffed with succulent seafood or meat, like the Angus beef tenderloin eggs Benedict or the Kodiak omelet with halibut, bay shrimp and Dungeness crab, while items like the crème brûlée French toast will satisfy your sweet tooth. If you’re going to break a Lenten fast, you might as well do it properly.
Rione XIII – Capitol Hill
Chef Brandon Kirksey at Rione XIII–Ethan Stowell’s homage to the simple, delicious cuisine of Rome—offers special savory brunch selections this Sunday, from Italian-inspired egg dishes such as poached duck eggs with rapini, tomato and sabayon, to pasta, pizza and meat options. Linger over a wild mushroom frittata with nettle pesto or a prosciutto, arugula and egg pizza and sip at a special Easter cocktail such as “The Late Riser,” with Prosecco, St. Germain and fresh grapefruit juice.
Sazerac – Downtown
At swanky Sazerac next to the Hotel Monaco, executive chef Jason McClure has planned a gorgeous $48.95 brunch buffet that, true to his reputation, combines fresh Pacific Northwest ingredients with a Southern zing. Enjoy Creole eggs Benedict and housemade andouille as well as Victoria Island asparagus with goat cheese, almonds and peppers by Mama Lil’s. The obligatory Dungeness crab dish: crab cakes with lemon aioli.
bin on the lake – Kirkland
Enjoy sweeping Lake Washington views and bacon, plenty of bacon, at the Woodmark Hotel. From the bacon beignets with a maple anglaise to the bacon and biscuits to the Double R Ranch New York strip with a fried egg and slab bacon, chef Dylan Giordan’s menu shows a definite predilection for crispy pork. Non-pork offerings (yes, there are some) include a black truffle scramble and (reliably) a Dungeness crab omelette with asparagus and mint.
Volunteer Park Cafe – North Capitol Hill
Pair a leisurely brunch with a springtime wander through North Capitol Hill’s favorite park. In addition to the usual homey breakfast and lunch menu, pastry chef Emily Weeks is preparing whimsical Easter-themed sweets, from colored egg and bunny cookies to birds’ nest cupcakes and that quintessential Good Friday treat, hot cross buns.
Monsoon – Capitol Hill
Since local eateries appear not to offer many Dungeness crab options, Monsoon steps in to fill the void. As a delicious extension to its seasonal Crab Feast—a two-pound Dungeness crab offered for $32 on Sunday and Monday evenings—the restaurant will serve half a chilled crab with brown butter dipping sauce for $18 for Easter brunch. The special is available in addition to Monsoon’s usual inventive menu, which integrates Vietnamese flavors with traditional brunch fare with items such as lemongrass mimosas and coriander pork belly with coconut rice “grits.”