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Brunch Roundup: Go beyond standard bloody marys and bottomless mimosas at these local favorites

Brunch Roundup: Go beyond standard bloody marys and bottomless mimosas at these local favorites
March 2023

Discover a bounty of options ranging from classic breakfast fare to nontraditional options like Jackrabbit Filly’s Dim Sum Sunday Brunch

The crave-worthy benne seed pancakes and bavette steak with sunny-side-up eggs and horseradish at Vern’s. 

Since opening last summer, this Elliotborough spot has quickly become a favorite, thanks to Dano and Bethany Heinz’s innovative approach to local fare. Brunch echoes the dinner menu with a tight list of delicious seasonal gems, such as house-made gravlax accompanied by lime yogurt and grilled sourdough toast topped with yellowfin crudo or a classic steak and eggs dusted in horseradish. But the dish that’s garnered the most love might just be the benne seed pancakes. Light and supremely fluffy, they come with whipped ricotta and a seasonal fruit—apples, pears, or berries—and speak to the local West African culinary influence. Pair with an innovative cocktail or an effervescent natural wine, and you’ve got yourself a brunch worth getting out of bed for. 41 Bogard St.,

Look for specials like classic fried chicken sandwich at Little Line.

Little Line Kitchen & Provisions
In downtown’s Westside neighborhood, this tiny jewel of a café is tucked into a storefront just off Ashley Avenue. During the week, morning meals focus on simple breakfast sandwiches, bagels imported from Brooklyn, bacon, and grits. Come the weekend, the menu expands for a more leisurely pace with specials like the kimchi fried rice bowl with farm eggs, Brown’s Court sticky buns, buttermilk biscuits, and omelets, the latter served with perfectly crispy and utterly addictive fries. Don’t miss the fried chicken sandwiches (including a vegan version) on brioche. Seating is limited inside, but sidewalk tables and a small outdoor patio are perfect for sunny Sunday mornings. Beer and wine are served, as well as Mimosas in Bed, a menu item geared for to-go orders to recreate a boozy brunch at home with a bottle of brut and OJ. 176 Line St.,

A sampling of the Dim Sum Sunday Brunch menu at Jackrabbit Filly: spicy tuna tostada, and stuffed peppers in black bean pork sauce.

Jackrabbit Filly
For some, brunch means replacing workaday bacon and eggs with something fancy like eggs Benedict. At this North Charleston Asian fusion eatery, chef and co-owner Shuai Wang turns the concept on its ear with a dim sum menu that will have you craving dumplings and scallion pancakes at the crack of dawn. Here, biscuits and gravy are made with scallions and buttermilk and smothered in Japanese curry. There’s no chicken and waffles, but Sichuan Hot Karaage, crispy Japanese fried chicken with spicy chili oil and pickles. Instead of oatmeal, find congee—a rice porridge enhanced with savory flavors of lap cheong (Chinese sausage), dashi, and radish. Our advice: bring a group and sample as many dishes as you can. 4628 Spruill Ave., North Charleston;

Tucked in Hotel Emeline off Market Street, Frannie & the Fox offers up many wood-fired favorites, including pizzas, baked eggs in tomato sauce, and hanger steak and eggs.

Frannie & The Fox
This tony restaurant within Hotel Emeline offers classic brunch service, with an Italian wood-fired twist. There’s eggs Benedict with a house-cured pork loin, as well as a traditional breakfast plate with eggs, toast, bacon, and hash browns, but it’s the Italian-influenced dishes that are the stars here. Think tender meatballs, wood oven-baked eggs nestled in a savory tomato sauce with plenty of sourdough for dipping, and wood-fired pizza. The fingerling potato and garlic pie with scallion, mozzarella, pecorino, and egg yolk is a standout. If sweet is more your style, opt for the giant sweet potato cinnamon roll with cream cheese icing or the fluffy cornmeal and buttermilk pancakes slathered with sorghum butter and maple syrup. As for drinks, they have classics like bloody marys and espresso, but it’s the giant punch bowls shared at the table that take this brunch over the top. 181 Church St.,

(Left) Lost Dog Cafe’s Southern Style BLT is a palate pleaser with fried green tomatoes, bacon, and pimiento cheese. (Right) Canine friends are welcome on the patio.

Lost Dog Cafe
This Folly Beach institution has been serving breakfast and lunch every day for 20 years, give or take a few. The expansive menu offers a little something for everyone, served up with a laid-back attitude that suits the setting. Before hitting the beach, sup on bagels, breakfast burritos, and freshly baked muffins. Or hang on the patio with your pooch and a spicy bloody mary. There’s no judgment here, just good vibes and good food. Menu highlights include shrimp and grits, French toast, and biscuits with homemade sausage gravy. On the lunchier side, find salads, BLTs, and burgers. They also have an excellent coffee program and a perfect cup of hot chocolate for the kiddos. 106 W. Huron Ave., Folly Beach;

The sunny dining room at Community Table in I’On; their Ultimate Bloody Mary (right)—bedecked with hard-boiled egg, bacon, shrimp, asparagus, fried chicken, steak, French fries, onion rings, and olives—is a meal in itself.

Community Table
This gathering place in I’On reflects its neighborhood, offering a cozy and comfortable dining room along with porches and sidewalk tables. A mix of ground short rib, brisket, and chuck make for a satisfying burger, while the Cobb salad adds shrimp, chicken, and roasted corn to artisan greens. Steamed mussels sit happily alongside butternut and burrata toast on the shared plate menu. The mushroom and Gruyère omelette comes paired with crisp home fries, and the French toast is piled high with caramelized bananas, candied pecans, smoky bacon, and whipped cream. Want to drink your breakfast? Splurge on the Ultimate Bloody Mary, which comes stuffed with skewered bites of hard-boiled egg, bacon, shrimp, asparagus, fried chicken, steak, French fries, onion rings, and olives. 148 Civitas St., Mount Pleasant;