10 Restaurants for Mother’s Day Brunch in Philadelphia

The real gift you can give on Mother's Day? Making a plan so Mom doesn't have to.

A Mother’s Day brunch seafood tower? Yes, please. / Photograph courtesy of Parc Rittenhouse

Why is brunch the official meal of Mother’s Day? I have no idea, it’s simply the law. My mom doesn’t live in Philadelphia, but, if she did, you better believe we’d be going to brunch this Mother’s Day. If you happen to have a local mom, it’s time to make a reservation for your annual Sunday brunch. (Yes, the holiday is soon. May 8th, to be exact — go mark your calendar.) If you’re a mom, I give you permission to passive-aggressively send this list to your child. If you happen to be far from your mom, I’m with you — maybe we’ll still drink some mimosas, though? Here are the brunch spots to consider, regardless of your Mother’s Day situation.

JG SkyhighCenter City
There is nothing that my mom likes more than a view, so Jean-Georges’ bar on the 60th floor of the Comcast Technology Center is a natural option. It’s glitzy, it’s fancy, and it has inarguably the best view of Philadelphia. Sure, the restaurant might not be serving the most inventive brunch in the city, but with French toast, eggs Benedict, mimosas, and that view, a mom will feel appropriately feted here. Brunch is served from 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. Reservations available here1 North 19th Street

ForsythiaOld City
If your mom fancies herself a bit of world traveler (or fancies herself someone who likes to travel but hasn’t gone anywhere in too many years), take her to Forsythia for their special $80 prix fixe French brunch. This is not your classic French bistro brunch: dishes include a niçoise salad with saffron potatoes, bagna càuda, and a six-minute egg, and a yuzu curd tart with blueberries, poppy seed crémeux, and lavender. Brunch will be served from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. with reservations available through Resy233 Chestnut Street

Stir at the Philadelphia Museum of ArtFairmount
In my experience, the real gift to a mom on Mother’s Day is someone else making the plan. That plan should include a brunch reservation at Stir followed by an afternoon at the PMA. If you’ve never been, Stir is the museum’s sit-down restaurant with a pretty nice wine list. The space is lovely and the food is surprisingly better than what you might expect from a museum restaurant. Their Mother’s Day menu has specials like an herb-topped French omelet, blueberry ricotta pancakes, and a fancy granola bowl. The menu will be served 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. with reservations available here. 2600 Benjamin Franklin Parkway

I love Parc. I’m not sure there’s anyone in Philadelphia who doesn’t love Parc. Which means brunch is sure to be absolutely slammed on Mother’s Day. To avoid the crowds, I’d recommend making a 3 p.m. reservation, spending the morning shopping nearby, and then finishing things off with a couple of drinks and seafood tower. Reservations here227 South 18th Street

Rowhome CoffeeFitler Square
If your mom is the kind of person who would rather go for a long walk on Mother’s Day than have a big fancy brunch, consider a stroll on the Schuylkill River Trail starting with (or followed by) a breakfast sandwich and cappuccino from Rowhome Coffee. This casual cafe uses soft pretzels for the bun on their egg sandwiches, and you can’t do much better in terms of the location before a nice riverside walk. 2536 Pine Street

Jezabel’sWest Philly
For another calm mom hang, go to Jezabel’s for tea, coffee, empanadas, pastries, soup, and salads. This daytime spot serves Northwestern Argentine food and has everything you need if you’re looking to sit in a sunny window and have a lengthy heart-to-heart with your mom (or, more likely, just catch up on the family gossip.) As an added bonus, no reservations are necessary. 206-208 South 45th Street

Talula’s GardenWashington Square West
Talula’s Garden is a classic mom spot. It’s cute, it’s fun, the food is great, and the garden is gorgeous. What else could you (or the mom in your life) possibly want? Sunday brunch is served 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Reservations here210 West Washington Square

Ray’s CafeChinatown
Ray’s Cafe is, in my opinion, one of the best kept secrets in Philadelphia. It’s a small, family-run cafe and restaurant where you and your mom can explore the selection of siphon coffees and Taiwanese teas over dumplings. If your mom appreciates any combination of tea, coffee, and Taiwanese beef noodle soup, this is the spot to take her. No reservations. 141 North 9th Street

Cantina La MartinaKensington
When I see chilaquiles listed on a brunch menu, I always order them (with or without my mom). The newly-opened Cantina La Martina does a great version with your choice of salsa verde, roja, or mole. They also serve an Italian-ish version by adding burrata, which is both genius and diabolical. Brunch runs on Sundays from 11 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Reservations here. 2800 D Street

Booker’s Restaurant, West Philly
Booker’s is one of only a few restaurants in Philly that serves brunch every day, which make them absolute experts in the category. If your mom wants to go somewhere friendly and casual where she can choose between brunch classics like pancakes and eggs and lunchier items like burgers and shrimp and grits, this is the spot. The brunch menu is served from 10 a.m. to 2:15 p.m. Reservations here5021 Baltimore Avenue