Brunch Bites: New Year's Day Edition

Seeing as many people are off work (and potentially hungover) on New Year's Day, it makes for the perfect excuse for mid-week brunch. For this special edition of mid-week brunch bites, several restaurants are open and slinging morning fare on New Year's Day to help kick start 2014 on a delicious note.

LUXBAR brunch
(LUXBAR brunch)

For the first time ever, GT Fish & Oyster is serving brunch on New Year's Day. If you're at all familiar with GT's special brand of brunch fare, you know this is a big deal, and not to be missed. That means churros, monkey bread, house-cured gravlax, smoked whitefish quiche, shrimp & grits, and all the other goodies, conveniently served to temper your hangover and beckon the new year on a high note.

Ring in 2014 on a luxurious note at LUXBAR. The Gold Coast gem welcomes the new year in style with a variety of brunch dishes starting bright and early on January 1. Sop up the previous evening's booze with Belgian waffles, cinnamon pancakes, breakfast burritos, house-cured Skuna Bay salmon Benedict, skirt steak and eggs, and more. The restaurant will also be airing the college bowl game on its 42-inch flat-screens.

Delish Diner is doling out specials all day on New Year's Day, including aptly named omelettes such as the Hangover Relief filled with bacon, sausage, ham, green pepper, onions, and cheddar; and the New Year Resolution with broccoli, spinach, mushrooms, tomatoes, and onions. Brunch cocktails include Bloody Marys for $4 a pop, screwdrivers, and mimosas.

In a rare turn of events, Howells & Hood is offering its Sunday Blues Brunch on Wednesday. It's the same mix of live, jazzy music and decadent brunch buffet grub that the Michigan Avenue restaurant is known for, but extra special because it's New Year's Day and there is no better way to inaugurate a new year than with blues and brunch.

Frontier is serving brunch until 2:00 p.m. on New Year's Day. It's the barstaurant's first ever "speakeasy brunch," complete with a literal bathtub full of gin. Look for brunch favorites such as beignets, smoked bacon and cheddar biscuits, bananas Foster French toast, and fried rabbit and waffles.

Hangover brunch sounds like just the ticket for New Year's Day, and it's on the docket at Jake Melnick's Corner Tap. The brunch menu at this River North bar bastion is chock full of booze-healing comfort foods such as chorizo and egg nachos, brisket hash skillet, crispy French toast, and the "epic hangover burger," striated with bacon, grilled pit ham, American cheese, Swiss, fried eggs, and maple-mustard aïoli. In case you're still thirsty for liquor, Jake has you covered with the likes of Bloody Marys, mimosas on tap (!). and something called the XXX Mary. Bodes well.

City Tavern kicks off the new year with bacon pancakes, Southern Benedicts, shrimp hash, pork schnitzel, foie and bacon sandwiches, and loads more on New Year's Day. It's all courtesy of new executive chef Amanda Barnes, serving up brunch fare from 10:30 a.m. until 3:00 p.m. on January 1. Keep the Champagne binge going with bottomless mimosas for an additional $25.