Flowers, jewelry, chocolate, massage certificates… the classic Mother’s Day present bundle. But apparently none of those trump brunch. Sorry, those meandering lines and crowds around your favorite locales don’t lie, and on her day, what us children want the most for Mom is a ticket out of the kitchen, effectively making Mother’s Day the most popular holiday for dining out. To help you on your quest for the perfect place to consume with Mom (and to help keep your loving relationship intact) we’ve compiled a list of places offering brunch and specials on Mother’s Day in Marin. Take a look, make your choice and pick up the phone and call — or starting tapping it — for a reservation. Best of luck to you.
Buckeye Roadhouse (brunch starts at 10:30 a.m.)
Anything from the on-site smoker is worth sampling (looking at you, Buckeye smoked chicken) and walk-ins are welcome to grab a seat on the patio. The menu will feature some additions but there is no buffet.
Bungalow 44 (service from 5 p.m.)
Yes, Bungalow’s famous 5 o’clock happy hour $1 oysters are available until 6 p.m. for moms and every day. The regular menu is in effect but word on the street is that every mom should have try the hamachi poppers on Mother’s Day.
Cavallo Point (10 a.m. – 12 p.m. [first seating], 12:30 p.m. –2:30 p.m. [second seating])
Fill Mom’s day with joy and treat her to a very special brunch for the whole family at Cavallo Point. Guests will delight in a delectable buffet in the Tidewater Room, featuring a wide selection of delicious brunch dishes along with a complimentary mimosa for Mom and Dad. $110 adults, $55 kids ages 4 – 12. Kids 3 and under are complimentary. Reservations required.
Copita (service from 11 a.m. to 9:30 p.m.)
This year, along with Birriaquiles (a.k.a. chilaquiles made with birria, a spicy goat stew from the Jalisco region), enfrijoladas or huevos rancheros, all women will receive a complimentary strawberry rosé sangria.
Fast Food Francais (brunch starts at 10 a.m.)
An omelette with ratatouille and black pepper chevre will add a French spark to the day but the croque Madame with béchamel and Emmental or the Alp Burger with raclette are decidedly cheesy in a decadent way. Reservations recommended.
Harmony (brunch from 11 a.m. to 2:30 pm)
Nothing says brunch quite like Shanghai dumplings or glazed spare ribs, part of Harmony’s regular menu but extra-special when ordered for Mom.
Le Garage (brunch 10 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.)
The crispy panisse scented with vadouvan hearkens to southern France while the quiche Lorraine, studded with smoked bacon and sweet onions recalls an earlier era of cooking entirely. Reservations recommended.
Mountain Home Inn (breakfast from 8 a.m. – 10:45 a.m., all-day menu from 11:30 a.m. – 7 p.m.)
The classic eggs Benedict is even better on the patio with views all the way to the bay but the fried fish po-boy and bratwurst with sauerkraut taste even better after a hike with Mom on Mount Tam.
Piazza D’Angelo (brunch starts at 10:30 a.m.)
The spring onions and cherry tomatoes in the omelette a la Caprese fairly shout that spring is here but the fresh pastas and gluten-free menu invite moms and their gluten-averse kin to the table.
Playa (service begins at 11 a.m.)
Honor Moms who like to sleep in with all-day brunch at Playa. A seat on the sun-dappled back patio is great for people-watching while noshing a few tacos or a Tijuana Caesar.
Poggio (breakfast begins at 6:30 a.m.; lunch at 11:30 a.m.; dinner at 5:30)
The extensive caffe menu paired with a frittata or house made Liege waffle suggests the European continent and the traditional complimentary gardenia guarantees a mom-size smile.
Sam’s Anchor Café (brunch 9:30 a.m. to 2 p.m.)
Whether on the patio or seated in the refreshed interior, the brunch menu at Sam’s includes smoked salmon Benedict and killer chilaquiles but don’t forget the restaurant’s famous Ramos Gin Fizz.
Seafood Peddler (brunch service begins at 11 a.m.)
The habanero-prawn Bloody Mary is a meal unto itself but the lump crab cakes with lobster sauce at the heart of the Peddler Benedict deserve a category all their own.
Sweetwater Music Hall (brunch 9:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.)
Live music on the patio is reason enough to head to this casual café in downtown Mill Valley but the menu of seasonal eats, like a spring herbs and vegetables salad and a market fish taco, appeals to Marinites of all shapes and sizes.
The Trident (brunch from 10:30 a.m.)
Like the San Francisco-facing deck, The Trident cioppino is a draw, no matter the time of day, but the Trident croissant with scrambled eggs and cheese, horseradish deviled eggs with fresh crab, and baby kale and quinoa salad appeal to Moms at every stage of motherhood.
Tiburon Tavern (seatings at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m.)
The chef’s seafood bar with mussels, ceviche, and shrimp will grab any seafood-lover’s attention as will the unlimited mimosas and local cheese display but the waffle station with M&M’s and chocolate chips and flank steak with gravy, among many other options at the buffet suggest family-wide appeal. $72 / Adults, $30 / Kids ages 6 – 12. Kids 5 and under are complimentary. Reservations strongly recommended.
Whisk + Skillet (brunch from 7 a.m. – 4 p.m.)
The order at the counter style ensures a casual vibe but the house made biscuits, with or without gravy, eggs, and spinach, are an all-day draw.
FarmShop, (10:30 AM to 3:00 PM)
They will offer a full brunch menu, featuring a Dungeness Crab Frittata and “Momosas”!
Insalata’s (brunch 9:30 a.m. – 2:30 p.m.)
The veggie platter of lemony lentils, seasonal vegetables and couscous and shakshouka (two eggs in spicy tomato sauce) may not be as well known as the salmon with Venetian pine nut relish. But it should be. $44 / Adults, $24 / Kids ages 12 and under. Reservations strongly recommended.
L’Appart Resto (dinner from 5 to 8:30 p.m.)
The filet of sole with meunière sauce and roasted almonds and Burgundian style escargot are classic dishes from the French culinary cannon but the lamb burger with arugula salad and paella with seasonal vegetables explores the country’s broader influences. Reservations recommended.
Left Bank Brasserie (brunch 10 a.m. – 3 p.m., dinner 3 p.m. to 10 p.m.)
Each prix fixe will feature selections from the regular dinner menu as well as holiday specials. For brunch, a $35 two-course prix fixe will feature Crêpes Florentine au Jambon, ham and spinach crêpes with Gruyère Mornay sauce and a sunny side up egg; Berries and Cream, a puff pastry with crème fraiche and seasonal berries; and Polenta Printanier, sausage polenta with peas, asparagus, spring onions and a sunny side up egg. The dinner prix fixe, $55.00, will include three courses and feature a 6 oz. Filet Mignon with potato gratin, grilled asparagus and sauce Périgourdine; Pan Roasted Alaskan Halibut with fava beans, roasted butterball potatoes, and a sun dried tomato, black pepper and mint butter; and Lamb Navarin, braised lamb shoulder and spring vegetables. Prices exclude beverages, tax and gratuity.
The Melting Pot (service from 11:30 a.m. – 8:30 p.m.)
You can get a classic rye Manhattan and the set four-course fondue experience includes salad, a cheese fondue, and either a meaty or vegetarian fondue along with chocolate fondue for dessert. $65/ Adults, $38 / Kids ages 12 and under (salad course not included). Reservations recommended.
Range Café and Grill at Peacock Gap Golf Club (brunch from 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.)
The bounteous Mother’s Day brunch buffet includes a carving station featuring grilled mahi mahi and roasted turkey, an omelet station, spring desserts and gelato, and more. Adults: $50; kids 13 and under $22. 10% discount for members. All Moms receive a complimentary glass of champagne and a rose.
Boca Tavern (brunch 11 a.m. – 2 p.m.; dinner 4:30 p.m. – 8 p.m.)
A special a la carte Sunday brunch menu is in effect for moms and includes country crepes and a classic eggs Benedict while dinner could be Boca’s famous rib eye or bouillabaisse with impossible to resist duck fat fries.
Finnegan’s Marin (service from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.)
Offering regular Sunday brunch fare, include eggs Benedict and florentine, special scrambles, make-your-own omelets, homemade biscuits and gravy, vanilla French toast, plus $.99 mimosas with a brunch order.
Hilltop 1892 (brunch 10 a.m. – 3 p.m. and dinner from 4:30 – 9 p.m.)
Spring brunch includes dishes just for mom such as baked eggs Mornay with spinach and Gruyere as well as favorites like huevos divorciados and a Monte Cristo sandwich. All day dessert specials include a strawberry tart encased in a chocolate shell and a full bar serving mimosas, Bloody Mary’s and the passion fruit Ramos Fizz.
HopMonk Tavern (service from 11:30 a.m. – 9 p.m.)
You can always eat a locally made currywurst with one of the many on-tap beers but 4 p.m.– 6 p.m. brings an opportunity to learn the art of flower arranging in an on-site class. A glass of wine or beer is included and you and Mom can take home your creation.
The Club Restaurant at McInnis Park (brunch from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.)
Paella with saffron rounds out a carving station buffet of baked ham, lamb, roast beef, salmon, and Italian sausage while an omlette bar, buffet of club favorites including salads, shrimp Louie and Danish is topped only by the dessert station (there will be pie). Mimosas and Bloody Mary’s are just a few of the day’s special drinks. Adults: $38.95; kids 10 and under $18.95.
Toast (service from 8 a.m. – 8 p.m.)
A breakfast pizza with bacon and eggs and crepes stuffed with smoked salmon or Nutella are morning pleasers while the extensive salad menu and famous Reuben with 1000 island and sauerkraut are dinner winners.
Marin Audubon Mother’s Day Picnic (gates at 11 a.m., lunch served from 12 p.m. – 2 p.m.)
This low-key affair is a buffet (grilled chicken and veggie quiche with salad, beans, and bread) under the trees of the old orchard at the Marin Audubon Society’s Volunteer Canyon in Stinson Beach. Explore the creek, take a guided nature hike, or simply enjoy the natural beauty of the scene. All proceeds support education and conservation programs at Audubon Canyon Ranch. Adults: $30; kids 12 and under $10. Reservations required.
Nick’s Cove (service from 11 a.m. – 8 p.m.)
Nick’s Cove will be serving several specialty dishes including house cured lox, a prosciutto & Croft spinach quiche, as well as a grilled chicken and brie sandwich. Other dishes Moms would surely love are the restaurant’s famous cioppino, the Croft chard salad and white prawn enchiladas. In addition to the menu, Nick’s is rolling out a new BYOB (Build Your Own Bouquet) experience. Flower bouquets are sourced from the on-site gardens are available in two sizes, and the ingredients will reflect the seasonal changes in the gardens. $30/small, $50/large, plus optional $30/tour.
Rancho Nicasio (brunch 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., dinner 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.)
The robust offerings include a smoked salmon and bagel platter, honey glazed baked Petaluma ham, chicken chilaquiles as well as cheesecake, lemon bars and brownies. $32 for adults, $30 for seniors (65+), and $18 for children under ten. Reservations recommended.
Saltwater Oyster Depot (service from 12 p.m. – 9 p.m.)
Oysters on the half shell, with local and Pacific Coast-sourced options are de rigueur but for a change of pace, have your seafood-loving Mom dig into the broiled oyster options like preserved lemon and pink peppercorn or the yellowtail conserva with sugar snap peas and fennel.
Sir & Star at the Olema (dinner from 5 p.m. – 9 p.m.)
Local sourcing, almost all from Marin, defines the menu at this grand dame at the foot of Tomales Bay. For Mother’s Day, an ode to spring may include faux gras from local duck livers or a salad of whatever is harvested that day at Marin Roots Farm. The house made bread and honey butter are fan favorites.
Station House Café (breakfast 8 a.m. – 11 a.m.; lunch 11 a.m. – 3 p.m.; dinner 5 p.m. – 9 p.m.)
Nothings says “Mom” quite like a breakfast of oysters and bubbly, but the Hangtown Fry “omelet” and Steelhead salad are a paleo-lovers dream. The restaurant will also be serving their popovers at dinner which includes live music from Jon Otis runs, from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Tony’s Seafood (service from 11:30 a.m. – 8 p.m.)
The fried oyster po-boy places the humble bivalve between a puffy bun while the peel and eat Gulf shrimp with Old Bay court bouillon is perfect for Moms who like to eat with their hands. No reservations accepted for groups smaller than 12 persons.