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Subject: Food, Full breakfast, Lunch, History of breakfast, Merienda
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Brunch items
Brunch items from Kalaset restaurant in Copenhagen, Denmark

Brunch is a combination of breakfast and lunch eaten usually during the late morning but it can extend to as late as 3 pm on Sundays.[1][2] The word is a portmanteau of breakfast and lunch.[3] Brunch originated in England in the late 1800s, served in a buffet style manner, and became popular in the United States in the 1930s.[4]

Origin of the word

The 1896 supplement to the Oxford English Dictionary cites Punch magazine which wrote that the term was coined in Britain in 1895 to describe a Sunday meal for "Saturday-night carousers" in the writer Guy Beringer's article "Brunch: A Plea"[5] in Hunter's Weekly'[6]

It is sometimes credited to reporter Frank Ward O'Malley who wrote for the New York newspaper The Sun from 1906 until 1919,[8] allegedly based on the typical mid-day eating habits of a newspaper reporter.[9][10]

At colleges and hostels

Some colleges and hostels serve brunch, especially on Sundays and holidays. Such brunches are often serve-yourself buffets, but menu-ordered meals may be available instead of, or with, the buffet. The meal usually involves standard breakfast foods such as eggs, sausages, bacon, ham, fruits, pastries, pancakes, and the like.


The United States military often serves weekend brunch in the dining facilities. They offer both breakfast and lunch options and are open from about 0900-1300 (though times vary).

Dim sum brunch

The dim sum brunch is popular in Chinese restaurants worldwide.[11] It consists of a variety of stuffed buns, dumplings, and other savory or sweet food items that have been steamed, deep-fried, or baked. Customers pick small portions from passing carts, as the kitchen continuously produces and sends out more freshly prepared dishes. Dim sum is usually eaten at a mid-morning, midday, or mid-afternoon teatime.

Special occasions

Brunch is prepared by restaurants and hotels for special occasions, such as weddings, Valentine's Day, Mother's Day, or Easter Sunday.

In other languages

A brunch service


The Office québécois de la langue française accepts "brunch" as a valid word but also provides a synonym déjeuner-buffet. Note that, however, in Quebec, déjeuner alone (even without the qualifying adjective petit) means "breakfast".[12] In Quebec, the word—when Francized—is pronounced .[13]


German-speaking countries readily adopt Anglicisms, and "brunch" is no exception, defining it as "a combination of breakfast and lunch."[14]

In other cities

Dubai, United Arab Emirates

'Friday Brunch' is considered[15] something of an institution in Dubai. Many large hotels and restaurants offer an all inclusive drinks and food buffet during early afternoons, and large groups of expatriates and tourists make this the highlight of their weekend, with parties going on well into the night.


In many regions of Canada, in particular in Southern Ontario, brunch is popular on Sundays when families will often host relatives or friends in their dining room. The typical brunch can last a few hours and go late into the afternoon. Montreal-style bagels may be served alongside egg dishes, waffles or crepes, smoked meat or fish, fruit, salads, cheese, and dessert. Often, champagne or wine will be served and following the meal tea or coffee is usually consumed.

Many restaurants offer brunch service as well, and the Leslieville neighbourhood of Toronto is sometimes called the brunch capital of Toronto[16] as many renowned establishments serve brunch in that neighbourhood.

See also


  1. ^ Palmatier, Robert Alan (2000). Food: A Dictionary of Literal and Nonliteral Terms. Greenwood Press. p. 40.  
  2. ^ "brunch (meal)". Memidex/WordNet Dictionary. Retrieved 2011-07-25. 
  3. ^ "foodnetwork". Retrieved 2013-08-24. 
  4. ^ Rombauer, Irma S.; Becker, Marion Rombauer; Becker, Ethan (2001). Joy of Cooking: All About Breakfast and Brunch. Simon and Schuster. p. 8.  
  5. ^ Gold, David L. (2009). Studies in etymology and etiology. Universidad de Alicante. p. 99.  
  6. ^ Merriam-Webster's, Inc. (1994). Merriam-Webster's dictionary of English usage. Merrriam Webster. p. 203.  
  7. ^ By WILLIAM GRIMESPublished: July 08, 1998 (1998-07-08). "Grimes, William. "At Brunch, The More Bizarre The Better." ''The New York Times''. July 8, 1998". Retrieved 2013-08-24. 
  8. ^ "The Press: O'Malley of the Sun". Time Magazine. 31 Oct 1932. Retrieved 9 September 2011. 
  9. ^ "As to who coined the word brunch, that, too, is unclear. According to an American Dialect Society site, Frank Ward O'Malley, an old style reporter with the New York Morning Sun (1906–1919), was the first to use "brunch" to describe the morning newspaper man's breakfast-luncheon combination." Mother's Day and the history of "Brunch" – Thousands of Ontarians take their mothers to brunch on Mother's Day Travel TV
  10. ^ Pietrusza, David Rothstein: The Life, Times, and Murder of the Criminal Genius Google Books link 2007
  11. ^ "Dim Sum – History, Pictures, Recipes of Chinese Dim Sum". 2013-07-13. Retrieved 2013-08-24. 
  12. ^ Office de la langue française, 1999, 'Le Grand Dictionnaire, entry "Brunch": "Repas combinant le petit déjeuner et le repas du midi, et habituellement constitué d'un buffet". (A meal that combines the breakfast and lunch and usually consists of a buffet.)
  13. ^ La Petite Larousse (2009), p. 140
  14. ^ Brunch Deutsch Wiki entry on "brunch"
  15. ^ "Dubai's Outlandish Brunch Culture". Huffington Post. 2013-02-09. 
  16. ^ "Bonjour Brioche in Leslieville - My Destination Toronto". Retrieved 2013-08-24. 

External links

  • "The Birth of Brunch: Where Did This Meal Come From Anyway?"
  • Wikibooks Cookbook
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