Image via Creative Commons/ snowpea&bokchoi (CC BY 2.0)

I can understand why some people aren’t privy to the brunch scene. It’s often saturated with hungover yuppies rehashing the previous night’s shenanigans and that’s enough to diminish anyone’s appetite for fried chicken and waffles joined by a Bloody Mary or two.

The beauty of brunch, though, is that it’s transformative – it can be themed, held inside or on the patio, and bettered by live music and other performances. For me, brunch is best served with some light, funky jazz performed in the background.

There’s something visceral about jazz that aptly sets the tone for an early-to-mid Sunday morning nosh session. It’s not too loud or aggressive, it features legitimate instruments instead of auto-tuned vocals and it provides an old-school atmosphere in dining rooms that can’t be permeated with thick cigar smoke.

It’s soothing yet engaging. It’s comforting yet animated. It’s authentic yet familiar.

It’s jazz.

So to yelp you plan your weekend, and subsequent summer Sundays accordingly here are nine funky jazz brunch hotspots in and around Boston (in no particular order):

1. Ryles Jazz Club

Where: 212 Hampshire St, Cambridge

When: Sunday: Mandatory reservations – make one online here.


2. The Beehive

Where: 541 Tremont Street, South End, Boston

When: Saturday: 10:30 a.m. to 3 p.m; Sunday: 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.


3. Charles River Bistro

Where: Dr. Paul Dudley White Bike Path – Charles River Esplanade (next to the Hatch Shell)

When: Saturday Jazz Brunch & Sunday Soul Brunch: 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.


4. Foundry on Elm

Where: 255 Elm Street, Somerville

When: Sunday: 10:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.


5. Thelonious Monkfish

Where: 524 Mass Ave., Cambridge

When: Sunday: 12:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m.


6. Devlin’s

Where: 332 Washington Street, Brighton, Boston

When: Sunday: 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.


7. Darryl’s Corner Bar

Where: 604 Columbus Ave., South End, Boston

When: Sunday: 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.


8. Johnny D’s

Where: 17 Holland Street, Somerville

When: Saturday & Sunday: 9:45 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.


9. Lucky’s Lounge 

(Live Sinatra music, equally funky)


When: Saturday & Sunday: 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.