Top five gluten-free brunch spots

Frances Speer is a Grade A food-lover. She loves to eat and to cook, and to talk and to write about eating and cooking.

When she was diagnosed with coeliac disease it was goodbye beer and pasta, hello buckwheat and rice flour. But she doesn’t let it get her down. Instead of focussing on what she can’t have she gets excited about all the incredibly delicious things she can eat.

Her Cake For Breakfast blog and Instagram reflect her balanced approach to enjoying food. “Cake for Breakfast is an attitude,” she says. “It’s refusing to invite moral judgements along to breakfast, lunch or dinner and it’s bringing back excitement and happiness around food.”

This early bird needs breakfast before brunch (“does that make it lunch?”). She likes brunch menus that are “a bit quirky and brave and offer more than your average eggs on toast”. Coffee is essential of course, “Any place serving good and bottomless (preferably Supreme) filter coffee has my heart.”

Frances’ top five gluten-free brunch picks

Smashed peas and avocado
Field & Green
This is the kind of food I could happily eat every day. Field & Green’s smashed peas and avocado is delicately fragrant with lemon and comes with an expertly poached egg. I have it with their delightful gluten-free crackers (their genius solution to the gluten-free-bread-sucks conundrum). I’d quite happily spend all of my house-buying money on F&G’s smashed avo.

French toast
Egmont Street Eatery
One of Welly’s most inventive brunch menus is at Egmont St Eatery and best of all, they can make most of their menu gluten-free. Their coconut bread French toast comes sandwiched with lemon curd, blackberries and torched meringue. It’s decadent, it’s borderline dessert and it’s my idea of a good time – my blog isn’t called Cake for Breakfast for nothing.

Build your own brekkie
Hillside Kitchen
Here’s how to do it: you and your dining companions each order truffle fried eggs, potato and kumara hash and bacon, then a couple of sides to share. I suggest housemade sauerkraut and some creamed spinach, and a couple of coffees each. Follow with a restorative walk through the nearby Botanic Gardens.

Smoked mackerel potato hash and poached egg
Floriditas are veterans of the Wellington brunch scene and their quintessential menu has your every breakfast/lunch hybrid need covered. Despite the menu scope I tend to go with my old favourite: smoked mackerel, potato and herb hash with a poached egg. I challenge you to settle your bill without giving in and buying a cakey something for later.

A Yodi bagel and an iced maple
Best Ugly Bagels
One of Al Brown’s beaut little uglies and an iced maple coffee will cure what ails you. The Yodi bagel has everything you need from a curative food stuff: salty pastrami, kicky habanero mustard, tangy pickles and lots of cheese. I apologise in advance for your new-found iced maple habit: the Havana coffees laced with maple syrup are addictively good.

By Laura Pitcher and Francesca Emms

Featured in Capital #43
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