To really get to know a city and its atmosphere also requires that you experience the range of cuisines it has to offer. In Budapest, the tastes of the city can be sampled in haste – by grabbing a bite to eat between sights – or by way of the city’s more comfortable, elegant venues, where the setting dazzles and every meal is an exercise in indulgence. When planning your trip to the Hungarian capital, a Sunday brunch – whether for two, or for the entire family – is something worth making time for, not in the least because special lunch buffets are a standard of iconic restaurants situated in some of the most beautiful locations around the city.
What does a Sunday Brunch entail?
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In essence, a Sunday Brunch is an event held at lunch time on Sundays (regularly or nearly regularly), from approximately 12:00 to 3:00 p.m., for a fixed price per person. The food itself is served either as a buffet, or from a special menu. In Budapest, seating for a brunch must be reserved in advance due to a growing interest on the part of families in this more festive form of Sunday meal. And indeed, how glorious it is to wake up on a lazy Sunday morning and, following a light, sparing breakfast, stroll into a restaurant of your choosing, dressed to suit the venue and occasion, to partake of…. No, not “brinner,” but a real, multi-course Sunday family lunch eaten not in haste, but with the intent of indulging your taste buds with special culinary delights.
At the best of Budapest’s brunch restaurants – the Hilton Budapest, Gundel Restaurant, Danubius Hotel Gellért – guests are greeted by a buffet table that is truly extravagant. The format is, of course, “all you can eat,” allowing you to sample everything and consume as much as you like. And, not least importantly, unlimited food is accompanied by unlimited drinks from a selection offered specially for occasion.
As for the brunch dishes themselves, each establishment – without exception – serves an abundance of choices guaranteed to have you standing up from the table full and satisfied. All foods are prepared using the latest in culinary technology according to the most recent gastronomic trends. Menus are put together under the supervision of the hotels’ noted chefs with a mind to providing a gastronomic experience that is truly unforgettable.
Is Sunday Brunch Less Expensive than Choosing à la Carte?
The answer here is yes: compared to selecting and paying for your tempting entrées and accompanying beverages separately, the Sunday brunch’s unlimited food and drink format is one that goes light on your wallet. It is worth noting that in Budapest, Sunday Brunch events are geared toward families, with children receiving substantial discounts and – at restaurants like the Gellért – the services of a special children’s program coordinator. Restauranteurs know that children cannot sit quietly at a table for hours: that most will finish their meal in ten minutes, then want to play. In such cases, the entertaining programs and creative craft opportunities furnished by a children’s entertainer can be an enormous help, permitting children to spend time in quality pursuits while their parents enjoy a relaxed lunch and animated conversation over a glass of wine or cup of choice coffee.
Where is Sunday Brunch Served in Budapest?
In choosing a place for Sunday Brunch, you should not wait until the last moment, but make preparations a few days in advance: survey possible locales, check prices and menus, and – most importantly – reserve a table or purchase online admission to ensure that the elegant restaurant you have chosen will be able to accommodate you.
Though most Danubius hotels in Budapest offer Sunday Brunch deals, presented in detail here are the three most popular. The all-you-can-eat buffets of these illustrious restaurants are ones we are happy to recommend, and because their respective locations – the Buda Castle, City Park, and Danube Waterfront areas – are among the most beautiful in the city, a Sunday family lunch at any one of them can be combined with a stroll, outing, cultural event, or nature program.
Sunday Brunch at the Gellért
With its elegant terrace and stunning view of the Danube, the Gellért’s Panorama Restaurant is an arresting location for a lunch with your family or significant other. Every Sunday, the Panorama serves its lunch guests a rich array of dishes made from premium ingredients in a variety of tastes. Playing a key role is the concept of seasonality, including an emphasis on the use of fresh herbs and spices. Home-made cakes and pastries and warm Hungarian desserts are also a perpetual feature.
Brunch at the Gellért is a treat for the whole family! Offered as an accompaniment to brunch at the Gellért are a variety of professionally led, interactive programs featuring a different range of themed games, quizzes, and prizes each week.
Brunch is served from 12:00 until 3:00 p.m. at a cost of HUF 7,400 + 10% service charge per person and includes unlimited consumption of food and drinks (champagne, wine, beer on tap, soft drinks, and coffee). Children under 12 eat for half price, while toddlers under the age of 3 enjoy the full selection free of charge.
Ticket purchases and table reservations for Gellért’s low-priced Sunday Brunch special may be made comfortably online via the Gellért Webshop.
Sunday Brunch at the Gundel
If your goal is to have Sunday lunch in a truly elegant setting, then Gundel Restaurant, with its centuries-old tradition, posh decor, and delicious signature dishes, is a perfect choice. At Gundel, the menu includes a variety dishes to please both meat lovers and those seeking lighter vegetable fare. Though the Sunday buffet selection at Gundel varies from week to week, certain mainstays, including Hungarian classic and cream soups and traditional Hungarian meat dishes, are a permanent feature.
The buffet is open from 11:30 a.m. until 3:00 p.m. and costs HUF 9,800 (+12.5% service charge). Guests receive a glass of champagne and an orange juice upon arrival, after which they may choose at will from a selection of hot and cold foods of both Hungarian and international origin, finishing their meal with dessert. The cosy atmosphere is rendered even more pleasant by the restaurant’s offering of live piano music.
Here, too, consideration is given to children, who until the age of 4 enjoy lunch free of charge. Children under 12 partake of the buffet’s diverse array of tempting dishes for the discount rate of just HUF 4,900 per child.
Sunday Brunch at the Hilton
Another location worthy of consideration for your weekend meal is the Buda Castle district: specifically, the Hotel Hilton’s newly renovated LÁNG Bistro & Bar. Here, the regular Sunday smorgasbord, bearing the name “All You Can Eat,” invites families to enjoy unlimited consumption from its buffet table between 12:30 and 3:30 p.m. for the price of HUF 10,900 per person. Included are not only unlimited food, but also unlimited drinks from a selection of champagne, beer, wine, soft drinks, mineral water, coffee, and tea. At the Hilton it is not only the unparalleled view of the historic Castle District that makes brunch memorable: the experience is also elevated by an accompaniment of pleasant jazz and swing music.
Children under 4 lunch for free, while those between 4 and 14 enjoy a 50% discount. Here, too, a children’s corner is provided to help keep the younger family members occupied while their elders take advantage of a Sunday lunch rife with all the flavours, aromas, and special culinary fare the Hilton has to offer.