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Brunch Expert Q&A: Brielle of The Gilded Bellini

Hamptins to Hollywood Q&A Brielle


Need a lesson in Brunch 101? Look no further than the school of Brielle Galekovic a.k.a the mastermind behind our favorite brunch blog, The Gilded Bellini. A New York transplant to sunny SoCal like ourselves, Brielle is sharing her knowledge about where to go, what to do, and how to get the most out of the trendiest meal of the day.

What is your go to brunch beverage?
Anything with tequila or champagne, really. I love bellinis, but also a strong and creative tequila cocktail I am always down for. I actually just had a drink a few weeks ago at Toca Madera that was an amazing concoction consisting of champagne, tequila, and pomegranate. It was a total “Brielle” cocktail.

In your opinion, what makes for a good brunch?
I think the ambiance matters the most. Every time I go to brunch, it’s pretty much the highlight of the day. I love going to places that are unique. Rooftops are always fun, but clubby champagne brunches are my ultimate favorite. Any place that has an outdoor terrace is great too. The service of course definitely matters and so does the food. While the ambiance of a restaurant could mask the mediocrity of a dish, it’s not ideal to pay for an expensive meal if it was cold or wasn’t as good as it looked on the menu.

If you didn’t Instagram your meal, did it really happen?
If the photo isn’t pretty enough to Instagram … then no. Not in the social media world at least! If giving the world a glimpse at your awesome meal is your goal, you’ll just have to go back again and hope for a better shot next time!

Top 3 LA brunch favorites spots?
Bagatelle, Toca Madera and Estrella, all in West Hollywood.

Where did your love of brunch originate?
When I used to live in NYC, I brunched every single weekend. Similar to how it is in LA, it’s a lifestyle. Brunch is the one thing you can look forward to with friends after a stressful week of work, or after a long night of partying the night before. What better way to cure a hangover then to sip on a chilled mimosa and just, well, chill?!

Where are you from?
I am originally from central New Jersey, but lived in New York City for about 5 years for college and for work.

Why did you start blogging?
My blog has only been live for about a month! It’s hard to believe that it hasn’t even been that long because so much has happened in such a short amount of time. Blogging, however, has always been a dream of mine. I absolutely love to write and I love to brunch. It’s the perfect combination. This blog keeps me sane, gives me awesome things to look forward to, allows me to meet so many different people from all over, and really has helped me bring my creative ideas to life. Since becoming a blogger, I truly respect each and every person in the blogging world that much more. Everyone is an entrepreneur with an insane amount of creativity, talent, and fresh ideas.

Why do you think brunches are a weekend necessity in larger cities, but not in smaller ones?
That’s a really good question. I feel like the crowd of a big city probably has more of a “going out mind-set”. In big cities, there are always new restaurant or venue openings. Big cities stay current, whereas in smaller towns, things stay the same. People in big cities want that weekend entertainment. They want that special, fun and fabulous meal after working hard during the week. Big cities also are known for being trendy, and brunch is the trendiest meal of them all.

If you could be one type of alcohol, what would you be?
Tequila. Even though a lot of times it has a negative connotation, fun always comes with tequila and you really don’t need that much to be happily buzzed. A.k.a, you save money. Just be smart about how much you’re drinking. It can be mixed with so much too – I love a great tequila and grapefruit cocktail. Also, tequila is the skinny alcohol 😉

Favorite quote?
I have 2:
“If an opportunity doesn’t knock, build a door.” – Milton Berle

“Because in a sense, it’s the coming back, the return which gives meaning to the going forth. We really don’t know where we’ve been until we’ve come back to where we were. Only, where we were may not be as it was because of who we’ve become. Which is, after all, why we left.”

What are the top 3 items you look for/critique when brunching?
Ambiance, if the food is greasy and if they have any type of specialty dish, and if they have creative cocktails – both in the name and in the ingredients itself. I want something that I wouldn’t automatically think to make on my own.

Any particular brunch Do’s and Don’ts?
Do: Dress for the occasion. Look fresh and put together. Do order that amazing $15 cocktail. I think it’s totally ok to splurge on a good drink.
Don’t: Wear last night night’s makeup. Don’t be the obnoxious loud group that makes everyone else in the restaurant annoyed. Don’t pay with a card, especially if you’re in a large group. If everyone is paying with 8 cards, you will receive death stares from your waiter and it makes everything too complicated!

Follow Brielle’s brunchy adventures on The Gilded Bellini.

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