The Big Brunch's Will Guidara Has The Best Tips For Cooking An Amazing Meal - Exclusive

Restaurateur Will Guidara recently appeared as a judge in the first season of "The Big Brunch" — HBO Max's new cooking competition that challenges chefs to create brunch-centric meals and dishes as they vie for $300,000 to jumpstart their business dreams. As you could probably guess, Guidara knows a thing or two about brunch, and he spoke with Mashed in an exclusive interview to give us his thoughts on the show as well as his overall thoughts on brunch.

From the restaurant and business side that Guidara is so familiar with — having launched the Make It Nice hospitality group, which owns famous restaurants such as Eleven Madison Park and NoMad New York — Guidara says brunch plays an important role in the context of mealtimes.

"I've always loved brunch. I know there's this whole narrative that everyone hates brunch. I think in certain restaurants, people don't enjoy working brunch service because, in those restaurants, brunch is such a departure from what the restaurant normally serves," he said. "But ... the food, the service, the design — they're merely ingredients in the recipe of human connection. Brunch has always been one of the most connective meal periods, where people genuinely gel around the table over that meal. I also think it's the most democratic meal period, which, in a way, was symbolic of the way in which we tried to approach the show."

But what about when Guidara cooks brunch at home? He told us what he's cooking and what he recommends you do for your own brunches.

A chef-worthy brunch spread

While Will Guidara admits that brunch is more of an occasion to go out to a restaurant, if he's cooking brunch, there are a few important things to keep in mind — especially when sharing with guests.

"When we do cook brunch, the things that are important to me are that there's something sweet, there's something savory, and there are plenty of different glasses with plenty of different liquids in them. If you're entertaining for a brunch, it's about putting out a spread. You need either your waffles or your pancakes. You need something with eggs. It could be eggs cooked any which way — frittatas, omelets. You need bloody-somethings. You need bloodies with gin or vodka or however you drink your bloody," he said. Overall, he recommends that "more is more." 

But if you're not feeling ambitious or you want an easier brunch spread, you could opt for one of Guidara's favorite shortcuts. He said, "I live up in the country a lot of the time these days, and when people come up to visit and we're going to do some sort of big late breakfast [or] brunch spread, someone will grab a whole spread from Russ & Daughters, and that's the best gift they could ever bring me."

Need more brunch tips and ideas? Level up your brunch game when you watch "The Big Brunch" on HBO Max, where all episodes are currently available for streaming.