Brunch At La Sirena, Avec And Ada St. | West Loop And Bucktown, Chicago

Three new favorites--La Sirena, Avec and Ada St.--for Sunday morning

Time was, we preferred to cook Sunday brunch at home, far from the hungry throngs queuing for by-the-book Benedicts.

That was before three of our perennial favorites launched creative, unusual and savory Sunday brunch menus. Now we can't stay away.

At La Sirena Clandestina, pancakes speak Japanese: They're okonomiyaki ($12), packed with vegetables and garnished with Kewpie mayo instead of maple syrup. The restaurant's Brazilian and Argentinean lilt comes through in steak and eggs ($16) with black beans and serrano salsa, bacon- and cheddar-stuffed breakfast emapandas ($4), and rabanada ($8), Brazilian fried French toast.

Avec's baked eggs | Ada St.'s steak salad (Photos courtesy of the restaurants)

A few blocks east, on Randolph Street, Avec serves its own savory pancake–this one made of semolina and topped with fried chicken wings, honey and harissa ($12). That Avec's baked eggs ($10) are available only once per week is almost tragic. We'd happily dig into the shakshuka-like bowl of roasted peppers, guanciale, feta and herbs daily.

Ada St.'s new brunch is unabashedly savory, with few nods to the sweet set. Start the day with crawfish cakes with popcorn grits and braised hearty greens ($10) or chilaquiles in dark, smoky chipotle sauce ($8). Thai beef salad ($12) is piquant and bright, with rice noodles and a shower of fresh herbs. Added perk: There's a ping pong table on the restaurant's back patio. 

Good morning, indeed.