Which Trend Nazi Invented Brunch?

Categories: Food

N_MadameBegue_s_restaurant_where_Tujagues_stands_1894_lg.jpg
Brunch at Madame Begue's, 1894.

You know, that infernal hybrid of breakfast and lunch that appeals to hipsters and sickos.

I ask that very question in my current column, a hilarious yet insightful romp consisting of 40 things I hate about food.

And thanks to a devoted reader, I now have my trend-Nazi answer.


Don Spiro writes:

Since you asked, the answer is: A woman in New Orleans over a century ago.

From Zelda Magazine, Spring 2012:

"An October 1906 New York Times obituary notes the death of Mme. Bégué, stating 'MME. BEGUE DEAD; New Orleans's Famous Cordon Bleu Ruled Her Kitchen for 43 Years.

"Born in Germany in 1853, Elizabeth Kettenring Dutreuil Bégué owned Bégué's at Decatur at the corner of Madison in the French Quarter. She served one meal, between breakfast and lunch, which became popular across America as 'brunch'."


Well, let me lift a soggy omelette and a wilted mimosa to Madame Begue, who ruined my entire life with her hateful, fussy foodie-ism!

Without brunch, New York would actually be livable!


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14 comments
billyjoe
billyjoe

Brunch..."You know, that infernal hybrid of breakfast and lunch that appeals to hipsters and sickos."

 

Right, Musto: Take a meal that gay men have made into a homo national pastime and project it on to other people. Talk about repressed!

bobby
bobby

I always assumed it was simply a byproduct of a drunken evening beforehand, and that one simply MISSED breakfast and was in need of a greasy meal, but can't wait till 12.

Joaquin77
Joaquin77

Brunch being invented by a fussy 10 year old German girl at the height of the Civil War makes perfect sense if you ask me.

Timmee
Timmee

Well, the quoted obit says she "ruled her kitchen for 43 years," so if she died in 1906, that would imply she opened it in 1863 at the age of 10--and also a little odd considering that was the height of the Civil War.

Timmee
Timmee

She opened her restaurant when she was 10? She really WAS ahead of her time.

jackson30
jackson30 topcommenter

I thought it said she was born in 1853 and the restaurant was in the 1890s. @Timmee 

jackson30
jackson30 topcommenter

 @Timmee Oh, right. Rules the restaurant for 43 rs. Something ain't right.

jackson30
jackson30 topcommenter

Brunch isn't what it used to be.

SavannahMontgomery
SavannahMontgomery

Actually, I thought brunch was invented to bridge the "gap" between your friends who stayed out all night Saturday (the fun ones...who could be reasonably presentable by 1pm and needed a "hair of the dog") and those who went home early (dullards)....there was something for everybody at the buffet.

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