Brunch is popular at Icebergs on Sundays. Lenny Opai, bar manager and “creative director of beverage” at the iconic dining room and bar in Bondi in Sydney, thinks it fulfils a primal pleasure.

“We don’t get the luxury of sleeping in most days,” says Opai. “So it’s nice to have a languid start to the day. Plus, let’s face it – after a later night it’s good to wake up and put food in your belly.”

It’s Opai’s job to pair that food with the most appropriate drink. Some diners arrive with an ideal cocktail accompaniment in mind, says Opai.“ We do have some people come in and engineer their drink in some way,” he says. “And people ordering brunch have access to our cocktail list. But they mainly ask for a Bloody Mary or Breakfast Martini.”

Opai says he’d pair a Breakfast Martini with the French toast with bacon and maple syrup, on account of it being a substantial meal as well as the drink’s lemon making a good palate cleanser in-between bits. Icebergs’ in-house original No. 242, currently on the restaurant’s brunch-cocktail menu, is another of Opai’s favourites. It’s a Tanqueray gin-based cocktail that combines Italian bitters, house-made grapefruit cordial, lemon and orange juice, fresh basil and soda.

Opai says it’s the kind of thing that would pair well with Icebergs’ smoked ocean trout, which features beetroot, roe and cultured cream. “The freshness of the basil and bitterness of the Italian bitters contrast with the earthy flavours of the beets,” he says. “The citrus and soda help to cleanse the palate and cut through the cream.”

Whiling away a lazy Sunday brunch on the deck at Icebergs sounds like an ideal pastime. “Once people finish eating they do sometimes come in and sit at the bar,” admits Opai. “And sometimes they stay until night.”

Here’s two of Lenny Opai’s brunch cocktail recipes.

The Breakfast Martini
Makes approximately 1.6 standard drinks.

40ml Tanqueray gin
20ml Cointreau
20ml lemon juice
A bar spoon of breakfast marmalade

Method:
Combine all ingredients in a mixing glass with ice. Shake and double strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Garnish with orange peel.

Iceberg’s No. 242
Makes approximately 1.6 standard drinks.

Ingredients:
30ml Tanqueray gin
30ml Italian bitters
10ml grapefruit cordial
10ml orange juice
10ml lemon juice
4–6 fresh basil leaves

Method:
Put all the ingredients into a cocktail shaker with ice and shake vigorously for 10 to 15 seconds. Double strain into a highball glass over ice and top with soda. Garnish with a half wheel of orange and a basil leaf.