Chrissy Teigen reveals brunch obsession, favorite staycation spots

Chrissy Teigen kicked off Sapphire Sundays on Aug. 20, 2017. 

Michael Williams Photograpy

Anyone who follows Chrissy Teigen on social media knows that the model and cookbook author is crazy about food, but it turns out she also has a "Rain Man"-like knowledge of brunch options across both coasts. It's appropriate, then, that Teigen helped Chase Sapphire Reserve kick off a brunch series, Sapphire Sundays at Rose Cafe in Venice Beach. 

Teigen talked to CBS News about her brunch obsession and how she and her husband John Legend share duties when traveling with their daughter. 

Tell me more about your work with Chase Sapphire Reserve.

This is my second year working with them. I feel like it's the most perfect pairing: Travel and dining are two of the most important things in my life and I get to kick off this amazing brunch series. I'm having a really good time being everyone's tour guides. I will brag about being one of the most knowledgeable people on where to find the best spots and places around the world.

What's your ideal brunch menu?

I could go on forever. It's honestly so hard because I want to ask, "Am I in New York?" because in New York, my ideal brunch menu is at Frank on 2nd Ave between 4th and 5th. They have baked eggs in ragu -- I tried to replicate it this morning, unsuccessfully -- but it's basically meatballs and Italian sausage in tomato sauce with baked eggs inside and then it comes w a little hashbrown on the side. It would be that or at Jack's Wife Freda, they have a duck prosciutto croque madame, which is insane! And just a good old-fashioned Bloody Mary. I'm a Bloody Mary girl for brunch.

It's really impressive how well you remember these dishes. It's like you memorized the menu descriptions. 

Oh my God, and I can do L.A. for you. We have a pasta place that incorporates eggs into all their dishes. L.A. is heaven for brunch. I think in L.A. I lean toward a lunch-ier brunch and in New York, a breakfast-ier meal. In L.A., I love a good seafood salad with a poached egg. I could go on forever. I love brunch. One of the best brunches in L.A., along with Rose Cafe and Jon & Vinny's, is Nobu. They have a secret breakfast/brunch that nobody's really heard of because they don't expect it. They have chicken and waffles and caviar on top of eggs. It's so good. It's a Malibu secret.

You travel a lot, but what's your best staycation?

My staycation -- I think we count a staycation as being in the continental U.S. We really, really love Santa Barbara. Speaking of ultimate brunches, Santa Barbara is great for huevos rancheros. There are so many places I love there on Main Street.

Ojai is fantastic for a real staycation. We drive down to the Montage in Laguna Beach. We've had so many life-changing events there. My sister's baby shower, my sister's wedding, my birthday parties and big John performances have been down there. I went to high school in Huntington Beach so it's nice to be able to go down and reminisce and go to cute places that put together picnic baskets for you. You go to the beach and have a cool picnic. It's close, but it's far enough to feel different.

What would you write in your survival guide to traveling with a baby if you had one?

Well, it changes so often, so you can't ever get comfortable. You can't be like, "Oh my God, my daughter is amazing on planes," because you'll say that and two weeks later you'll have to apologize to everyone within 20 feet of you, so I won't even pretend she's the best traveler. I think she's in the stage where she really explores and she's really hyper. She's not screaming or crying but she wants to move and not sit in your lap.

I can't even eat a meal without her eating three-quarters of it. Things like that will never be the same, so get over it -- you'll never have your own meal again. But a lot of planning goes into it for her sleep schedule and knowing she'll be in a good mood when we get to the airport.

Luckily John and I are good at splitting time and we're good at two different things on the plane. John is so patient and he'll cut up the food and let her eat it and share and I'm more the player. When she wants to play and read and do funny voices, she'll come to me and when she wants calmer vibes, she'll go to John.

We also try to sneak lots of carry-ons in.

Is your daughter Luna a good eater?

Oh, she's such a good eater. Her palate's been -- I feel silly saying that about a baby, but she'll really try anything. It's funny, the only thing she doesn't love is when I made her own baby food or pureed her own spinach or made things that were too "young" for her. I love that. She'll take down a piece of fried pork the same way she'll put peas in her mouth. I can't think of anything she won't eat.

How do you keep a balanced diet when you have to travel so much?

It's actually easier for me to diet when I travel. When John and I are at home, that's when we find ourselves being -- I want to say bad, but it's not bad -- but we cheat a bit more when we're at home because we're cooking a lot and we have our favorite meals we have in the city that we know are going to be amazing via delivery.

When we go on the road or on vacation or have room service, it's so easy to kinda be like, "Oh, the caesar salad is going to be amazing." When we're on tour we're a lot safer with food and when we go to other countries, we'll try anything. We kind of set rules -- I'll even write them down because I'm such a cheater. Like, if we get dessert, we're going to share it. If we're in Italy, we're going to eat as much pasta as we want, but only for lunch and then we'll have protein and veggies for dinner.  

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    Andrea is an entertainment producer at CBSNews.com