Feature

10 Best New Brunches to Try in DC

By Rina Rapuano  |  January 9, 2017
Credit: Deb Rubba

It's tough to beat the luxurious, laid-back feeling you get from spending a late weekend morning in a bustling restaurant with friends, knocking back bottomless mimosas and taking down a basket or two of pastries — and that's just for starters. You can relax, take your time and relish the fact that you have no place else to be. In a world that feels increasingly rushed, brunch is an invitation to stop and smell the bacon. Here are 10 new spots offering the ever-popular midday meal. 

  of  
  • Credit: Lacey Johnson

    Owen’s Ordinary
    Beer loving MoCo residents flock to this Pike & Rose spot for reliable versions of American comfort food served alongside an extensive roster of suds. Dishes range from fondue to an outstanding burger to fried chicken atop a bacon-cheddar waffle. Look out for the “brunch buzz” deal: order two brunch drinks with a main dish, and you’ll also get free chocolate donuts.
    Must-order: Nutella-banana French toast

    11820 Trade St., North Bethesda; 301-245-1226

  • Credit: Aubrie Pick

    Dirty Habit
    Former Poste chef Kyoo Eom stayed on at the newly opened Penn Quarter Kimpton restaurant to cook globally inspired share plates that occasionally pull from family recipes, complementing your fancy hotel fare — like lemon-buttermilk pancakes and grilled asparagus with crab, eggs and hollandaise — with trendy Asian riffs like a katsu sandwich and lettuce wrap platter. Head bartender Sarah Ruiz rotates a new brunch punch every few weeks.
    Must-order: Kimchi fried rice with pork belly and egg

    555 Eighth St. NW; 202-449-7095

  • Credit: Deb Rubba

    Hazel
    Playfully dubbed “dim Sunday,” the Asian-influenced brunch at chef Rob Rubba’s Shaw superstar delivers small plates like mapo eggs, breakfast donburi and koji Texas toast with smoked hamachi. Of course, the chef’s signature zucchini bread with foie gras mousse and chamomile gelée is on the menu too, and should not be missed. Those in large groups (or packing hefty appetites) can opt for the whole shebang — all 11 brunch items for $95.
    Must-order: A housemade English muffin filled with duck sausage, a baked egg and mayo spiked with Fire Panda (Rubba’s famed hot sauce)

    808 V St. NW; 202-847-4980

  • Credit: Beth Kennedy

    Sfoglina
    This pleaser from the team behind FiolaFiola Mare and Casa Luca mainly focuses on pasta, but offers a roster of brunch specials till 2:30 PM on weekends in addition to its regular all-day menu. Two other exciting features are the Bellini bar option — a bottle of Prosecco served with peach purée, spiced raspberry syrup or pear-maple syrup for $50 — and the grab-and-go pastries like cinnamon buns and Nutella croissants.
    Must-order: Rigatoni amatriciana

    4445 Connecticut Ave. NW; 202-450-1312

  • Credit: Peter Eskra

    The Bird
    Poultry reigns supreme at this Shaw newcomer, where brunchers can gather from 10 AM–3 PM weekends and holidays for duck confit with eggs, beans and lamb, fried chicken Benedict or grilled chicken tacos, among other bird-centric dishes. Large groups can book the Autumn Room, which holds up to 20, and deal-seekers should stick around at the bar for the 3 PM happy hour, when free bites are served with a drink.
    Must-order: Tennessee-style hot chicken and waffles

    1337 11th St. NW; 202-518-3609

  • Credit: Lacey Johnson

    The Passenger
    When one of DC’s most popular bars relaunched last year in a new space, locals rejoiced not only in once again finding awesome cocktails — but also in the bar’s popular hangover brunch. Running Sundays from 2–11 PM (when the kitchen closes), it dishes up combos like the fried chicken and sopressata Benedict, plus random deals like bottomless Schlitz for $8.
    Must-order: The burger

    1539 Seventh St. NW; 202-853-3588

  • Credit: Kyle Schmitz

    Ari’s Diner
    OK, so Ari’s in Ivy City technically doesn’t serve brunch — but diner food is inherently brunchy, right? Along with your sweet morning staples, there's a breakfast sandwich served with wonderfully crispy diced potatoes. Street parking can be tough around here, but the public garage around the corner on Okie Street is free for two hours.
    Must-order: The pancakes

    2003 Fenwick St. NE; 202-290-1827

  • Credit: Marcus

    Marcus
    When the new MGM resort opened in December, the property was so overrun that it seemed prudent to wait till things died down. Sleepy January might be just the time to head to National Harbor and check out Marcus Samuelsson’s eponymous dining room, where you’ll find dishes that celebrate the cross section of his Ethiopian heritage, his Swedish upbringing and his famed comfort-food den, Red Rooster in Harlem. Brunch is served Sundays from 11 AM–3 PM.
    Must-order: Sammy’s chicken and waffles

    101 Harborview Ave., Oxon Hill; 844-646-7778

  • Credit: Ken Fletcher

    Farmers & Distillers
    Considering that the brunches at Founding Farmers and Farmers Fishers Bakers remain wildly busy, we’re guessing it won’t be long before a weekend meal at its newest sibling will be similarly sought after. The brunch buffet costs $29.99 per person ($14.99 for ages 7–12 and free for children 6 and younger) and includes coffee, tea and passed items like fried shrimp and pizzas, plus a spread of dishes like grits, pancakes, fried chicken, breakfast fried rice and pork riblets (pictured).
    Must-order: One of everything, of course

    600 Massachusetts Ave. NW; 202-464-3001

  • Credit: District Distilling Co.

    District Distilling Co.
    Turn up here on weekends from 11 AM–3 PM and get treated to a Southern-inspired brunch that incorporates house-distilled and house-blended spirits, like the whiskey-rubbed smoked salmon on toast. If you’re in the mood to try the breakfast sandwich, order it “animal style,” an off-menu signal that you want the eggs over easy instead of scrambled.
    Must-order: French toast with bacon

    1414 U St. NW; 202-629-3787