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Where to Find the Best Brunch in Washington, DC
From scoring the cheapest bottomless mimosas to dining with the sassiest drag queens.
Brunch is decidedly a thing nowadays. But here’s the catch: you have to know what you’re looking for. Do you want lick-the-plate-clean food? Or is it bottomless mimosas first, food second? Maybe you want a (drag queen) performance with a side of eggs. No worries. DC has it covered with these top spots:
If you’re obsessed with food:
So you live for the perfect ricotta pancake or housemade fritatta. If you’re there for food and only food, head to always lively 14th Street for spanish-influenced Estadio, Cork’s delicious small plates, or the housemade pop tarts at the always-packed Ted’s Bulletin. Northwest in Adams Morgan, try Cedric Maupillier's Mintwood Place for French-inspired eats and inventive food that’s sure to impress.
Over in Foggy Bottom, farm-to-table favorite Founding Farmers is a hard-to-get res for a reason, while Marcel's by Robert Wiedmaier offers a prix-fixe menu focusing on fine French and Belgian offerings. For the only Michelin-starred brunch, be sure to visit the Blue Duck Tavern. In nearby Georgetown, Seasons and Sequoia Restaurant each offers a full array of regional and fresh offerings at various food stations – plus the bottomless mimosas to help wash it all down. For an outside the box take on brunch favorites, at Michael Schlow's Alta Strada brunchers can nosh on an everything bagel pizza topped with smoked salmon, mascarpone and all the fixings.
And if you want a presidential dining experience, both LINCOLN and Teddy & The Bully Bar (the two are sister restaurants that pay homage to the 16th and 26th U.S. Presidents) offer Sunday brunch specials, including bottomless brunch and drinks at the former and a prix fixe brunch and Bloody Mary bar at the latter.
If you don’t have all day:
Okay, so maybe you can’t spend three hours leisurely brunching your Sunday away. If you’re in the mood for a savory egg sandwich, swing by market-slash-eatery Glen’s Garden Market (located in Dupont Circle and Shaw) for one made with local favorite Bullfrog Bagels, or head to Union Market for a biscuit-based version from the Mason Dixie stand. Those in the mood for something sweet can pop by one of the city’s gourmet doughnut shops; Astro Doughnuts & Fried Chicken and District Doughnut are standouts.
If you want to leave a little (or a lot) tipsy:
Bottomless mimosa deals are a dime a dozen, but some places really do it right. Richard Sandoval’s restaurants - which include Masa 14 and El Centro - all offer a deal that gets you bottomless mimosas and an endless supply of delicious tapas. Go hungry. At Provision No. 14, you’ll find communal brunching (mascarpone pancakes for everyone!) as well as sharable hand-crafted cocktails, served up in a French press. Agora has a fantastic bottomless brunch, complete with hummus and every other Mediterranean dip one could ask for, accompanied by warm, fluffy pita bread. Craving cider? At Shaw's ANXO Cidery & Pintxos Bar, $20 will get you a never-ending stream of three different ciders. For an upscale take on the bottomless format, go to Latin-infused steakhouse Del Campo for endless glasses of the smoked pineapple mimosa and a carving station with meats galore.
If you want to brunch on a patio:
When the weather’s perfect, brunching al fresco is practically required. A rundown of some of the prettiest patios on which you can catch a breeze with your benedict: Iron Gate, Sequoia, Tabard Inn, Tony and Joe’s Seafood Place, Occidental Grill & Seafood, Open City, Maketto, Fiola Mare and Le Diplomate.
If you want a show with your eggs:
But sometimes it’s not even really about the meal. If you want a unique experience for your Sunday morning, you’re covered. Feeling sassy? Make your way to one of the city’s (yes, there are multiple) drag queen brunches—the most popular are at Perry’s in Adams Morgan or Nellie’s on U Street. Feeling like you didn’t get your fill on Saturday night? DC’s famous La Boum brunch is a three-hour party involving DJs, burlesque, champagne and dancing at the Downtown-located Capitale. Sax Restaurant & Lounge offers an all-male burlesque show on Sundays from SIR, which pairs perfectly with its French-American cuisine. Feeling spiritual? Check out Howard Theatre's gospel brunch, which serves up a homestyle Southern buffet alongside the belting voices of the Harlem Gospel Choir. If you're in the mood for live jazz, head to Acadiana, which also offers delicious Cajun-style cuisine. All of these sell out regularly and quickly, so early reservations are strongly encouraged.
Now brunch is decided, but you still have the rest of the day’s meals to plan. Discover all of the hottest restaurants and best places to eat in Washington, DC.