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801 – DC

 

AESTHETIC VIBE (1)

801 is a super cute restaurant in the newly gentrified Shaw neighborhood. They have three floors with a rooftop that is perfect for summer/spring and all the Instagram pictures you could imagine. The decor is very bright and welcoming with splashes of yellow and lots of flowers sprinkled around. In addition to the great choice of R&B and pop music playing, 801 gives you everything you could want when it comes to vibes.

MENU OPTIONS (1)

Most of the options on 801’s brunch menu are very light and remind me of a stereotypical California brunch. It features a salad, avocado toast, crepes, a sandwich, and a few egg dishes. As somewhat of a picky eater, the only things on the menu that were options for me to order was the breakfast burger and breakfast tacos. I think other picky eaters might have trouble finding a dish on this menu that suits them.

FOOD (1)

As a person who enjoys a good brunch quesadilla or burrito I thought the tacos would be the perfect choice. Unfortunately, the tacos were not a hit. Although they sounded very good (with scrambled eggs, chorizo, salsa, onions, and queso fresco, how could they not be?!), they lacked flavor. I thought adding some sour cream would help make them more enjoyable, the restaurant did not have any, so I had to eat them dry. Additionally, I could not even switch it out for the brunch burger because my friends who ordered said it was a dud as well.

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Service (1)

Although our waitress seem to be a bit anxious, the overall service was good. At times she slacked a little in bringing us new champagne bottles, but I don’t fault her because we had a party of five and were downing our mimosas very quickly.

Overall Rating (1) Two Cheers! 801 has done a great job when it comes to music, drinks and decor, but they are heavily lacking in the food department. The best thing about 801 is that they are a pour your own/build your own mimosas restaurant. They offer a variety of juices and purees like orange, grapefruit, strawberry and peach puree. I had been trying to visit 801 for months but my brunch experience was a bit disappointing. Sometimes I can ignore average food for good mimosas and service, but 801 has not done enough to make me want to visit again.

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P.S. I’ve been to 801’s rooftop for happy hour food and drinks and I thoroughly recommend!

Tavern 29 – NYC

AESTHETIC VIBE (1)

Tavern 29 is a true tavern: cozy with, dim lighting and a lot of word finishing. While the restaurant was long, it was pretty narrow ( but not crowded.)  All of the tables are high tops, (which I have a love/hate relationship with.) Tarven 29 has a Black, Le Cordon Bleu trained executive chef, which is what drew me in. The restaurant’s track list was super nostalgic and included all the songs you loved when you were in middle school (think: Sean Paul, Destiny’s Child, and Fergie.) My favorite thing about Tavern 29 is their rooftop. After brunch we headed up there; it has a beer garden vibe and it’s perfect for when you don’t have after-brunch plans, but don’t want to go straight home after.

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MENU OPTIONS (1)

Tavern 29’s menu options are very American: omelettes, burgers, pizza, and a salmon Benedict if you’re feeling breakfast. If you’re really feeling lunch instead of breakfast wings are on the menu too. The restaurant also gives an option of avocado toast or a Farro bowl for a lighter diet. If you’re anything like me, though avocado toast is delicious, $15 for it is insane. The menu has great options but leaves out brunch favorites like shrimp and grits and chicken and waffles. Bottomless mimosas are priced on the higher side at $25. 

FOOD (1)

I went with the hangover pizza. The pizza was about the size of &pizza’s pizzas (if you know, you know). On the pie was Bechemel (white sauce), cheddar jack cheese, spinach, and bacon topped with two eggs sunny side up. It was absolutely amazing. I would love to wake up to that pizza every time I’m hungover. I’m not usually a fan of white sauce, but I didn’t even notice. My friends both ordered the hangover burger which also received rave reviews.

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Service (1)

The restaurant served mimosas in stemless wine glasses instead of flutes which meant more mimosas and less empty glasses. In addition to larger glasses, our waitress was extremely attentive, filling our glasses up until the last minute. The was a party of ten dining at the same time as us, and our waitress skillfully balanced both parties, never forgetting about our table.

Overall Rating (1)

Three Cheers. Tavern 29 is now on my go-to brunch list. The food is satisfying, the service is great, and vibe was right. My pizza was so delicious and I can’t wait to try everything else on the menu. I’m that friend who never wants to go home, so beer garden rooftop was also perfect. I’d recommend Tavern 29 for lowkey brunches, catching up with old friends, and even dates (but not the first date LOL.)

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Tulips – DC

AESTHETIC VIBE (1)

Tulips is a quaint champagne bar, located in a row house in DuPont Circle. The inside is very floral heavy with fresh tulip arrangements scattered throughout the dining room, hence the name “Tulips”. The decor is a combination of classic and chic with exposed brick and a crystal chandelier to add charming touches.

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MENU OPTIONS (1)

The entree options left a lot to be desired and the choices weren’t too creative and left out some of the necessary brunch staples.  They offered waffles (no chicken), a burger, bagel and lox, and eggs bacon and potatoes. Tulips makes up for their lack of food options by offering bottomless oysters and beignets. The beignets tasted more like cinnamon sugar donut holes. After a donut hole or two, we realized they weren’t worth eating. The bottomless oysters were exactly what we needed while we had our mimosas and ordered our food.

FOOD (1)

The burger was the only option that I was attracted to. It wasn’t a typical brunch burger and was not offered with a fried egg. The burger was very regular; not the best I’ve had but also not the worst.

The bottomless mimosas are served in the best style, pour it yourself. They provide an entire bottle of champagne with a small carafe of your juice of choice. We opted for the bellini, which they made in house, and was a pear puree instead of peach. The puree was very concentrated so you have to be careful when you pour so its not too sweet and syrupy.

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Service (1)

The dining room is pretty small so the one waiter/bartender was able to be attentive to the two tables and the few of us sitting at the bar. All the staff was very friendly and provided us with refills on the oysters and bottles of champagne very promptly.

Overall Rating (1)

Three Cheers! Although Tulips has limited menu, the overall experience is worthwhile. The bottomless oysters, beignets and bloody mary’s, mimosas, and bellinis make up for their more simplistic brunch options . This place is definitely something to try if you’re into oysters and want to deviate from you normal, go-to brunch spots.

The Ivy – LA

AESTHETIC VIBE (1)

The Ivy offers a fabulous brunch in Los Angeles. When you walk in they offer you a  complimentary glass of champagne. The restaurant is decorated in bright colors. Cute floral details are everywhere from their seating to their china.  Every table from their dining room to their outdoor patio has a fresh bouquet of roses.

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MENU OPTIONS (1)

The Ivy offers fun versions of your brunch favorites like a Fresh Tangerine Bellini and their Cajun Bloody Mary.  They have a full cocktail menu where you can order French Rosé Sangria, The Ivy Gimlet, or their Kumquat Tequila Cocktail.

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FOOD (1)

The Ivy has something for everyone with breakfast staples like buttermilk pancakes, brioche french toast, chilaquiles and huevos rancheros. They have amazing fresh seafood options from a crab, shrimp or crab cake benedict, to fresh wild Maine lobster served with eggs and bacon. You can also order from their lunch menu during brunch where they offer fresh salads, pasta, pizza and risotto.  Their dessert menu is intriguing as well if you have room after brunch.

Service (1)

The Ivy is a high quality restaurant and the service definitely matches that. Everyone is friendly and accomodationg.

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Overall Rating (1)

3 Star Rating

Three cheers! The Ivy is a popular brunch spot in Los Angeles and it is certainly worth the hype! I can’t wait to go back to try more things on the menu.

West Third Common – NYC

AESTHETIC VIBE (1)

West Third Common Bar is a restaurant in the heart of Soho. The restaurant’s vibe is comfortable, and cozy. We only had a party of five, but the plush couches, and huge tables in the back make this place perfect for groups. There are board games available to play, to add to the communal aesthetic. Everyone there was in their twenties and ready to drink (safe to say we fit right in).

MENU OPTIONS (1)

The brunch menu is pretty standard. Chicken and waffles, Steak and eggs, eggs Benedict and other typical American, with a “fun” option thrown in- pacos. Pacos are pancake tacos with breakfast fillings; sadly no one got this, so I can not report on if it was good or not. For $35 you get an entree, and unlimited mimosas. No matter what time your brunch reservation is you drink from 10 am to 4 pm. I was finished with my seated brunch at 2 pm but stayed the extra two hours for more drinks. Guests are encouraged to come early if you have a late seating too!

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FOOD (1)

Overall the food was underwhelming. I ordered the chicken and waffles after being told it was the best thing on the menu. The chicken was overcooked, to the point of the skin being almost burnt, and the waffle was just sad. The table also ordered the brunch burger and steak and eggs- both mediocre. This place is heavy on the booze and less focused on the brunch ( it’s so hard finding a happy medium!)

Service (1)

The service here was great. Aside from the bad food recommendations, our waiter was perfect. He explained how brunch worked, and never left our glasses (or pitcher) empty. Once we switched over to the bar, the bartenders were just as attentive. You definitely get your money’s worth of mimosas at West Third Common.

Overall Rating (1)

1 Star Rating

One Cheer! The food was extremely mediocre, but the drinking option was pretty cool. We were able to bridge the awkward time gap between brunch time, and our day party, which was cool. This place made sure which I we had plenty of drinks. I would come here with a large group on a chill day, but wouldn’t recommend for a special occasion like a birthday.

A-Frame – LA

AESTHETIC VIBE (1)

A-Frame is almost like a Hawaiian shack in Culver City. My friends and I were working out at the Culver City stairs and we were looking for a new brunch spot that could accommodate a big party and we stumbled upon A-Frame. Nothing about it is classic, it is very fun and eclectic yet still casual!

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MENU OPTIONS (1)

A-Frame is not your ordinary brunch! They do their own take on Hawaiian fusion which is fun and different. They have all you can drink Mimosas, Bloody Mary’s and Michelada’s.

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FOOD (1)

So many options! A-Frame has all you can eat pancakes. You choose your flavor of buttermilk, banana mac nut, pineapple, orange & guava, or buttermilk pancakes with mochiko fried chicken. They have cracklin beer can chicken, kalua pork ramen, baby back ribs with a chili glaze, pork fried rice, or “scrimp” with polenta. For the less adventurous they have a double cheeseburger, steak and eggs, or a breakfast “sam which” with bacon, avocado, tomato, and lettuce on sweet hawaiian bread. I went for the black kale salad with asian pear, cucumber, edamame, wonton, pepits and a gonzo vinaigrette which was delicious.

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Service (1)

Everyone at A-Frame was super friendly! The restaurant is almost communal. They have long tables so if you have a small party you could end up sharing the table with another party. Our waiter was very good on refilling mimosas! We were the last group left in the restaurant and they let us stay until we were ready to go!

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Overall Rating (1)

3 Star Rating

Three Cheers! A-Frame was a fun brunch and is good for if you have a big group. I would definitely recommend this brunch to anyone in the mood to try something new.

Mission- DC

AESTHETIC VIBE (1)

Mission is a Mexican cantina in the heart of DuPont Circle. Whether you’re there for happy hour, brunch, or dinner, the restaurant is always bustling with 20-something year old young professionals. The decor of the restaurant is very rustic, think wood paneled ceilings, antique futures, and neutral colors. There is a front patio as well as an open upstairs room that can be rented for private brunches.

MENU OPTIONS (1)

Mission’s cantina feel translates into its menu as well. They incorporate breakfast food into your favorite Mexican dishes like burritos, quesadillas, nachos, and even fajitas. If you’re in the mood for lunch the taco platter is the way to go. Mission not only lets you choose your brunch entree, but your brunch beverage too. The options include mimosas, bloody Mary’s, margaritas, and Tecate (beer); if that isn’t enough to get you through the door, your brunch is topped off with a shot of tequila. All brunch drinks are bottomless, so there truly is an option for everyone. The best thing about all of this is it’s only $36.99.

FOOD (1)

As with any traditional Mexican restaurant, you get chips and salsa upon arrival. As a self proclaimed chips and salsa connoisseur, I’d like to note that Missions chips are delicious. (I obnoxiously kept asking for refills.) The mild guacamole was pretty tasty also. I loved that we could pick the spice level of the guac. For my entree, I ordered the taco platter. The tacos have become my go to because there are endless options to mix and match. The pork belly, chicken, and al pastor are my favorites. I have to admit that the rice that came with the rice and beans was pretty hard and stale. My friend, who ordered the breakfast bowl, which has a rice base, had the same problem. She did, however, say the bowl was otherwise good. The steak and eggs got outstanding reviews as well. The portion was large, and the steak was cooked perfectly.

Service (1)
On my first visit to mission the service was less than desirable, however the manger listened to our complaints and rectified the situation. Because the manager quickly resolved our issue, I decided to give it another try. On my second visit to mission the service was top notch. Our waitress brought us pitchers of both mimosas and margaritas so that we could drink as we please. Why choose when you can have both? I’m happy I didn’t write off the restaurant the first time because of service, because Mission is truly a gem. Everyone is entitled to bad days, but sometimes it’s the little things that can change the view of your experience.

Overall Rating (1)

3 Star Rating

Three Cheers! Mission’s bottomless margaritas take the brunch experience to the next level. The fact that the brunch package, with all of its options, is affordable is a reason to stowaway try it out. The addition of bottomless margaritas take the experience to the next level. Overall Mission has good food, good drinks, and good vibes. It’s the perfect spot to pregame for a day party or celebrate a birthday. Try stopping in for happy hour too, it’s just as great at brunch!

Mission serves brunch every Saturday and Sunday starting at 11 am.

*Mission will have Cinco De Mayo specials from 11 am- 3 am. There is no cover, a DJ and bottomless margaritas all day. 

Toca Madera – LA

AESTHETIC VIBE (1)

Toca Madera is a hotspot in West Hollywood specializing in Organic Mexican cuisine. The restaurant is super cute with a huge bar, lounge area, outdoor patio, and photo booth.

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MENU OPTIONS (1)

Brunch cocktails? Yes please! Toca Madera offers a variety of beverages from cold brew with vanilla infused tequila to margaritas to bloody mary’s. I went for the Mexican 69 – patron, pomegranate, la pinta, prosecco and lime.

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FOOD (1)

Toca Madera offers classic brunch dishes with a Mexican twist like Tres Leches French Toast,  a Mexican Omelette, and Carne Asada & Eggs. You can also go for tacos served on house made corn tortillas filled with your choice of  chicken, shrimp, mushroom & sweet corn, mahi-mahi, sea bass, tofu barbacoa or skirt steak. If you’re feeling healthy, they have avocado toast, a coconut parfait, vegan bacon, sausage and ‘soyrizo’. They also offer a ton of sides and appetizers. The guacamole with plantain chips and sweet corn are a must! I’m not usually one for dessert during brunch, but you absolutely have to save room for the Churro Ice Cream Sandwich! Warm cinnamon sugar churro filled with dulce de leche ice cream. So delicious!

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Service (1)

The restaurant is huge and there’s enough staff to accommodate. Everyone is super friendly and helpful!

Overall Rating (1)

2 Star Rating

Two Cheers! I absolutely love Toca Madera! The first time I went was for dinner and I was excited to try their brunch. Their menu is great and food is delicious. The only reason for not giving them three cheers is because they don’t have a bottomless mimosa option 😦

Toca Madera does brunch on Sunday’s from 11:00 am to 4:00 pm

*On Cinco de Mayo, Toca Madera will have menu specials, specialty cocktails, tequila  flights, special performances and musical guests from 12 pm to 2 am

 

Tre – NYC

AESTHETIC VIBE (1)

Tre is a trendy Lower East side Italian spot located on Ludlow Street. The restaurant’s cool vibes fit in perfectly with neighbors Pianos, The DL and Ludlow House. The space is super intimate, with a bar and only a few tables. Once the weather warms up, the back patio will be open to enjoy some sun as you dine.

 

 

MENU OPTIONS (1)

Tre’s brunch menu features italian entrees with a few American dishes sprinkled in between. I’m definitely not used to eating so heavy so early in the day, but was down to try something different. The restaurant’s brunch special is the most attractive thing on the menu: bottomless mimosas plus an entree for $27.95. Finding an all inclusive brunch for less than $35 is pretty much unheard of, especially downtown, so I had to check this place out. The downside to such a great priced brunch, is usually limited options. There was no room for substitution, and because the physical brunch menu was separate from the regular menu, I wasn’t able to get a full scope of Tre’s offerings.

 

 

FOOD (1)

I went with the carbonara and because the table ordered a variety of dishes, I was able to try a few things. With a day party planned after brunch, heavy carbs seemed like a great choice. The pasta was simple but very good. I also got to try the steak and eggs, and Tre burger: very good! I’m still thinking about the fries.

 

 

Service (1)

I would recommend making a reservation here because the space is so small. Though the bartender also served as the host and waiter, he did not skip a beat. Our mimosas were heavy on the champagne, just how I like it, and our glasses were never empty. After our two hours was up, the waiter politely told us there was another party waiting for our table, which is expected on a beautiful Saturday. My only caveat with Tre is there cash-only policy, in the year of Apple pay, Master Pass, and Square, it’s almost a chore to carry cash.

 

Overall Rating (1)

3 Star Rating

Three Cheers! I really enjoyed Tre’s quaint and warm atmosphere . The restaurant’s intimate vibes make it great for a date or catching up with a friend. I would not recommend going here wit a party of more than five. I can’t wait to return when the weather is nice to experience the patio. You will never leave Tre hungry, as their carb-forward and high protein dishes are quite filling. Don’t forget to bring cash or you’ll be washing dishes!

Tre serves brunch every Saturday and Sunday from 12 pm to 4 pm.

Shaw’s Tavern – DC

AESTHETIC VIBE (1)

Shaw’s Tavern is a pretty popular brunch place right around Howard University, and has a pretty mixed crowd. It has a very chill vibe, with great music playing in the background that will have you singing along after a few mimosas. They have pretty rustic decor, with indoor and outdoor seating and an upstairs for private dining as well. It is a place that you can take almost anyone.

MENU OPTIONS (1)

Their brunch menu is Southern inspired, with key items like hushpuppies, fried green tomatoes, shrimp and grits, mac n cheese, and a cornbread chicken and waffle. One great thing about their brunch menu is they have a lot of sandwich options. Most places usually just have one brunch burger, but Shaw’s Tavern also features pulled pork, a breakfast sandwich, a chicken sandwich and another burger. Shaw’s also offers a variety of pizzas, essentially having anything you could possibly want from a brunch menu.

FOOD (1)

I’ve ordered shrimp and grits from Shaw’s Tavern a few times before, and I wasn’t particularly impressed so I decided to venture out this time. I ordered the breakfast pizza, which features tomatoes, bacon, green onions, an egg, and very delicious sauce I can’t name. I replaced the tomatoes with caramelized onions and got my egg over easy. The pizza was not only really good but also very filling. I was very satisfied and even had leftovers.

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Service (1) I am pretty much always pleased with the service at Shaw’s Tavern. I’ve been there for birthdays, farewell brunches,  and random Sundays and they are always accommodating. The mimosas stay replenished, and they are quick to correct any mistakes that may have occurred with your order. Even though we arrived at 1:30pm this time, our waitress ensured we got the most out of our two hours of bottomless and checked on us very often.

Overall Rating (1)

Three Cheers! Shaw’s Tavern is pretty much always hit. The food, service and mimosas rarely ever fail, and it is a staple for any avid brunch goer in D.C. Last minute or plan ahead, Shaw’s Tavern is the place to go (although you may want to plan ahead because they can be crowded).

3 Star Rating