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Best Brunch in Dupont Circle?

nspen1010 Jul 16, 2007 07:44 PM

Who's got the best brunch in Dupont Circle? I'm having a hard time finding a place that serves quiche - imagine that!

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  1. g
    gundy1814 RE: nspen1010 Jul 16, 2007 09:25 PM

    Hi nspen,

    Unfortunately no quiche but the Afterwords Cafe (@ Kramerbooks) has a great brunch (just went a couple weekends ago). http://www.kramers.com/index.cfm

    Included in the price of brunch are some yummy muffins, OJ, coffee and a mimosa! I had the tomato/ avocado eggs benedict and it was great. Food that kept being served around us looked good as well. Basically you get a lot of stuff for less than $20 including tax and tip.

    Good luck finding some quiche!

    3 Replies
    1. re: gundy1814
      somnig RE: gundy1814 Jul 17, 2007 09:40 AM

      I found the food at Kramer's decent but was truly disgusted that every dish, glass and utensil was dirty....remnants of previous diners and smudges of oil, fingerprints, lipstick, etc. everywhere. i was told by the waiter that at least it was "sterilized debris" left on the plates.... yeah, but still???

      instead, i'd recommend Napoleon. it's tiny, hip french inspired bistro up a bit from Dupont Circle in Adam's Morgan. cute decor, a bit Euro-stylish, and pretty good french food... crepes, quiches, salade nicoise, etc. portions are small but tasty!

      1. re: somnig
        arose RE: somnig Jul 28, 2008 08:37 AM

        I ate brunch at Napolean and waspretty dissapointed with the menu. I though it was pretty boring and the omlette I had wasn't that good. I haven't been back since.

      2. re: gundy1814
        Jacey RE: gundy1814 Aug 27, 2007 05:58 PM

        Kramer's brunch is very overpriced for the quality and service. Often they "forget" to put the free muffins or give you drinks that are included in your pricey entree. The chef also has trouble cooking omlettes for some reason. He either burns them or undercooks them.

      3. j
        Jeserf RE: nspen1010 Jul 17, 2007 04:44 AM

        tabbard inn.

        krammerbooks is good for people watching/outdoor seating, but the food is mediocre IMO. for more casual, there's teaism...good scones and iced tea and eggs.

        1 Reply
        1. re: Jeserf
          jpschust RE: Jeserf Jul 17, 2007 06:30 AM

          Mediocrity is really too high of a compliment for anything other than Kramers desserts :)

        2. w
          WashDC33 RE: nspen1010 Jul 17, 2007 04:58 AM

          Not sure if they have quiche but I really like Luna Grill and Diner on Conn. Ave. It is pretty casual but the food is great and there are some good healthier options. The sweet potato fries are a favorite. Here is there Web site: http://www.lunagrillanddiner.com/

          1 Reply
          1. re: WashDC33
            elegantelliot RE: WashDC33 Jul 17, 2007 07:46 AM

            i second Luna, nothing fancy, just good ole brunch food.

          2. e
            Elyssa RE: nspen1010 Jul 17, 2007 05:45 AM

            I like the brunch at Kramerbooks...I go there quite a bit with friends.

            Tabard Inn is touch and go sometimes.

            I've only been once but the brunch at Beacon (its a hotel and restaurant) was good if I remember correctly.

            I know its not in Dupont Circle but I love the brunch deal at Bistro Bis. And they also have a delicious quiche with a good crust, served with mixed greens. (Get it with the smoked salmon appetizer and you'll be quite happy! :) )

            4 Replies
            1. re: Elyssa
              Jeserf RE: Elyssa Jul 17, 2007 06:17 AM

              I like Kramerbooks for the location and outdoor area. Otherwise, I think the food is overpriced.

              My favorite place to grab brunch is open city. I'm sure i'll get ragged on, but it's always good food, the wait staff can be spacey but they don't rush you out of the place on a nice warm day, and you can get whatever you want.

              1. re: Elyssa
                jpschust RE: Elyssa Jul 17, 2007 06:30 AM

                The Beacon is fun if for no other reason than it's an all you can drink brunch, and yes they do have quiche and make to order omlettes.

                1. re: Elyssa
                  nspen1010 RE: Elyssa Jul 17, 2007 07:39 AM

                  Thanks! I think I'll try Bistro Bis for the quiche!

                  I think we're in for a nice culinary trip for our stay in DC -- we've got reservations at Komi, Charlie Palmer's and now, Bistro Bis.

                  1. re: nspen1010
                    Elyssa RE: nspen1010 Jul 17, 2007 07:46 AM

                    Ooooooo can I come along!? Sounds like a great line up. Have fun and make sure to report back.

                2. e
                  Elyssa RE: nspen1010 Jul 17, 2007 07:13 AM

                  Heading closer to Logan Circle is the famous brunch at Logan Tavern. They get pretty busy but its a really good brunch. Again--can't remember if they have quiche---I do recall great bloody mary's though! :)

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: Elyssa
                    Jeserf RE: Elyssa Jul 17, 2007 07:18 AM


                    With that amount of attitude, the bloodies should be strong

                  2. Mari RE: nspen1010 Aug 27, 2007 12:43 PM

                    Any other recs? I'll be in DC next weekend and am looking for brunch/breakfast in the Dupont area on Saturday. I used to live in the area and lamented the lack of brunch places. Are there any new breakfast spots other than these:
                    - Teaism
                    - Kramer's
                    - Luna Grill
                    - Tabard Inn
                    - The Diner in Adams Morgan


                    9 Replies
                    1. re: Mari
                      Elyssa RE: Mari Aug 27, 2007 02:08 PM

                      Hank's Oyster Bar and Jack's both have a brunch. Jack's is especially good for the cheap booze. :)

                      I like Kramerbooks despite a lot of people not liking it. I also like Tabard Inn but I suggest making reservation for there.

                      Luna Grill is pretty good..basic but good. I like their omlets.

                      Other then that nothing too new pops to my head. If you are looking to head up to Adams Morgan (you mentioned The Diner) I would also consider The Reef, Bourbon, and Bardia's New Orleans Cafe (mmmm beignets!). Both have yummy food in a cool environment and the Reef and Bourbon both have outdoor seating.

                      1. re: Elyssa
                        Mari RE: Elyssa Aug 27, 2007 02:39 PM

                        Yes, I will consider Adams Morgan. I'll check out The Reef since I remember that their bar food was pretty good a few years back and the roof would be a fun place to hang out.

                        1. re: Mari
                          Jacey RE: Mari Aug 27, 2007 06:02 PM

                          The Reef's brunch was the worst brunch I've had in all of DC...and I just about go to a different place every Sunday. The service is terrible there on Sundays, very under staff.

                          1. re: Jacey
                            Mari RE: Jacey Aug 27, 2007 06:23 PM

                            thanks - I'll nix that one then. Maybe Kramer's is the best bet.

                            1. re: Mari
                              Jeserf RE: Mari Aug 28, 2007 04:30 AM

                              take the metro to woodley and eat at Open City.
                              they have everything for brunch, service is efficient, you can sit outside, and it's priced decently for what you get.

                            2. re: Jacey
                              Elyssa RE: Jacey Aug 28, 2007 05:25 AM

                              I wouldn't call it the worst brunch in DC. Not by a long shot! A bunch of people like it here. Plus its a cool surronding. You can eat up on the roof or in the "fish room."

                              Also another totally different choice in Adams Morgan is the drag queen brunch at Perry's. I've never been (line was always too long when I lived nearby) but I hear its a lot of fun (how could it not be!?)

                          2. re: Elyssa
                            hilldenizen RE: Elyssa Jul 27, 2008 08:17 PM

                            My sister and I went to Hank's a couple of weeks ago for brunch, and it was fantastic! I had the lobster bisque and the crabcake benedict, and I've been plotting ways to get back for more of the soup ever since.

                          3. re: Mari
                            arose RE: Mari Jul 28, 2008 08:39 AM

                            If you want to venture to U street Cafe Creme has a good brunch and a fun scene. I

                            also like Cashion's Eat Place. A little more upscale (though the prices are the same as all the others and cheaper than Kramers) and quiet. good food. I took my dad there when he visited.

                            1. re: arose
                              mselectra RE: arose Jul 28, 2008 10:32 AM

                              Wow, that's something that Kramers is more expensive than Cashions! I guess you really can't judge quality by price. I've only been to dinner at Cashion's and haven't been to Kramers in ages (to eat), but Cashion's is certainly on a whole other level.

                          4. m
                            moogjuke RE: nspen1010 Aug 29, 2007 03:51 PM

                            I have to give props to Annie's Paramount on 17th Street. Many a wicked night has been cured by a Western Omlette, some clam strips and a Cheeseburger. Their burger is really, really excellent. Made from steak scraps, not commercial ground beef. The Big Bloody Mary ruins nearly every Sunday.

                            1. m
                              masonuc RE: nspen1010 Sep 6, 2007 08:04 AM

                              Duponter here that has brunch every Sunday.

                              1) Lauriol Plaza. Not traditional, but cheap, fabulous, and the only time you can go and not wait forever.

                              2) Tabard Inn. Real good.

                              3) Luna. Very good diner food.

                              Kramerbooks is passable but the food is simply not that good. I like the concept (free/included oj, muffins, etc.) and some of the dishes are innovative but this is lousy food. Often you can't change ingredients because everything is pre-made. And it tastes pre-made. And yes the place is dirty (try to go to the bathroom -- ha).

                              Keep an eye on: Circa (new, trendy, but very limited brunch menu) and Dupont Grille (been around a while and very good but never crowded largely because it is perceived as overpriced).

                              9 Replies
                              1. re: masonuc
                                tastytamarind RE: masonuc Sep 6, 2007 08:55 AM

                                Did brunch at Kramer with three other people about a month ago and it was absolute hell. The waiter was completely over the top -- wouldn't refill water or give us extra napkins unless we "gave him a smile." The kitchen put walnuts on my friend's salad after he had twice reminded the waiter that he was deathly allergic. I asked for no cheese or mayo in my quesadilla (who puts mayo in that anyway?) and got a health dose of both. Muffins were stale, and oj is no more than two or three shots worth. It's just SO overrated; even the location can't redeem this place. I'd go there on a weekday instead and try the tuna avo salad, the squash ravioli, and any of their desserts.

                                Circa is equally lame (see Tom Sietsema's review in this week's Post magazine). Cute decor, really friendly waitstaff, but the food is seriously mediocre.

                                If you want brunch in dupont, stick with Tabard; if you're up for something a little more adventurous, go to asylum in Adams Morgan (on 18th st.) -- it's punk-vegan brunch, with really decent offerings and a funky crowd.

                                1. re: masonuc
                                  Geoff RE: masonuc Sep 7, 2007 05:54 AM

                                  fwiw, Tom S panned Circa last week. Didn't get the impression he had had brunch there.

                                  1. re: Geoff
                                    arose RE: Geoff Jul 28, 2008 08:47 AM

                                    here is what Tom says about brunch in his review of circa

                                    "Brunch, for instance, finds snappy green-apple "mimosas" and satisfying omelets. My request for a vegetarian model delivers a fat and fluffy package filled with diced asparagus, colorful bell peppers, mushrooms, cheese and (oops!) bits ofbacon. Skin-on potatoes -- and fruit that appears to have been cut a day earlier -- complete the picture"

                                  2. re: masonuc
                                    efstewart RE: masonuc Jul 27, 2008 05:22 PM

                                    I am the advertising manager for Kramerbooks & Afterwords. Thanks for the feedback. I just want to clarify that our food is not "pre-made," and that diners can make specific requests which will be honored to the best of our ability.

                                    1. re: efstewart
                                      Jacey RE: efstewart Jul 27, 2008 07:14 PM

                                      I've had nothing but bad experiences at the cafe at Kramer's. The food sounds better than reality. The service is usually pretty lousy and I think the food is overpriced. On too many occasions myself or friends have had food that has come out too cold (or still frozen), over cooked, very dry, wrong prepared, burnt and the list goes on and on. I would avoid this place. There are too many other places in the area that serves brunch.

                                      1. re: Jacey
                                        masonuc RE: Jacey Sep 24, 2008 10:10 AM

                                        I think "The food sounds better than reality" is a perfect description of Kramerbooks lunch. The menu sounds great -- I'm sure they snag a lot of tourists that way. But I live a block away and we have been three times in 7 years, probably never will go again now that there are other Saturday brunch options (like Sette). The best part of the meal is always the muffins and OJ. Everything else sounds good but in reality the food is poor.

                                        1. re: masonuc
                                          Elyssa RE: masonuc Sep 24, 2008 10:40 AM

                                          What is Sette's brunch like? I've only been there for dinner.

                                          1. re: Elyssa
                                            masonuc RE: Elyssa Sep 25, 2008 01:34 PM

                                            It's new. It's good but not great. They have some interesting things like nutella pancakes but the execution needs a lot of work. Still it's a decent attempt from a great restaurant, and they are open early and on Saturday -- which is a huge plus.

                                      2. re: efstewart
                                        hilldenizen RE: efstewart Jul 27, 2008 08:22 PM

                                        I was in the cafe a few weeks ago. It was about 9 a.m. and dead empty. I wanted to sit down at a table and have a cappucino, but one of your servers said I had to order a full breakfast or I couldn't be seated. That wouldn't seem to be very good PR. Pretty unfriendly, to say the least.

                                    2. l
                                      lynnbee RE: nspen1010 Jul 31, 2008 05:53 PM

                                      I'm going to let you in on a little secret. If you like a good hearty brunch without hassle and 'tude, head to Timberlakes on Conn. My favorite is the trout and eggs with homemade english muffin and fruit for like $10. If you start out on Sunday morning with a walk around the farmer's market, you'll be a happy camper. Just make sure to sit in the back room with the skylights.

                                      If you're looking for white linen table cloth place, this ain't it. It's pub grub.

                                      1. m
                                        masonuc RE: nspen1010 Sep 24, 2008 10:12 AM

                                        I continue to hear great things about Darlington House but have not yet been for brunch -- for some odd reason. Sunday brunch is a little harder these days for us as we have a baby and he eats real early. But I hope to finally make it to brunch there soon. Dinners have been excellent.

                                        1 Reply
                                        1. re: masonuc
                                          Martha RE: masonuc Sep 24, 2008 12:04 PM

                                          I read in today's Post Food Section that Tom Sietsema will be reviewing Darlington's in this Sunday's Magazine.

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