Spring Food Forecast: Brunch, Brunch, Brunch

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All-Purpose Brunch – All-Purpose Pizzeria has a brand new Sunday brunch! Dishes include The Continental (house made salami, seasonal fruit, cheese, pizza toast); eggs fra diavolo (a twist on eggs in purgatory with calabrian chiles, soft polenta, feta and basil); crispy fried potatoes with a rich gorgonzola crema; the Tigelle egg & cheese sandwich (fried mortadella, egg, provolone and arugula); and a Nutella bomboloni (an Italian-style filled donut topped with an airy whipped ricotta and sprinkled with powdered sugar). Breakfast pizzas will also join All-Purpose classics on the menu, including The Balthazar (a pizza-style croque madame with gruyere, mozzarella and bechamel topped with a baked egg, prosciutto crudo and chives). (1250 9 Street NW; 202.849.6174; allpurposedc.com)

New Brunch Alert — Alta Strada Mosaic, Chef Michael Schlow’s latest outpost in Fairfax, Virginia, now offers brunch. Featuring additions unique to the Virginia location, the menu will include a new Amatriciana burger (pancetta, onions, fontina, tomato mayo and the option to add an egg), Nutella French toast (bananas and toasted hazelnuts) and a cucatini carbonara, among other delicious options. Cocktails include mimosas, Bellinis, Bloody Marys and a Reviver Spritz for $9. (2911 District Avenue #150, Fairfax, VA; 703.280.0000; mosaicdistrict.com/dine/alta-strada)

April In Paris — For the entire month of April, Bastille presents April in Paris, a menu that celebrates the diverse peoples and cultures of France. A large selection of a la carte dishes are available, as well as Bastille’s signature three-course or four-course bistrot menu ($39 and $49, respectively). The menu includes everything from mafe ginaar; bacalhau a Portuguesa; falafel with harissa aioli; ssso buco de lotte; magret de canard à l’orange; paella and more, each inspired by the melting pot of cultures that make up the country of France. (606 N Fayette Street, Alexandria, VA; 703.519.3776; bastillerestaurant.com)

Bangkok Street Brunch – Every Saturday and Sunday at both Beau Thai locations, try the beloved restaurant’s take on a sweet and savory brunch. Standouts include Kanom Krok (rice flour and coconut cream disks garnished with strong onions), and the Hangover Special (two fried eggs, links of sweet Thai sausage and a taro hash). Brunch beverages include house made Bloody Marys, mimosas, champagne cocktails, and more. (1550 7 Street NW; 202.536.5636; beauthaidc.com)

Bird Like Never Before – This weekend, The Bird opens its terrace and sidewalk patios and offers up a brand new menu. Try creations like emu tartare, grilled peri-peri chicken and a bird skewer with ostrich, emu, chicken and cheese sausage, duck, grits, spinach and ramp butter. (1337 11 Street NW; 202.518.3609; thebirddc.com)

BLT Steak Embraces Plants – Recognizing DC’s new love of plant-based diets, BLT Steak’s first Vegetarian Blackboard menu will include several delicious and hearty options for the remainder of the winter season. Try seared and braised cabbage steak, creamy Kabocha squash risotto, and spaghetti squash with sage and brown butter as part of the restaurant’s rotating, seasonal vegetarian menu. (202.689.8989; bltrestaurants.com)

Three-Course Tasting Menu – Alexandria’s Captain Gregory’s has introduced a nightly three-course tasting menu of chef-selected small plates paired with hand-crafted cocktails. A sample menu might include Hamachi crudo (lemon puree, candied kumquats, eureka lemon-shoyu vinaigrette,  purple shiso) and singani (pink guava puree, avocado espuma); braised pork belly and 100 proof rye, scotch, 10-year-old white port; and petite white chocolate cheesecake with plantation white rum (young coconut water, Thai basil, candied beet juice). (804 N Henry Street, Alexandria, VA; captaingregorys.com)

Brand New Weeknight Specials – El Camino in Bloomingdale already offers twice-daily happy hours on weeknights and late night tacos and burritos every day, but now they’re serving up more specials: try margarita Mondays, tacos and tequila Tuesdays, family night Wednesdays (kids eat free!) and all-you-can-eat tacos on Thursdays. (108 Rhode Island Avenue NW; elcaminodc.com)

Lunch Gets Boozy — Iron Gate has an all-new midday menu of snacks and boozy slushies, available every day from 2:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. on the patio and carriageway only. The restaurant will offer four rotating snack plates and a “pikilia” platter–a traditional snack sampler served at ouzeries (taverns) in Greece–alongside a beverage menu of ouzo and house limoncello slushies, plus beer and wine. The menu includes crispy sesame feta, honey, vin cotto ($3), ham & cheese bomboloni, pomodoro ($4), oak roasted olives, citrus, chilies ($5), shell bean hummus, harissa, pickles, crackers ($7), pikilia platter, fried lamb meatballs, sliced house mortadella, almond crusted graviera, sliced pecorino, parsley salad, olives, pickles and bread ($18). (1734 N Street NW; 202.524.5202; irongaterestaurantdc.com)

Loyalty Rewards — Download The TAVERN at Ivy City Smokehouse app from the App Store to take advantage of specials and deals at Ivy City Smokehouse, as well as discounted ticket prices for various events, plus catering and food delivery. Right now, click on the “loyalty” tab to scan a QR code and receive a free chicken wing appetizer after three visits. (1356 Okie Street NE; 202.529.3300; ivycitysmokehouse.com)

matchboxfoodgroup Raises Funds For No Kid Hungry — Through March 8, 2018—a full year—matchbox American Kitchen + Spirit and Ted’s BULLETIN will donate 10 cents from every matchbox pizza and 10 cents of every Ted’s BULLETIN Ted’s Tart sold (up to $75,000) at all locations to help the fight against childhood hunger. Funds raised by matchboxfoodgroup will support No Kid Hungry’s work to connect vulnerable children to effective nutrition programs like School Breakfast and Summer Meals, creating public-private partnerships that work together to identify and break down barriers, allowing children access to meals, and teaching low-income families how to stretch their food budgets and cook healthy, affordable meals. (matchboxfoodgroup.com // nokidhungry.org)

Hank’s Donates To ACLU, Planned Parenthood, NAACP & HRC – Through the end of April, JL Restaurant Group pledges to donate at least $20,000 or 1 percent of all sales from all properties to American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), Planned Parenthood, National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) and the Human Rights Campaign (HRC). “As a proud citizen of this country and this district, I have been inspired by the communities that have recently stood up for religious rights, women’s rights, LGBT rights–human rights. As a community restaurant group, I want each and every one of our guests to know that we are doing our part to stand up for these human rights,” says chef/owner Jamie Leeds. JL Restaurant Group venues include Hank’s Oyster Bar locations in Dupont Circle (1624 Q Street NW), Capitol Hill (633 Pennsylvania Avenue SE) and Old Town Alexandria (1026 King Street, Alexandria, VA), as well as Hank’s Pasta Bar (600 Montgomery Street, Alexandria, VA) and Hank’s Cocktail Bar (819 Upshur Street, NW). (hanksoysterbar.com)

Joselito Brunch — Chef Sierra has taken some of Joselito’s most popular dishes and incorporated a brunch element. Spanish delights include salmorejo con bacalao y polvo de aceite (smoked salt cured cod, thick gazpacho, EVOO dust); revuelto de setas (scrambled eggs with wild mushrooms served with green salad); huevos fritos con jamón Iberico y papas fritas (organic fried eggs with Iberico ham and fries); huevos con carne de cangrejo (jumbo lumb grab Benedict served with green salad); and arroz caldoso de mariscos (Spain’s fisherman rice). (660 Pennsylvania Avenue SE; 202.930.6955; joselitodc.com)

Make It Colorful — The Mediterranean leafy green rainbow chard can be found throughout the menu this spring at Kapnos. Executive chef/partner George Pagonis highlights the ingredient’s earthy, bitter flavor in dishes like the Whole Bronzino with heirloom tomato, rainbow chard, artichoke, and garbanzo ($42) and Gigandes with rainbow chard, kale, and slow roasted tomato ($12). (2201 14th St. NW; 202.234.5000; kapnosdc.com)

The Oval Room Presents… — Priced at $55 per person or $75 with three wine pairings, executive chef John Melfi at The Oval Room offers up an innovative, seasonal, three-course menu. The weekly rotating menu includes appetizers like burrata with shaved globe artichokes, fresh picked herbs, meyer lemon and brioche tuille, paired with Albariño, Nessa 2015, Rias Baixas, Spain, and crispy lamb belly confit with charred eggplant purée, local spinach and black olive tapenade, paired with Pol Roger Brut “Extra Cuvée De Reserve” NV Champagne, France. Entrees include espelette crusted yellowfin tuna with piquillo pepper romesco, charred fennel, orange and chorizo vinaigrette, paired with Pinot Noir, Klee 2014, Willamette Valley, Oregon, and pan roasted venison with avocado purée, spring onions, crispy salsify and huckleberry jam, paired with Zinfandel, Scott Harvey 2013, Amador County, California. For a sweet finish, try mango panna cotta with toasted coconut, raspberry emulsion and guava-lime sorbet, paired with Tokai, Late Harvest Furmint, Oremus Tokaji, Hungary 2013. (800 Connecticut Avenue NW; 202.463.8700; ovalroom.com)

Elevated Brunch – Proof has launched a Sunday brunch service, and it doesn’t disappoint—choose from dishes like brioche cinnamon rolls studded with bacon and caramel; biscuits and gravy; Boquerones toast topped with confit leeks and 40-minute eggs; beet-pickled deviled eggs; and more. Brunch cocktails range from a traditional Pimm’s Cup to Resurrection Shake (El Dorado dark rum, 2 Birds 1 Stone’s spicy ginger beer and coconut-angostura sorbet, burnt cinnamon, star anise and freshly grated nutmeg). (775 G Street NW; 202.737.7663; proofdc.com)

Inside The Mind Of A (Cheese)Monger — Cheese and beer have been produced side by side for centuries, and when paired together, they can truly make each other sing! In a perfect pairings class on April 20, spend an evening with Righteous Cheese tasting seasonal, artisanal chees and craft beer pairings. Journey through the fundamentals of pairing cheese & beer–and the funky stories behind our favorites–so you can go confidently on your own pairing adventure. Tickets are $49. (1309 5 Street NE; 202.716.3320; click here)

Grilled Cheese Is Back In Town — Back by popular demand, Ripple is reintroducing grilled cheeses–and not just for happy hour. They’re available all night, every night, in Ripple’s Bar Room, with two selections to start: a truffled cheese “presse” served with sottocenere and garlic aioli and a morbier grilled cheese stuffed with short rib and horseradish cream. In addition to the two sandwiches, the restaurant has added a handful of smaller plates and snacks and updated the range of cheeses and charcuterie. A more limited menu of seasonal choices provide affordable, casual alternatives, complete with easy access to Ripple’s award-winning wine list and cocktails. Two personal new favorites from lead bartender Jochem Zijp are the farmersonly.com (Tyler City gin, beet shrub, yuzu, egg whites, and carrot top powder) and the bitter nona (cocchi Barolo chinato, cynar, Campari, and lemon). (3417 Connecticut Avenue NW; 202.244.7995; rippledc.com)

Seasonal Morning & All-Day Menus — The Royal has introduced new morning and all-day menus for the winter season. Find comforting new soups and hearty vegetarian dishes, Colombian-inspired snacks, wood-grilled proteins and nourishing breakfast fare during the cold weather months. Start your day with a brioche egg sandwich or lox tartine—then warm up at lunch with rotating house soups including porter beer & cheese and mushroom & black garlic and lobster bisque; vegetarian dishes including charred vegetable chorreadas, veggies with creamy tomato sauce and cotija cheese; and meat dishes like fried pork belly or fried chicken sandwich. (501 Florida Avenue NW; 202.332.7777; theroyaldc.com)

Bento Box Brunch — Newly-opened Latin-Asian restaurant Sakerum has debuted a Bento Box Brunch service, available Saturday and Sunday, 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Priced at $29 per person, the innovative brunch includes six Japanese-style bento boxes showcasing the best of Latin and Asian ingredients and creative brunch cocktails. Choose from Churrasco (grilled beef short rib, sushi rice, chimichurri salsa and fried egg); the Chicken Karaage (double fried chicken thigh, Yukon Gold mashed potatoes, sautéed onion and fried egg); the Yaki-Sake (grilled salmon, mojo sauce, poached egg and basmati rice); the Arroz Chaufa (shrimp & chicken fried rice); the pancake & omelet (choice of meat or veggie omelet and pancakes); and the Sushi Box (chef selection of seven-piece nigiri & sashimi). Each bento box is accompanied with mixed green seaweed salad, bacon-jalapeño home fries, fried plantains and tamago futomaki, with the exception of the Sushi Box, which comes with tamago futomaki, California roll and edamame. Standout pairings include the spicy Asian Bloody Mary (house-made bloody batch, soy sauce, sriracha and shichimi); lychee mimosa (lychee, yuzu sake, rum and Cava); Greek frappe (Smith & Cross rum, cinnamon, instant coffee and cream); Grey Hound (vodka, grapefruit, Asian pear and citrus kiss); pineapple avocado smoothie (mezcal, avocado, pineapple and cream); and the signature SakeRum daiquiri (sake, rum, lemon and herbal simple syrup). Cocktails range in price from $12 to $15. (2204 14 Street NW; 202.518.2222; sakerum.com)

Sustainable Eats When You Want ‘Em — Thanks to a new freezer system, Spring House Farm in Loudoun County now offers à la carte ordering and delivery. Order sustainably-raised meats, eggs and honey through the farm’s website and pick up at multiple locations in VA and DC. Prices include a pound of bacon for $10, whole chicken for $6 per pound, beef brisket for $8.25 per pound, and one dozen eggs for $4.50. (37864 Long Lane, Lovettsville, VA; 703.728.6623; springhouse.farm)

Cookie Cupcake – Through May 31, Sprinkles serves a new cookie cupcake inspired by The Sprinkles Baking Book. The chocolate chip studded yellow cake is lined with cookie crust and topped with brown sugar frosting and dusted with crunchy cookie pieces. (sprinkles.com/order)

Better Than Meat – Through April 13, all 65 Yard House Restaurants offer up a shockingly comprehensive array of meat-free dishes featuring meat substitute Gardein. Meat-free yet delicious items include buffalo, firecracker and jerk bones wings; fried chicken strips; BBQ chicken salad or pizza; chicken and avocado sandwich; and more. (6791 Springfield Mall, Springfield, VA; yardhouse.com)

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