It’s no secret that DC loves brunch time. To be honest, you’d be crazy not to love it. You get to sleep in AND still indulge in all the yummy breakfast food, and the delicious cocktails. It’s also totally acceptable to spend several hours eating and drinking in the middle of the day. If you’re new to the city or to the brunch game and want to start out with something easy, try Matchbox.
Matchbox has a number of locations around the city (and outside of it) but our two favorite places are the Capitol Hill location (8th St SE) and the Chinatown Location (14th St NW). The menus vary slightly by location, but follow the same general theme. Since less people seem to know about the Capitol Hill location, we’re here to highlight it! It’s our favorite location because it’s right around the corner from Shannon’s apartment. Makes for a great Saturday morning, right?
The atmosphere of the restaurant is quite relaxing, but it can get a bit dark, especially near the back. We suggest grabbing a table outside, under their awning. 8th St is a hopping place and you will definitely find 20 new places to hit up for brunch the following week so sitting outside is great for people watching. It opens at 10 on weekends and serves brunch on every federal holiday that falls on a Monday. If you get there around when it opens, you will have no problem finding a table.
Once you have a table, check out the cocktail menu. On it you’ll find a healthy set of options with six bloody mary options and five mimosa options. They have some of our favorite brunch go tos. If you are a mimosa drinker, try the Capitol Hill. It comes with a granny smith apple on it and is incredibly refreshing. If you’re more of a bloody mary kind of bruncher, try the bloody with a strip of bacon in it. You won’t be disappointed.
Matchbox doesn’t have the most extensive brunch menu so if you’re looking for a down home, American style brunch, you’ll be sad. However, the menu is marvelous for vegetarians with more than half of their brunch dishes being free of meat. Plusthey have one of the most delicious breakfast items out there: cinnamon rolls baked in a cast iron pan. It is served with six smallish rolls, so it can easily be split between two or three people. It’s topped with cream cheese frosting and are served fresh out of the oven.
We recommend the Cast Iron Steak & Eggs or the Veggie Frittata as some great options. If you’re looking for something a bit sweeter, they also have a delicious Banana Bread French Toast. The steak and eggs is served with the cutest dollop of home fries that are easily some of our favorites. You can have your eggs cooked however you’d like, but the classic option is scrambled. Toss some salt and pepper on that bad boy and go to town. The frittata has spinach, mushrooms, roasted red peppers, and goat cheese and is drizzled in a basil pesto sauce. Good news is it also comes with home fries. Matchbox is known for their pizzas so knowing that, you would be safe to assume their brunch pizza might also be a hit. We can’t vouch for that having not tried it, so don’t blame us if it’s awful.
We will go back. Mostly because we have some go to dishes that haven’t let us down since. Why fix what isn’t broken right? Unfortunately it is not a bottomless brunch so you do have to pay for each drink you have. If there are only two people and you both have fairly small appetites, split the cinnamon rolls as an appetizer and then share the steak and eggs. It is the perfect amount for us to share (we’ve definitely done this) and it saves you a bit of money in the end.