Ambar Strawberry Waffle

Your Guide to Brunch on Capitol Hill

Brunch on Capitol Hill is the perfect way to kick off a day in Washington, DC. Get the energy you need for a day exploring The Library of Congress, The US Capitol grounds, or The Botanic Gardens. Or just stroll the beautiful residential streets and pop in East City Bookshop.


Barrel is one of my favorite cozy spots near Capitol Hill. The rustic vibe works well to stay cozy in the winter or cool on a hot summer day. Their boozy brunch includes 4 different Bloody Mary options and 90-minute bottomless mimosas with juice options ($23/person). You can also try their “Happy Meal” which includes a beer, a shot, and a toy. The menu features mostly comfort food like breakfast biscuit sandwiches, chicken and waffles, French toast, and more. Arrive hungry!

Ambar Capitol Hill

Ambar offers bottomless Balkan cuisine for brunch, lunch, and dinner but my favorite time to go is brunch. Bottomless tapas are $34.99 plus $12.99 to add bottomless drinks for 2 hours. Drinks include multiple flavors of mimosas, sangria, and a Bloody Mary. For food, don’t miss the spreads, Salmon Benedict, sweet sourdough, and waffles. This is a great spot for a celebration or a special brunch with friends.

Brunch at Ambar is popular, so grab a reservation a few weeks in advance, especially if your party is larger than 2 people. Check them out at their other DC location in Shaw.

Ambar Strawberry Waffle
Strawberry waffle from Ambar

Ted’s Bulletin

You can’t go wrong with those homemade pop tarts from Ted’s Bulletin. Flavors like strawberry, blueberry cheesecake, and brown sugar cinnamon are always on the menu but look out for their seasonal flavors. Aside from the bakery, Ted’s offers all of the brunch favorites like pancakes, breakfast burritos, sausage and gravy, avocado toast, and more. Make it a boozy breakfast with a variety of brunch cocktails including adult milkshakes. This is the perfect no-fuss breakfast for any crowd.

Belga Cafe

For a higher-end brunch option, head to Belga Cafe for creative egg dishes, beautifully topped waffles, and upscale breakfast sandwiches. Plus, enjoy several brunch cocktails, a variety of juice, and plenty of coffee options. Indoor and patio dining is available.

Eggs with avocado
Huevos Rancheros at Cafe Paraiso

Cafe Paraiso

Cafe Paraiso is a few blocks away from Eastern Market but worth the short walk for its beautiful Mexican dishes. Brunch includes but is not limited to avocado toast, huevos rancharos, tres leches French toast, plus a vareity of breakfast tacos, burritos, and quesadillas. The drink menu features a variety of brunch cocktails and mocktails including a mimoas flight. If it’s a nice day, enjoy the outdoor patio.


This farm-to-table Italian spot is perfect for brunch a little on the fancy side. Lavagna offers dishes like mascarpone pancakes, Eggs Benedict, omelets, chicken and waffles, and more. There’s a variety of brunch cocktails including mimosas, Bloody Marys, Venetian Spritzer, and Jet Fuel (cold brew plus chocolate liqueur). Make the mimosas bottomless for $22/person with an entree purchase (90 minutes).

Call Your Mother Deli

Try one of the beloved bagels from Call Your Mother Deli for a filling meal that works on the go. Enjoy a variety of breakfast options (my favorite is The Sun City) or lunch sandwiches, including turkey, hummus avocado, and tuna. If you’re new around town, the spot can get busy. Try to go before 10 am on the weekends and prepare to get take out instead of dining in.

Egg and bacon bagel from Call Your Mother Deli

Sweet Crimes

Find Sweet Crimes on Pennslyvania Ave near Eastern Market. This gluten-free bakery has a rotating menu of sweet treats generally including cookies, breads, muffins, and more. Look out for vegan, nut-free, and other bakery items for different dietary needs. Their eat-in area is small so plan to grab and go.

Doughnut with colorful sprinkles
Funfetti doughnut from District Doughnuts

District Doughnuts

If you are looking for a sweet treat and coffee to start your morning, District Doughnuts has you covered. The menu changes each season but you’ll always find favorites like brown butter, vanilla bean, and funfetti. In the spring, look out for cherry blossom-inspired doughnuts and fruit flavors like strawberry and blueberry. Fall brings pumpkin and apple flavors while winter brings holiday-themed doughnuts. Go before noon for the best selection.

Getting Here

The easiest way to get to Capitol Hill Eastern Market is to take the metro to the Eastern Market stop (orange, silver, blue). It’s also about a half-hour walk from the US Capitol Building so you can walk over for a day of sightseeing. There is some street parking available but metro and rideshare options are the most reliable.