($89 per person; $45 children's menu)
Treat Mom to a meal inside the St. Regis Hotel with a French-inspired lineup that includes dishes such as lobster salad with coral emulsion, seared tenderloin with bordelaise sauce, and a classic Vacherin.
Three-course menu ($39 per person; $9 kids' breakfast plate)
Looking for a festive, polished brunch experience without a $60-plus per person price tag? Ardeo is typically a good bet. The option of $10 unlimited Champagne or mimosas ensures multiple toasts to Mom (not to mention easing family tension).
Buffet menu ($60 per person; $29 for children)
If Mama likes a Southern feast (or Oprah--chef-owner Art Smith is her former personal chef), then the buffet at Art and Soul is a good place to be; think fried chicken and waffles, shrimp and grits, and prime rib.
Chefs Kyle Bailey and Tiffany MacIsaac are serving brunch as usual. That is, if your usual brunch consists of fresh doughnuts, house-brined corned beef hash with fried duck eggs, and a cherry-bourbon "brunch punch."
Between chef-restaurateur Jeff Black's five area restaurants, there's a bounty of Mother's Day options. Whether your mom loves seafood (BlackSalt), casual comfort fare (Addie's), killer French toast (Black Market Bistro), a buzzy Bethesda scene (Black's) or Gulf Coast-inspired eats with a hip 14th Street vibe (Pearl Dive Oyster Palace), the Blacks have you covered.
Three-course menu ($90 per person; $42.50 for children 6 to 12; free for children under 6)
Can't decide between a buffet brunch and à la carte? Chef Sebastien Archambault's dining room inside the Park Hyatt is a good compromise, with appetizer and dessert courses that allow you to pick from a generous spread, and entrées like prime rib or scrambled eggs with rock shrimp delivered to the table.
Buffet menu ($35 per person)
If your mom is a fan of Indian buffets, treat her to this upscale version in a white-tablecloth dining room near the White House. The special menu includes an appetizer of six different chaats, or savory snacks, plus the buffet. An extra $10 gets you unlimited Champagne.
Buffet menu ($85 per person; $37 for children under 12)
Holidays are likely the only time you can ask the chefs at Citronelle for seconds, so make it count. Chef Michel Richard puts on a spread of salads, entrées, sides, and desserts with dishes like poached shrimp, crab "coleslaw," halibut with lobster-saffron sauce, rack of lamb, and raspberry cupcakes, just to name a few.
À-la-carte brunch menu
This popular Spanish spot is offering its regular brunch, meaning you can skip the hoopla of a prix-fixe affair. But that doesn't mean the meal isn't special: Chef Haidar Karoum's menu is reliably tasty, and given that brunch is generally calmer than dinner service (i.e., no hour-plus waits), your mom may actually get to enjoy it.
Four-course menu ($35 per person)
Top Chef fans can have fun catching glimpses of chef Mike Isabella in--and frequently out of--the kitchen, while you chow down on Nutella cinnamon knots, breakfast pizza with bacon, broccolini, and cheddar, and sweet pea tortellini.
Hank's Oyster Bar (Dupont, Alexandria)
Another nice option for those looking to relax over brunch as normal, with one exception: The Dupont location of this New England-style seafood eatery is taking reservations for parties of all sizes (versus the six-plus limit). Alexandrians, you'll still have to fend for yourselves.
Three-course menu (under "Events"; $50 per person)
Another elegant option in the White House environs from restaurateur Ashok Bajaj, you'll find dishes such as truffle pasta, steamed salmon with prosciutto and mint, and a chocolate-peanut cake from chef Tony Conte.
Three-course menu ($45 per person)
Both Rasika locations are offering prix-fixe menus from chef Vikram Sunderam, albeit with different menu options to pick from at both. Menus are still being finalized, but if the Rasikas are as popular on Mother's Day as they are on the other 364, you'll want to go ahead and book soon.
Buffet menu ($100 per person)
For the mom who likes everything--or is picky and needs options--it's hard to beat the spread at Seasons in the Four Seasons Hotel, with everything from a raw bar section to Peking duck. The restaurant is nearly fully booked, so call soon for reservations.
Three-course menu (under "Events"; $50 per person)
If you think Mom would fancy a walk around the White House and a brunch with live jazz or al fresco seating, this is a good option. Chef Ed Witt's menu contains many riffs on classics, like a crabcake with Old Bay chips, French toast with lavender whipped cream, and a lobster BLT.
This classic Georgetown spot only serves brunch twice a year--Easter and Mother's Day--so this is the last time to nab an afternoon table this year. Chef Anthony Lombardo is planning a seasonal menu with items like rhubarb waffles, house-made ham with fried eggs, halibut with lobster farro, and duck confit hash with poached eggs.
Wolfgang Puck's eatery inside the Newseum isn't typically open on Sundays, but it's making an exception for all the moms whose idea of a perfect day is touring the Smithsonian and then relaxing over a family-style Asian lunch with a gratis glass of Champagne.
Three-course menu ($60 per person; $20 children's menu)
Chef Bertrand Chemel may be opting for a more casual take at the revamped 2941, but Mother's Day is still a special occasion in the airy dining room. The set menu will feature dishes such as warm crab salad with leek vinaigrette and roasted veal loin with peas and morels.