Food  |  News & Politics

A DC Steak Joint Is Delivering Free Brunch to Moms Over 70 Who Are Alone on Mother’s Day

Each meal from Medium Rare comes with a rose, a card, and a scratch-off lottery ticket.

Photograph courtesy Medium Rare.

Since mid-March, Medium Rare steak-frites restaurants have delivered nearly 7,000 free dinners to seniors and first responders across the DC area. For Mother’s Day, it’s bringing free brunch to moms and grandmas over 70 who are celebrating alone.

The complimentary meal includes French toast, scrambled eggs, and fresh fruit plus a rose and a scratch-off lottery ticket. Co-owner Mark Bucher has also arranged for elementary students from Montgomery County public schools to draw personalized cards for each mom.

If there’s a mother living alone you’d like to honor, email her name, address, and phone number to and Medium Rare will get in touch to confirm. Requests are due in by midnight on Friday.

Beyond kids and grandkids making requests, Bucher says he’s heard from a lot of neighbors, caregivers, and building managers: “They’re kind of the unsung heroes, keeping an eye out.”

Bucher personally funded the free-meal effort initially but has since raised more than $38,000 from businesses and individuals to expand it. Restaurants such as Charlie Palmer Steak and Fleming’s Steakhouse in Tysons have donated meat, potatoes, and sides. Strangers (as well as Bucher and his 17-year-old daughter) have volunteered to drive deliveries.

Bucher hopes this is just the beginning. His ultimate goal is to raise $250,000 and to inspire more copycats.

“We don’t want to stop. Once this is all over and done, the problem doesn’t go away,” he says. “I find tremendous fulfillment out of it. So if we have the ability to do more, we’re going to figure out a way to continue helping.”

Anyone who wants to donate to the effort can contribute via GoFundMe.

You can also order regular takeout brunch from Medium Rare’s three locations in Arlington, Bethesda, and Cleveland Park. For every two entrées, the restaurant will include a bottle of sparkling wine and fresh orange juice for DIY mimosas, plus a lotto scratch-off. Floral bouquets are also available as an add-on if you preorder today.

Jessica Sidman
Food Editor

Jessica Sidman covers the people and trends behind D.C.’s food and drink scene. Before joining Washingtonian in July 2016, she was Food Editor and Young & Hungry columnist at Washington City Paper. She is a Colorado native and University of Pennsylvania grad.