Who doesn’t love mimosas with a water view? Here’s where to get outside for brunch this weekend.
Ada’s on the River and Barca Pier & Wine Bar
2-3 Pioneer Mill Way., Alexandria
These neighboring sister restaurants in Old Town are all about the water. At Ada’s, an airy dining room and patio overlook the river. Brunch is a classic New American affair—think biscuits, Benedicts, and omelets. Pier restaurant Barca sits on the river, serving Spanish wines and tapas in an open-air setting. At brunch, look for specials like crispy potatoes with fried eggs and chorizo.
301 Water St., SE
Not only does this waterfront Italian in Navy Yard have a roomy wraparound patio shaded by umbrellas, they also serve a lovely menu with brunch and lunch items. Traditionalists can go for ricotta pancakes and mimosas, while lunch fans can opt for homemade pastas, salads, and panini.
220 S. Union St., Alexandria
Alexandria’s waterfront restaurant from the former Restaurant Eve team serves weekend brunch in an glassy setting overlooking the Potomac River. Chef Cathal Armstrong’s menu runs the gamut from a simple farm breakfast platter to seafood dishes like fried oyster po’ boys or grilled-fish sandwiches. On DC’s Southwest waterfront (aka the Wharf), check out the patio at his Thai/Filipino/Korean restaurant, Kaliwa.
Hank’s Oyster Bar
701 Wharf St., SW
Celebs like Dave Chappelle like to drop by this New England-style seafood restaurant before shows at the Anthem, but we’d argue weekend brunch is an equally prime time. Snag a seat facing the water, order up a lobster omelet or crab bennie, and feel like you’re on the beach. The bar also mixes group-friendly pitchers of sangria.
The Salt Line
79 Potomac Ave., SE
Sandwiched between Nationals Park and the Anacostia River, the popular New England-inspired spot often draws a crowd (game days and not). Perch on the wraparound patio for creative seafood dishes like crab chilaquiles, Nashville-hot soft-shell crabs, and of course, lobster rolls.
3050 K St., NW
The star of the Georgetown waterfront is definitely a special occasion brunch spot (though it’s still not as spendy as at dinner). Diners can splurge on the $85 “sparkling brunch” that includes a warm pastry basket, choice of appetizer, entree, and dessert, and unlimited prosecco and brunch cocktails.
All-Purpose Capitol Riverfront
79 Potomac Ave., SE
Make it a pizza brunch on the water at chef Mike Friedman’s Navy Yard Italian-American spot, which pours Aperol spritzes as pretty as the views. In addition to pies there are plenty of fun brunch specials like tiramisu cinnamon rolls, smoked-salmon crostini, and a fried Jersey “egg bomb” with Italian sausage.
Vola’s Dockside Grill
101 N. Union St., Alexandria
This Alexandria waterfront restaurant—also a sibling to Ada’s on the River and Barca—specializes in casual, beachy fare like fish tacos, lobster rolls, and crabcake sandwiches and Benedict. A plus for those who like to linger : weekend libations like a spicy bloody Mary and draft prosecco cocktails can be refilled for just $4. Also it’s very dog-friendly, and offers a special menu for pups.
801 Wharf St., SW
In addition to weekday breakfast, chef Kevin Tien’s modern French-Vietnamese restaurant at the Wharf offers a new weekend brunch. Look for creative dishes that speak to Tien’s Vietnamese-American heritage like a “sloppy” Viet banh mi, Saigon cinnamon rolls, and a crispy spiced chicken sandwich. To drink: whimsical cocktails like a pho-inspired bloody Mary.
98 District Sq., SW
Multi-level patios with waterfront views greet diners at this stylish mod-Mex destination at the Wharf. But the restaurant is more than just a pretty place to drink (although mango margaritas are definitely a draw). In addition to the regular menu of mole enchiladas and fish tacos, look for morning specials like huevos rancheros and egg-stuffed burritos.
1130 Maine Ave., SW
Hit Todd Thrasher’s three-story tiki bar at the Wharf for frosty drinks and water views—especially good from the rooftop. The brunch menu has group-friendly options like daiquiri pitchers ($25) and beer buckets ($20) alongside island eats like rum buns and “tiki hash” (tater tots, pulled pork, egg, cheese).
Colada Shop Wharf
10 Pearl St., SW
The all-day Cuban cafe is a bright, casual stop at the Wharf. In addition to longtime favorites like Cuban sandwiches and mojitos, the Wharf location offers heartier plates like “shakshuka-style” poached eggs in sofrito, avocado tostadas, breakfast sandwiches, and specialty coffee drinks.
2100 Second St., SW
This massive indoor/outdoor, 500-seat seafood restaurant—the first to open at the burgeoning Buzzard Point development—is perched at the intersection of the Anacostia and Potomac rivers and flanks a large marina (so yes, water views are widely available). We like to set up by one of the patio fire pits or at the outdoor bar for weekend lunch with an Ivy City Smokehouse smoked-fish board with spreads and bagel chips.