Brunch and Barley

20 Apr

Let’s talk about brunch. I love it. What could be better than rolling out of bed on a Sunday and going out for a leisurely midday meal that almost always involves two of my very favorite things: cocktails and bacon? Nada Mucho. I go out to brunch on a pretty (read: very) regular basis and thus am rather familiar with the District’s brunching scene. Recently however, I found a new favorite: Birch and Barley.

Birch and Barley, still a relatively new spot in Logan Circle, has only been serving brunch for a month or two. And word is out and people are going, when I called early Sunday morning they said they were totally booked but would take walk-ins. So in we walked and in we waited. But who’s going to complain about waiting at the upstairs bar, Churchkey? Not this one. One extra zippy Bloody Mary later we were seated.

The new trend around town in brunching seems to be house-made donuts and Birch and Barley happens to be one of those places where, ‘you have to get the donuts.’ So we got the donuts, three kinds in fact: a bittersweet chocolate glazed number, a very good lemon poppy seed and… a toffee bacon donut, light and airy with a sweet toffee glaze and salty bites of crunchy bacon. To me this was like the breakfast pastry version of ‘you had me at hello.’ So good.

Yep, that's a Bacon Donut.

Next up we decided to share the fig and prosciutto flat bread and the cobb salad. The flat breads are cooked in a wood burning oven giving them a nice smoky char and are served on wooden paddles. This one incorporated a lot of my favorite things plump roasted figs, salty prosciutto and creamy gorgonzola all drizzled with a port reduction sauce. It is definitely something I would order again and was great for sharing. Often a cobb salad is a cobb salad, pretty standard. Theirs was delicious. I’m thinking the secret was in the dressing, creamy salad-hugging goodness. We washed all this down with blood orange mimosas, one of four different types on the menu.

Figgy Flatbread

As much as I love brunch I’ll admit that for a lot of restaurants it is a throw away meal. Often the fanciest of dining establishments will turn out the same fairly standard omelets and benedicts that your neighborhood place will, maybe with a fancier garnish. Birch and Barley gives brunch the respect it deserves; turning out tasty, at times inventive dishes that leave you wanting more.


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