I recently discovered brunch was relaunching at Fyve at the Ritz-Carlton in Pentagon City. As a resident of the darling neighborhood, I jaunt past the Ritz-Carlton every morning on my way to work but never thought to visit. However during previous baseball seasons, I had fantasized about bumping into David Wright— my favorite player on the New York Mets—while they were staying at the property.
As much as I adore my spacious apartment and the stunning views of the Lincoln Memorial, a decent walkable brunch spot is truly a struggle. Like everything in life, there’s always a tradeoff. Needless to say, I was more than happy to be able to skip across the street to just meet my friends for an opulent brunch
Reeling off our first bocce victory, Jen, Manisha, Kara, and I were excited to celebrate with bubbles and brunch. A stone colored high top table with Bitch-branded menus and a stunning floral arrangement welcomed us. Unfortunately the gorgeous display had to be removed as it obstructed our view.
Stephanie, the restaurant manager, brought in a sword from her personal collection to kick off brunch by sabering the first bottle of bubbly. Stephanie graciously taught us how to saber champagne on our own and let us give it a try.
The mimosa kit is by far the most luxurious I’ve seen to date. We were each given our own bottle of Veuve Clicquot, my personal favorite, served with carafes of freshly squeezed orange juice. Each bottle was just chilled to perfection. Mimosas are available for a steal, appropriately priced at just $5 at Fyve since bottomless is banned in Virginia. If this was any indication how the rest of the meal would go, we were in for a real treat.
The menu comprises a number of small plates highlighting brunch classics and introducing contemporary dishes with the freshest ingredients. Executive Chef Sriram Hariharan and Chef Alex Gut allowed us to sample most of the menu to be able to share our honest thoughts, which we naturally appreciated very much.
The Benedicts came out first, a smoked ham hock for the carnivores and a portobello mushroom Benedict for yours truly. The smoked ham hock was one of Kara’s favorites overall. The smoked ham was tasty and the tomato Hollandaise melted in your mouth. Both Bennys had a perfectly poached egg on top.
Next, we had the fried green tomatoes served atop sumac and feta spread, which we devoured almost immediately. This dish had the perfect mixture of textures: with a crunchy outer layer and a softer juicier texture on the inside.
We appreciated how staggered each course was as the steel cut oatmeal brulée came out next. The combination of flavors from the crispy bruléeed sugar, cold oats, and tangy greek yogurt was extraordinary. Jen especially liked the oatmeal brulée but thought it would be better if served just a tad bit warmer.
The Bloody Mary is one of the most beautiful we’ve ever seen. The bacon-stuffed olive was a lovely accoutrement and the beverage was fresh and perfectly composed.
With Maryland as her home state, Manisha can be quite crabby when it comes to certain items. The crab cake Benedict not only met her standards but far exceeded them. She thoroughly enjoyed the old bay Hollandaise and gave this dish two thumbs up.
Kara was in awe over the adorable bite-sized chicken and waffles. A hickory syrup from from a local Virginia establishment was drizzled over the chicken. Each bite contained a great mix of sweet and smoky flavors thanks to the syrup.
The tofu and mushroom scramble brought me to a familiar place. The tofu was spiced with turmeric and reminiscent of paneer or egg bhurji—two Indian dishes I really enjoy. Every item we had thus far was prepared with fresh ingredients— and the kale and veggies mixed into the scramble was no exception.
We also shared a kale and quinoa salad drizzled in a late harvest sherry vinaigrette. We loved the apple and pine nuts mixed into the salad.
As someone with quite a sweet tooth, Manisha craved the Pain Perdu. The dish, a piping hot brioche French toast topped with fresh berries proved to be the perfect thing to satiate her appetite for sweets from the very first bite.
Kara and I indulged in a mini stack of lemon ricotta pancakes, a staple for us when brunching. Wild blueberry compote and fresh lemon zest made this more memorable compared to other lemon ricotta pancakes we’ve had over the years.
After a couple of mimosas, Huevos Rancheros were calling for me. If you’ve ever had the privilege of brunching with me, you’ve witnessed me scanning the menu for the spiciest item. A crisp tortilla topped with a vibrant egg sunny side up garnished with avocado and micro cilantro, sat above a bed of black beans. The perfect choice before digging into the sweeter items.
As if all of these items weren’t enough, nearly two and half hours and multiple bottles of champagne in, we still had scones and sticky buns to try. Jen had to leave by this point, I hugged her goodbye while eyeing the sticky buns. Unfortunately, I was satiated at this point and couldn’t manage more than two bites of the delicious cinnamon Danish rolls.
Manisha and I were more than glad to tap out at this point. It was up to Kara to try chocolate cranberry scones. The delectable warm pastries were served with raspberry jam were also a hit. Kara felt her waistline expanding as she had her final bite.
The staff took care of us from the moment we arrived from and left no detail up to chance, which is not unusual for a luxury hotel. The staff is approachable and caters to your every need. We were pleasantly surprised to find that nearly every item we sampled was to our liking. Of course we had our favorites among the array of small plates, however all of the items were executed well.
The Bitches Say: A+ for attentive service and spectacular classic and contemporary brunch items prepared with the freshest ingredients.
Fyve Restaurant Lounge
The Ritz-Carlton Pentagon City
1250 S Hayes St.
Arlington, VA 22202
Fyve serves brunch on Saturdays and Sundays from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.