Bitches With Diabetes. That’s what we are—or will be—after a brunch at the new Ted’s Bulletin on 14th Street.
The sugar high starts before you even step inside the place. It begins with you gaping, open jawed, at the delights behind the huge windows. Pastry chefs are mixing enormous bowls of dough, spreading sugary icing on cinnamon rolls, pouring sprinkles on doughnuts and pop tarts. How can you not stare?
And then you walk in and smell it. Like an old fashioned cake shop, the smell is of heavenly pastries and coffee.
Ted’s (annoyingly, but also probably quite wisely) doesn’t take reservations. This means if you go for brunch and you get there any later than, oh, 10 a.m., you’re going to wait close to an hour for a table.
And when this happens, what do you do? You gravitate back to those pastries. And then you order a doughnut.
“Do you want it with cream filling, chocolate icing and sprinkles?” the man at the register, paper hat and all, asks my boyfriend casually. Why yes, yes, we would like all of that. Because it’s 9 a.m. and we have half an hour to wait. And why the hell not, anyway.
The doughnut arrives on a plate and it’s rather large. Scratch that, it is absolutely enormous and covered—and probably made with—tons of sugar. We dig in and enjoy it standing, watching the kitchen work its magic.
By the time our table is ready I feel rather full. Must I continue? I think just one of those doughnuts might do it for me.
Oh, but we merrily continued down our Candy Land path. As soon as we sat down we ordered a cinnamon roll. Not just any cinnamon roll, but a “Cinnamon Roll the Size of Ya Head.”
We spotted them being made while we were nursing our sugary doughnuts, and so we decided we simply must have that, too. Because we are absolutely no better than children in a candy shop.
And then I decided I needed a boozy milkshake. Because how often can you get boozy milkshakes at brunch? Especially one called the Dirty Girl Scout. I mean, really; that is a must-order. The milkshakes (and other specials) are listed on the old-fashioned menu boards on the walls—complete with big white lettering.
So when the cinnamon roll (yes, it was actually was the size of my head) arrived, along with my enormous milkshake (also served with an extra cup for refilling), I had enough sweets in front of me to fuel my energy for a week.
Then the server asked if we would like to order brunch. “Are you crazy?” I thought. Eggs just sound so, so … teeth-chatter … lame right now compared to all the chocolate and icing that is coursing through my veins!
My friend Zo ordered the smaller version of “The Big Mark Breakfast,” which is aptly called “Mark on an Off Day.” Instead of three eggs, two bacon strips, two sausages, hash browns, toast and a pop tart (wheo!), when Mark has a bad day—or perhaps just wants a less-severe version of his heart disease—he apparently downgrades to just two eggs, meat, and hashbrowns or toast.
Zo ordered it with pastrami, which was just fabulous. It should be noted here that the hashbrowns, which come on the side of nearly every brunch dish, are so damn good. They are flattened, which gives them a nice crispy crust. When you break through, you get tasty, soft, hot potatoes underneath. Delish.
My boyfriend decided to at least make an attempt at a healthy brunch entree, and so he ordered an omelet with only vegetables inside. It arrived nice and fluffy, stuffed to the brim with spinach and mushrooms and a bit of Swiss cheese. He loved it, but pronounced the hashbrowns boring in comparison. “Seems kind of anticlimactic,” he pronounced.
I had the Nana’s beer biscuits and gravy, which came with hashbrowns and eggs on the side. It was like two dishes in one. The first, those biscuits and gravy. The gravy itself was chock full of sausage and poured on in all its salty, gratuitous glory. And the biscuits held up nicely underneath the weight. Very well done.
I was so engrossed with my hit of sugar and carbs that I hadn’t even bothered to notice the absolutely adorable décor. I mean, Ted’s is super cute. Very 1940s soda-shop, with all the trims and fittings. They even go to the extent of putting the flat screen TVs into cases that look like vintage televisions—and they project old black and white films on the back wall.
We ordered two pop tarts. But we didn’t even touch them. We took them home (in an adorable container, might I add) and they served as a tasty evening treat. Because Lord knows we didn’t need to eat anything else that day.
The Bitches say: A. Get there early for a table, and try to avoid overdosing on the sugary treats before you dive into the quality brunch menu.
1818 14th St N.W.
Ted’s has locations on 14th Street, Capitol Hill, and shortly in Reston Town Center. Ted’s serves brunch and pastries all week long.