I swear I have two jobs. On the weekends, I’m Head Bitch in Charge (HBIC) of your favorite website. By day, I’m HBIC of marketing for the country’s largest independent content agency.
But when my jobs intersect, it completely freaks me out.
Take last Sunday, for example. Cori Sue and I had brunch at Boqueria downtown. The contemporary Spanish restaurant has become my day job’s go-to happy hour and power lunch spot—I’m there at least once a week with a client or coworker.
But walking into my business joint on a Sunday morning was odd. Like waking up next to a co-worker but shamefully realizing the night before was really fun.
Like Cori Sue said, we HBICs pay a lot of attention to other successful females. An opportunity to sit down with someone so successful (and effortlessly stunning, to boot) is always a treat. We pick their brains on all things entrepreneurial.
We all enjoyed the trunk show at Betsy Fisher the night before, where her gorgeous heels and booties were strutted down the runway, and so we were ready for a bottomless brunch—and some serious HBIC conversation.
The last time I had brunch at Boqueria was years ago, right when the restaurant was new and still getting its sea legs. They trekked into the brunch scene offering up a selection of rather odd dishes, sangria, and only one pièce de résistance: Nutella-stuffed churros.
Ever since that brunch, I have repeatedly asked my happy hour and dinner servers for those blessed Nutella churros, but they refuse to put them on the dinner menu. So, we gave them a little time to sort out their brunch, and we decided to head back for another visit.
This time, they clearly have worked out the kinks. There’s a bottomless-booze, endless-tapas, all-the-sweets-you-can-eat menu for $39 a person, both Saturdays and Sundays, as long as your entire table goes for the deal.
First, the cocktails. There’s sangria, of course—tinto, blanco, and rosado. Or there’s mimosas or draft beer. I opted for the sangria while CS and Coye selected mimosas.
Then, the tapas started rolling out. My go-to classic dish at Boqueria? The pimientos de padron, which are blistered shishito peppers covered in sea salt. They serve up the small plate, and the bite-sized peppers are delicious and savory, until—oh no!—you bite into a super hot one.
Only one in ten are spicy. It’s appetizer roulette.
The other classic is their patatas bravas, little potato triangles covered with salsa brava and drizzled with roasted garlic aioli. They’re great when they’re piping hot.
Finally, my third must-order is the pan con tomate. The large triangles of bread are toasted and rubbed with tomato, garlic, and olive oil. You can get them served with Manchego cheese and Jamon Serrano, or just the cheese. Because we had two veggies at the table, we asked for the ham on the side, and I piled it on.
It’s the perfect, authentic Spanish dish, and completes my immediate Boqueria order: pimientos, patatas bravas, pan con tomate. I don’t even look at the menu when I’m there any more.
Then we dove into the rest of the brunch menu. Cori Sue ordered the pancakes, which were buttermilk and covered with peaches.
I wanted an Eggs Benedict, and Boqueria’s tapas version is the huevos Benedictinos, which is a single benedict on a gorgeous plate. The lone English muffin half had a poached egg and Serrano ham, of course. The hollandaise was great, and the egg was just runny enough. Classic.
On the side, I ordered the smoked bacon, which was extremely smoked; it almost tasted overcooked.
Cori Sue and I ordered nearly everything, and then we looked at Coye inquisitively: What, dearest Power Bitch, would you like? She laughed. We had ordered so much, she said she would simply share the feast.
But both Coye and Cori Sue did want to be a bit healthy that morning. So they ordered the salad, which was gorgeous. Organic mixed greens, herbed croutons, and citrus vinaigrette. The dish was very nice looking, but not as impressive in taste.
The seasonal vegetables were broccoli that day, covered with hazelnut romesco and shaves of parmesan. The beet salad—or rather, the Ensalada de Remolacha—came with a bit of frisee, orange slices, pistachios, and blue cheese, and was covered with a sherry vinaigrette. Wherever she goes, Cori Sue typically orders the beet salad, and this one was good, though not her favorite.
Of course, I insisted we order the Nutella churros, which were not on the bottomless sweets menu, but we had to have them. (There is an entire other brunch menu if you just want to order a la carte.) The thick, hot churros were filled with Nutella, fried, and covered with cinnamon sugar. This is heaven, in my books. Absolute heaven.
Boqueria does traditional Spanish plates flawlessly, but there is nothing that really made us stop in our tracks. The service was lovely and timely, and overall it was a solid brunch experience. We were even able to take our left-overs home, which were great the next day for lunch (and endless brunches rarely allow that luxury).
The Bitches say: A solid A. Everything was perfect, friendly, and lovely. Nothing really stood out as jaw-dropping amazing, but we would never pass up such a solid bottomless, endless brunch experience.
1837 M Street N.W.
Boqueria serves brunch Saturdays and Sundays.