One of the best thing about being a Bitch is all the fun people I have the opportunity to connect with over brunch. I was flattered when Liz, the little lady editrix behind What Do I Wear, reached out to me for an interview request. “Sure,” I said, but “let’s do it over brunch.” I selected a newish spot, Republic, in Takoma Park, as my brunch of choice.
It was a beautiful, hot summer day when I met Liz and her photographer friend, Angie, for brunch on the back patio of the Takoma Park locale. First up, Takoma Park is an awesome neighborhood, with a cute little downtown area with restaurants, barber shops, and boutiques.
Republic is owned by Black Restaurant Group, who are the folks behind Pearl Dive Oyster Palace, Black Jack, and Black Market Bistro. The inside of the restaurant is chic, dark and edgy, with a red-and-black color palette, black leather club stools at a dark, edgy bar, and red booths. The restaurant has a vampy, vintage feel—not unlike a 1920s speakeasy. It would be a perfect place for cocktails—and the bar program is impressive.
Meanwhile, the restaurant’s back patio has an entirely different vibe—with red, earthy tones, picnic tables, umbrellas, and rusty industrial light fixtures. There are wooden trellises with greenery on the walls. It’s a very laid back space, where you can waste the afternoon drinking mimosas and eating oysters. My kind of spot. I just loved the juxtaposition of the two environments—and Republic is my kind of spot.
We enjoyed a lovely, leisurely morning chatting—and you can read my interview on What Do I Wear DC—and find out what I wore—here.
But, without further adieu, let me tell you all about the food.
We began with oysters and mimosas, which is how all the best brunches begin. Republic offers an assortment of bubbly cocktails: mimosas, bellinis, with both mango and peach. The Bellinis, of which we had several, were light, frothy, and satisfying—perfect for a beautiful, hot morning on the patio. We sampled the mimosas, and the Bellinis with both peach and mago puree. We loved ’em all: fresh fruit puree, good bubbly, and the perfect ratio of bubbles to fruit. Bravo!
We ordered a selection of oysters from Maryland, Virginia and the West Coast—they were great. None were too briny—but I love oysters of all varieties provided they’re good and fresh. And they were.
Next up, we couldn’t resist the decadent dessert offerings on the menu. After a brief period of deliberation, we decided on the monkey bread and the doughnuts. Despite not being familiar with the rules of brunch, the girls mandated we order the doughnut, too. These are some savvy Bitches.
The doughnut was delicious, but the monkey bread was the best pastry I’ve sampled in 2015. The doughnut was a warm caramel and bacon doughnut, rich enough to cut into fourths and share between us. The monkey bread, warm, fluffy and layered with rich caramel, was phenomenal. I’ll dream about this breakfast. Damn, that was good.
The menu offers a selection of poached eggs with whatever you’d like— pork belly, hangar steak, sweet potato hash, or arctic char. Liz selected the Arctic char, served with sautéed greens, latke, capers, and a lovely, light and flavorful sauce choron. The dish was presented beautifully, the eggs were appropriately poached, and the fish was flavorful and fresh. This was a well-done, delicious, and unique entree that’s not too heavy for summer’s day.
Another grat menu option is the Republic Po’ Boy, which you can have with Bay oysters, Gulf shrimp, or blackened Virginia catfish.
Angie went for a different sandwich, the fried green tomatoes. The sandwich was served on a thick, fluffy white loaf that was warm and toasty, and served with a side salad. It hit the spot.
I went for the burger—I couldn’t resist once I read it was served on a pretzel bun. That was a good life decision. The burger was cooked medium rare, served on a warm, toasted Pretzel bun, topped with a Djion mustard-ale cheese, and slathered with aioli. It was so incredibly satisfying—and so incredibly messy. I was dripping delicious burger grease all over—and I definitely did not come off as the fashionable blogger they were expecting.
You can order your burger with fries or a side salad; I selected the salad. A large helping of fresh, light mixed greens, the salad was lightly dressed and the perfect complement to a hearty burger.
We lingered awhile on the patio, enjoying the sunshine, warm vibes, and great company, before venturing into the restaurant.
The Bitches say: A+. A very cool restaurant, with great cocktails, fresh seafood, and unique, well-prepared menu offerings.
6939 Laurel Ave.
Takoma Park, Md.
Republic serves brunch on Saturdays and Sundays.