There are times (we hope) when you take that last-minute day off, get to work from home, or have a leisurely three day weekend on the calendar. Whatever the occasion, you’re free! Before you frantically Google search “best lunch specials in D.C.,” here are a few essential weekday spots for a brunch or early lunch to brighten your weekday autopilot desk meal.
If you’re going to have pastries, buttery sandwiches, and frothy lattes, you might as well get that Parisian aesthetic right. Ladurée is known for its sweet treats and morning delights. Their daytime menu is consistent every day of the week. Take a quick trip to Paris without leaving the West End of D.C. Read our review here.
Ladurée, 3060 M St N.W., Washington, D.C. 20007
For all our health-nuts out there, Dirt is a boujee new mecca for breakfast and lunch that will taste just as good as healthy feels. From açaí bowls to grain bowls and sandwiches, Dirt serves up every Instagramable health-fad you could possibly imagine, but it’s actually pretty legit: everything is delicious, but not overly restrictive.
Dirt, 4121 Wilson Blvd Suite 102B, Arlington, VA 22203
Bluestone Lane has taken over D.C. Nonetheless, their divine brekkie bowls and piled high avocado toast are guaranteed satisfaction for a weekday brunch. Whether you’re just there to sip flat whites or you’re getting a flight of juice shots, Bluestone Lane has your back. Read our review here.
Bluestone Lane, 1100 23rd St N.W., Washington, D.C. 20037 (West End).
Green Almond Pantry
Hardly a restaurant and more of a farm-to-table lunch counter, Green Almond Pantry serves fresh bread, salads, and snacks in a seriously impressive fashion. Everything is made from scratch, and they have beautifully packaged items to take to-go. This tiny spot is a great place for some bliss and a casual weekday bite.
Green Almond Pantry, 1314 9th Street N.W. Washington, D.C. 20001
A Baked Joint
We want to go to A Baked Joint every Saturday. Thing is, we can’t because that type of patience is not something we are prepared to supply on a weekly basis. Weekdays are the perfect time to indulge in “OMG” bars, perfect breakfast sammies, and one of the best chai lattes in all of D.C. Read our review here.
A Baked Joint, 440 K St N.W., Washington, D.C. 20001
This is the taco/coffee shop of your wildest dreams. It’s perfect for a coffee date, to crank out work, have a drink, or consume infinite tacos. The tacos are filling and flavorful, but their other items and coffee menu are also on point. Read our review here.
Republic Cantina, 43 N St N.W., Washington, D.C. 20001
Centrolina is that market/restaurant you always pass while taking photos of the latest seasonal overhead art installation in City Center. The spot no longer serves Sunday brunch, but their weekday lunch menu is just as salivating. Read our review here.
Centrolina, 974 Palmer Alley N.W., Washington, D.C. 20001
Piccolina is that cafe/restaurant across from that market/restaurant you always pass. The new coffee shop, bakery, and light bite establishment is a tiny lux spot for all things breakfast-y and lunch-y. They serve an assortment of house focaccia, meat and cheese plates, and to-die-for pastries.
Piccolina, 963 Palmer Alley N.W. Washington, D.C.
Weekday lunch is made easy at All Purpose. Reliable Neapolitan pizza pies, sandwiches, and antipasti are craveable and affordable. There’s no mid-week dilemma that a meal here cannot fix. Even if you’re working, it’s totally worth it to sneak in a spritz or two. Read our review here.
All Purpose, 1250 9th St N.W., Washington, D.C. 20001
The Smith has “work lunch” written all over it. It has that fancy-ish vibe without being a stuck up, white-tablecloth establishment. They have a bit of everything for everyone and have great weekday drink specials. Indulging in a burger and fries or mac and cheese is always a good idea, but they also have delicious large plates and salads. Read our review here.
The Smith, 1314 U St N.W., Washington, D.C. 20009
We agree with you… D.C. needs more casual diners. We will say, though, that as untraditional as “Unconventional Diner” might sound, it gets the job done. It has a little bit of something for everyone. Health seekers and indulgers alike can find fun, diner classics with a twist. Shakes, fish sticks, chicken noodle soup, and more. Read our review here.
Unconventional Diner, 1207 9th St N.W., Washington, D.C. 20001
The light flavors of Pappe are craving-worthy any day of the week. This spot is nice enough to have a work gathering or lunch with grandma, but it’s also chill enough to take back some cardamom cocktails and samosas. Brunch and dinner have similar offerings, but the daytime menu has some signature light-fare that’s worth checking out. Read our review here.
Pappe, 1317 14th St N.W., Washington, D.C. 20005
Maketto is where you take cool visitors when they get off their train at Union Station early on a Friday morning. There’s a hip, street style boutique in the front of the shop and an incredible food and beverage program in the back. Enjoy cafe style dim sum, Asian beers, loose leaf tea and cold brew every day of the week. Read our review here.
Maketto, 1351 H St N.E., Washington, D.C. 20002
Big Bear Cafe
Hiding beneath a perfect pergola of ivy is Big Bear Cafe. A day to night eatery with warming cups of coffee and chilly ciders. In reality, this menu is classic American fare that varies from healthy to decadent, but it feels somewhat hipster and crunchy thanks to its calm, laid back aesthetic. Read our review here.
Big Bear Cafe, 1700 1st Street N.W. Washington, D.C. 20001
DC Harvest is H Street’s staple farm-to-table establishment. Rotating menus and killer signature cocktails are ready for the taking on weekdays, weeknights, and weekends. They have special events and dinners, too, but feel free to stroll in during a weekday for a hearty, healthy, mid-afternoon brunch bounty. Read our review here.
DC Harvest, 517 H St NE, Washington, D.C. 20002
The Balkan region has made a celebrity appearance in the D.C. restaurant scene. Dips, kabobs, and all of the khachapuri (the bread-boat looking thing filled with cheese and an egg) are all the rage, especially for brunch. Supra offers a weekday lunch special that’s pretty hard to beat at $20 for two courses. Read our review here.
Supra, 1205 11th St N.W., Washington, D.C. 20001
Boqueria has our heart for brunches and weekday happy hours. It also doesn’t take much convincing to pay a visit for their weekday lunch price fixe at $29 – or their a la carte jamón sandwiches. Whether it’s their DuPont or Penn Quarter location, your brunch morning lunch needs are taken care of. Read our review here.
Boqueria, 1837 M St N.W., Washington, D.C. 20036 (Dupont) 777 9th St N.W. Washington, D.C. 20001 (Penn Quarter)
There’s a gourmet sandwich shortage in D.C. Sorrelina is the weekday breakfast and lunch spot that needs more attention. This Dupont basement shop is quaint, inviting, and has got the goods, the sandwich, and the sides. Specialty breakfast items are served until 3:00 p.m., and their bounty of sandwich options only gets better as the day goes on.
Sorrelina, 2029 P St N.W., Washington, D.C. 20036
Espita’s tacos are truly works of art, so we feel a little bit guilty when we finish them in three bites. The homemade tortillas and unique combinations are delights of the taco world as we know it. And don’t forget to try the mezcal margarita! Read our review here.
Espita, 1250 9th St N.W., Washington, D.C. 20001