I am not a morning person, at all. I like my sleep, and the only thing that can get me out of bed before noon on the weekends is brunch. I was feeling especially tired on this particular Saturday and almost cancelled my brunch plans with my two friends, Maddie and Jen, but I didn’t. I went heavy on the tinted moisturizer and the dry shampoo and promptly called an Uber. Exhausting, I know.
We all have busy schedules and have trouble coordinating time together, as many friends do. But, thankfully, we all made it Urbana on time—very surprising. Urbana is a relatively large venue right off of Dupont Circle that’s connected to Hotel Palomar, a modern hotel from Kimpton. The restaurant is nearly hidden, as you have to walk down a staircase to enter. We’re glad we made the trek and found the spot, however, because our experience was quite lovely. We had a reservation and were promptly seated in the dining room upon entry. Our waitress was attentive and anticipatory of our every need. On our visit, Urbana provided great service.
Maddie and I went for the bottomless Bellinis, naturally. Jen however, went for plain orange juice which she said was very fresh. The bottomless Bellinis are $16 which is pretty standard for D.C. Urbana also serves bottomless Bloody Marys for $18 which is a good deal as well.
Now, these Bellinis were not just regular bottomless Bellinis. Instead of our glasses being refilled constantly, we received our own bottle of prosecco and three fruit purees (raspberry, blackberry, and mango) that change seasonally. I love this! It is the best way to do bottomless for many reasons. For one, you aren’t being interrupted by your waiter every ten minutes to ask if you want a refill—the answer is usually yes anyway. Second, you get to control the ratio of Prosecco to juice. Heavy on the Prosecco, light on the juice. Obviously.
Now for the food. Urbana is a contemporary Italian restaurant and has a good number of paninis, pastas, and pizzas on their brunch menu for those who are more lunch than brunch people. A great option in my book. There were plenty brunchy options that I was quite pleased with as well.
I always order French toast because I am incapable of making it myself, and I like to take advantage when available. I am a sort of expert in all things French toast now. This particular dish came with Nutella, caramelized bananas, and finely chopped nuts and cocoa nibs. It was delicious. The toast was perfectly cooked and the perfect amount of Nutella was sandwiched in between the slices—not too much, not too little. My only complaint was with the bananas. They were perfectly caramelized, but the banana was definitely not ripe yet. It was very hard which was unfortunate, but the flavor was good. I would order again and ask beforehand about the ripeness of the bananas.
Maddie ordered the spinach frittata, which was very unique. It was not thick and fluffy, which is how I think of frittata, but more like a thin pizza with the egg mixture on top. It was topped with goat cheese, artichokes, tomatoes, and baby greens tossed in a light vinaigrette. The dish was different and very tasty.
Jen always orders the most basic meal on the menu—and I always tease her for being basic. She got a margarita pizza, but really spiced things up this time and added two sunny-side up eggs on top. They made for a very pretty picture. The pizza crust was crispy and the sauce was very flavorful. The eggs were nice touch and made Jen feel more brunchy.
At this point, we were all more than halfway through our meals and nearly done with our bubbly. Without our prompting, our waitress plopped down a second bottle of Prosecco. Once again, great service. Maddie and I gladly refilled our champagne flutes yet again and had fun trying the different fruit purees and discussing our favorites. My only concern is that the juices get mixed together when using the same glass. However, if that is really bothersome, I’m sure the wait staff would bring out clean glasses after each juice. I’m not that picky though, so I was happy mixing away.
We also tried the applewood smoked bacon and sage pork sausage. Both were flavorful but not greasy. These were definitely good quality meats.
As we sat and digested our yummy brunches and sipped the last of our Bellinis and beverages, our waitress left the check and told us to take our time. So we did. We even started on another bottle of Prosecco and were not rushed even after we paid. I greatly enjoyed the relaxing pace and chill atmosphere. Some restaurants can be quite stingy on time limits for bottomless deals, Urbana is a notable exception.
The Bitches say A-. The food is delicious and comforting, without breaking the bank. The space would be great for large parties and we definitely recommend the reasonably-priced and truly bottomless Bellinis or Bloodys.
Urbana serves brunch Saturdays and Sundays and breakfast Monday through Friday. (202) 956-6650