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[Photo: Matchbox]

A few of us met up for a fat happy brunch at Matchbox this week. We chose Capitol Hill (Eastern Market metro), but you’ll see the same menu at their Chinatown and new 14th St NW locations. In my experience, you can get seated easily at Capitol Hill and Chinatown till about noon, at which point you may need to down a brunch cocktail or two at the bar while you wait for a table. We haven’t checked out 14th Street yet so any comments would be most welcome!

First I’m going to talk about something we skipped on this trip but that you definitely should not: Banana Bread French Toast. Yes, Matchbox has figured out the winningest answer to that perpetual question of what to dip in french toast batter and throw on the griddle. The result is decadent and moist, especially when dunked in rummy maple syrup:


Banana Bread French Toast [Photo: Foodspotting]

On this visit we opted for a skillet of cinnamon rolls, which, at $6, is the perfect sweet snack to share before or after your main meal. The cream cheese frosting is creamy and just sweet enough. Plus the skillet with the center roll squished in is just so darn cute:

Cinnamon rolls

Cinnamon rolls

Watching your caloric intake, you say? Forget about it. Once you realize that the cocktails are as good as they sound – like the pear-infused Capitol Hill or house mimosa with Patron citronage – you’ll see that there’s just no point.

Matchbox mimosa

Matchbox mimosa

I debated between a veggie frittata with mushrooms, goat cheese, spinach, and pesto, and huevos rancheros (the huevos rancheros aren’t veggie after all – see Rina’s comment below!). Beans and guac won, and I wasn’t disappointed. The black beans were full of flavor and the giant tostada bottom and chipotle sour cream rounded everything out nicely.

Huevos rancheros

Huevos rancheros

My dining companion ordered the pizza special minus the sausage, with tomatoes, basil and a balsamic vinegar reduction. It was fine but nothing spectacular, similar to our previous experiences with pizza here. There are much better places to get a pie around the city, so do yourself a favor and stick to traditional brunch foods when you come to  Matchbox.

Pizza with sun-dried tomatoes, basil and balsamic reduction

Pizza with sun-dried tomatoes, basil and balsamic reduction

Speaking of brunch classics, a couple of other things to note in the ‘what I didn’t order this time but you should’ category:

Potatoes – An order of the savory brunch potatoes is only $4 and easily big enough for two people to share as a side. It’s a lovely hash of fingerling potatoes, roasted red peppers and Spanish onions that will leave you feeling ultra-satisfied.

Waffles – Here’s a trick: rather than going for the fresh fruit waffle for $11, just order a single waffle with butter and syrup ($2) from the sides menu and add a side of fruit if you want ($4). This saves you both money and precious tummy-real-estate, which we all need at brunch. It’s crispy and fluffy on the inside, just like homemade!

Fruit and Granola – for a healthy and tasty option, try this parfait, with honey-orange Greek yogurt, homemade granola, and honey-whipped cream. The protein-packed yogurt and whole grains will fuel you up and get you ready for the day!

713 H St NW

Capitol Hill (Eastern Market Metro)
521 8th St SE

14th St (U Street Metro)
1901 14th St NW