DC area’s best family brunch spots

WASHINGTON Having kids changes your life in many ways but it doesn’t have to change your brunch plans.

Sure, you may not be able to sleep in and follow your leisurely morning with hours of eating and drinking, but there’s no reason to deprive yourself of eggs Benny and bloodys.

Red Tricycle parenting and travel writer Guiomar Ochoa shares some of her favorite family-friendly brunch spots in the D.C. area:

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Chef Geoff’s and Lia’s It helps that the chef and owner of Chef Geoff’s and Lia’s, Geoff Tracy, has three kids of his own. As Ochoa puts it, “He gets it.” The staff at his restaurants are known to accommodate families even going so far as to make menu modifications for the toothless set. (Fancy a side of mashed potatoes or mashed avocado, anyone?)   “But they also have a great [kid’s] menu, and it’s not just chicken fingers and french fries,” Ochoa said. Some of the options include French toast with berry compote, Sunday egg scramble, Belgian waffles, and lunch options such as cheeseburgers and grilled cheese sandwiches. “What I love is their dirt pudding dessert. It’s chocolate pudding, crumbled Oreos and gummy worms, so kids love this,” Ochoa added. Adults aren’t left out, either. Menu items range from smoked salmon Benedict to breakfast tacos, sandwiches, salads, and yes, bottomless mimosas. (WTOP/Michelle Basch) (WTOP/Michelle Basch)
Firefly Located on New Hampshire Avenue near Dupont Circle is Firefly, an American-focused restaurant with options for vegans, vegetarians and the gluten-free. When it comes to brunch for the kiddos, Firefly sticks to the classics. On the menu is a peanut butter and jelly with banana; cereal with milk; and eggs, bacon and toast. The best part of the meal, though, is the activity that comes before the food. “Every child gets a cookie to decorate. Instead of giving them a coloring book to play with, they get a cookie and things to decorate the cookie with. And then they bake it while you’re having brunch or dinner or lunch, and then they get the cookie as dessert,” Ochoa said.   (WTOP/Michelle Basch)
First Watch This breakfast and lunch spot has eight locations in the DMV. The menu has some sophisticated options for adults — try lemon ricotta pancakes or a “superfoods” bowl with coconut milk chia seed pudding, berries and granola — and the tried-and-true plates for kids, including chocolate chip pancakes. “It’s a really fun place if you don’t want to go to a pancake house, but you want something a little bit more like a diner with better options for parents,” Ochoa said. (WTOP/Michelle Basch)
Mrs. K’s Toll House If you’re celebrating something special, head to Mrs. K’s Toll House in Silver Spring, Maryland. Brunch is served buffet-style, making it the perfect option for impatient kiddos. “They’re not waiting around for food; they can just get up and go. If your child is hungry, you can get them something to eat quickly,” Ochoa said.   The spread includes a carving station, an omelet station and a Belgian waffle station — “Which I think is really fun for kids,” Ochoa said. “It’s a really quaint little place.” (WTOP/Michelle Basch)
Wildfire This outpost in McLean, Virginia, caters to kids with menu items like Cinnamon Toast Crunch French toast and chocolate chip pancakes. Plus, the restaurant hosts several family-friendly activities, including an Easter Egg Hunt and cookie decorating classes. “And worse case: It’s inside Tysons Galleria, so if you really need to bribe them, you can always take them for a toy or something afterward,” Ochoa said. Adults can kick back and enjoy a bacon, cheddar and fried egg-stuffed burger, plus mimosa flights. (WTOP/Michelle Basch)
Ted’s Bulletin This famed D.C. eatery makes it known that kids are welcome in its dining room. “The restaurant is named after the owner’s father, Ted, and he was known to feed the whole neighborhood from his personal garden, so they really want to feed everybody; they welcome everybody,” Ochoa said. And there’s no doubt the young ones in your group will welcome a homemade pop tart or doughnut from the restaurant’s pastry counter. Adults can indulge in a boozy milkshake, plus all of the comfort-food classics. (WTOP/Rachel Nania)  (WTOP File Photo)
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