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I remember walking by the unassuming Cedar probably three years ago and deciding to venture in. I soon discovered the restaurant was tucked away in a basement location — you actually have to walk down a flight of forrest-inspired steps to enter (see it yourself). Normally, I can’t do windowless, but they eye-catching decor makes the small space seem open. Here are my “five to try at brunch,” though you can’t really pick incorrectly off of Executive Chef Aaron McCloud’s contemporary menu.

Love bubbles? You’re in luck. Start your meal with some of my favorites. Go for the Flirtini with citrus vodka, passion fruit and champagne or the Fruit Basket with two fruit purees and champagne, and you’ll be ordering round two in no time. Just make sure the server is clear that you want the drink, not the side of fruit.

Cedar makes a fabulous Banana Bread — it’s a side, but I like treating it like an appetizer. The banana bread is fluffy, moist and topped with powdered sugar. No, I won’t share this, though at two slices, it’s good for two people.

I always enjoy seeing how restaurants structure their menus and what headings chefs pick for the sections. Cedar steers mostly away from the boring  “appetizers” and “entrees” lingo and presents us with “Things on Bread” and “Eggs n’ Things.”

I’m a fan of the Hangtown Fry with fried local oysters, applewood bacon, frittata, and gribiche sauce and the House-made Corned Beef Hash with Evensong farm egg, mustard, and spinach, but lately my eyes have been moving towards “Things on Bread.” Enter the Braised Pork Belly BLT: fried egg, smoked tomato compote, basil aioli, and a side of fries. It’s a big dish with bold flavors, and I absolutely love the aioli. My only wish is that it were served on a different kind bread. Cedar does a great job coming up with names for its cocktails. My favorite? The Ideal Husband with gluten-gree vodka and passion fruit puree.

Cedar
822 E St NW
Washington, DC 20004
(202) 637-0012

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