Brunch at The Willard

4.1
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54 reviews
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$50 and over
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American
Join us for brunch on Easter, Mother's Day, Thanksgiving and Christmas Day at The Willard InterContinental Washington D.C. The Willard InterContinental combines American renaissance and luxury —proudly setting the benchmark with two centuries of unrivaled hospitality from its coveted 1400 Pennsylvania Avenue address.

Enjoy a buffet brunch sure to please you and your guests with specialty curated food by Executive Chef Luca De Marchis.

We look forward to sharing a wonderful holiday experience with you.

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What 54 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.1based on recent ratings
4.3
food
4.1
service
4.2
ambience
3.6
value
Noise · Moderate
79% of people would recommend it to a friend
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OT
OpenTable Diner
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on 25 December 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

This was our 4th year in a row and it only gets better every year! Delicious and festive

JS
vipJamesS
Washington DC
9 reviews
Dined on 25 December 2019
Overall3food4service3ambience4

We have attended the Christmas brunch at the Willard for a number of years and it has always been very pleasant. Unfortunately, this year the reservation and check-in process was atrocious. I made a reservation a couple of months in advance for 2 PM for eleven persons. On 12/24, Willard staff called and asked if it would be OK to move the reservation to 2:30. I said I preferred to keep the 2:00 reservation. Then they said I could keep the 2:00 reservation but we would not be seated until 2:30. I said I guess we don't have a choice so the reservation was changed to 2:30. We arrived at 2:30 and found chaos in the lobby with a large number of persons waiting to be seated. I got in line and found out that the person behind me had a reservation originally for 10:30 and they changed it to 2:30. The person in front of me said he originally had a 2:00 PM reservation but they called and changed it to 2:30. After some unpleasantness in the lobby, we eventually were seated at 3:15. All of our party were very concerned that they would stop serving at 4 (the previously announced stop time but staff assured us they would keep it open longer). I think groups need about two hours for the brunch. The Willard did keep serving later so that was not an issue. There is one other point that borders on the ridiculous. After we were seated, a waiter came around to take a drink order from the group. As has happened a couple of times in the past, he took the drink orders from about three persons, left to get those drinks and returned in 5-10 minutes with the three drinks. He then took additional orders from another few people. This happened a third time and it was 20-25 minutes before everyone had a drink. Normally we would have a toast at that point but the group was so worried about the food disappearing that there was no toast. Obviously, the drink orders of the entire group should be taken at once and returned all at once. This seems like basic waiter training.

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
New England
7 reviews
Dined on 25 December 2019
Overall1food1service1ambience1

Utterly rubbish. Would not recommend. Cold food. Rubbish service. Do not waste your money. They even ran out of plates!

OT
OpenTable Diner
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on 25 December 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience3

This was our third consecutive year attending Christmas brunch at the Willard. The quality of the food and service remains excellent. However, we have three suggestions that you may want to consider for the future:

1. Please, please, PLEASE bring back the pianist and harpist! Their presence adds so much warm ambience to the experience.

2. It might help to give the hostesses an amplified microphone system so that when a party's table is finally ready and their name is called out, they can easily hear it from anywhere in the waiting area despite the "joyful noise" of the crowd.

3. While a guaranteed 24% gratuity to the serving staff is absolutely fair given the quality and level of service that we were provided, it would be nice to know in advance, perhaps upon confirmation of the original reservation, that this was being automatically added to our final bill.

Thanks again for a terrific time. See you next year!

CR
CherylR
Washington DC
3 reviews
Dined on 25 December 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

It was so much fun! One of the nicest times e have experienced there! The staff was courteous and accommodating and the food was fabulous!

OT
OpenTable Diner
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on 25 December 2019
Overall3food4service3ambience3

Christmas brunch.

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
Las Vegas
2 reviews
Dined on 25 December 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

6 years in a row for Christmas brunch - a true family tradition. So makes it easy to overlook small things like the hassle of check in / seating, etc

H
Hettyking1
Washington DC
7 reviews
Dined on 25 December 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

As always, the holiday brunch was fantastic. I especially liked the boar stew and lamb chops!

H
Highlander
Washington DC
23 reviews
Dined on 25 December 2019
Overall4food4service4ambience5

The food is good but not great. It's very, very expensive for what you get. But the atmosphere on Christmas Day can't be beat.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Washington DC
8 reviews
Dined on 25 December 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Exceptional variety and quality of food with very attentive service.

The cold seafood incredibly prepared for easy consumption and taste. The lamb and beef was excellent with the wild boar and pheasant providing a throwback experience and taste that complimented the entire brunch menu.
See you for Easter

LG
LuvGreatFood
Orange County
4 reviews
Dined on 25 December 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

By far the best brunch I have ever attended. Food was incredible and a huge variety to choose from. The decor and ambience made for a wonderful Christmas brunch.

RB
RobertB
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on 25 December 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

This is our second Willard Christmas brunch, the first in 2018 with just my wife and I. We loved the experience so much (we stayed at the Willard for three nights), we decided to host our daughter and family in 2019. This was special for them because they were married at the Willard (Jefferson Suite) in 2005.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on 25 December 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Christmas brunch is always very good. But I’m old enough to remember when is was “very good” at a more reasonable $60, and that was only 12 years ago.

But it’s hard to find a nice family feeling with very traditional holiday decorations and over the top buffets. We had a toddler along and he has a great time; made a mess so I tipped heavily. So I come back often.

MC
MarieC
Washington DC
2 reviews
Dined on 25 December 2019
Overall5food5service4ambience5

Wonderful One time experience; too pricey for someone who doesn’t eat a lot. Need more gluten-free options.

LD
LauraD
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on 25 December 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

This was our third year going to Christmas Day brunch at the Willard and it was incredible! Beautiful decorations and five star food and service. What a treat!

TR
TerriR
Washington DC
10 reviews
Dined on 25 December 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

A friend and I have made the Willard Christmas Day brunch an annual event. It’s a shame some show up in jeans and sneakers, it’s so much nicer. Fortunately just a few but enough to distract some from the overall loveliness of the hotel decorations.

OT
OpenTable Diner
1 review
Dined on 28 November 2019
Overall5food5service3ambience5

Thanksgiving brunch was outstanding. great selection of delicious dishes!

v
vacationer
San Francisco
15 reviews
Dined on 28 November 2019
Overall4food4service4ambience5

Good thanksgiving buffet. There was a mix up in our seating so we were left standing for about 15 minutes in the midst of the buffet line as no one had checked that our table was actually available. Even going back to the front wasn’t that helpful as they kept seating other people. Food ok risotto underdone. Good desserts. Mandatory 24% tip and no apology for having to wait standing up in the food corridor.

E
East2013
Washington DC
18 reviews
Dined on 28 November 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Our 15th year dining at the Willard for Thanksgiving brunch. Top notch food, service and ambiance.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on 28 November 2019
Overall4food5service4ambience4

The brunch was amazing. There was an atmosphere of having you finish in an hour and a half, but the servers were kind and the pastry chef was very playful in encouraging us to try the desserts!

G
Goldie
Washington DC
11 reviews
Dined on 28 November 2019
Overall5food5service4ambience5

Food was excellent. Had a variet of food, including an omelette station and Bananas Foster station for dessert. Three different types of stuffing was great and the sweet potatoes were excellent. Multiple food stations. Service was a little slow in getting coffee and water refills. At $125 per person, it is more than other places; but that is to be expected for a holiday brunch. Valet parking was free with validation.
Also, be aware that the tip is already added to the bill at 24% and listed as a banquet facility charge.

EW
EphWilliams
Washington DC
5 reviews
Dined on 28 November 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Everything was EXCELLENT. The food was really good. The staff were attentive.

MP
vipMsParticular
Chicago
171 reviews
Dined on 28 November 2019
Overall4food4service2ambience3

There was plenty of variety. If you want a traditional turkey dinner this was GREAT (although they did not keep the dark meat stocked on the buffet).
There was also great prime rib and ham and excellent sides.
I happen to be allergic to fish and shellfish but the shellfish table looked AMAZING (although my daughter said one of the many shrimp she ate was not as fresh as it could be).
For people such as myself who are allergic to fish and shellfish the labeling of everything could have been better. Same for vegetarians and gluten free- better labeling is needed.
The dessert table was excellent with a large variety of mini desserts which were in general very good.
The service was OK. At first it was a little disorganized when the drink orders were being taken. And the used plates could have been cleared a little more quickly. But everyone was EXTREMELY nice and pleasant. We were not rushed away from the table to accommodate the next group which was very nice.
Overall it was a very good experience.

N
Nelsa
1 review
Dined on 28 November 2019
Overall3food2service4ambience2

Some of the food such as grains and pasta was undercooked to the point that it was rock hard. The seafood tasted as if it has been in the fridge for more than a day then left on ice for a long time before consumed. It took on a very fishy smell and was tough to chew. The cocktail beverages were of extremely low quality and my guest preferred to not even drink either of the drinks she ordered. First time I have ever seen her not drink a cocktail. Bloody Mary just not good. Zing Zang and vodka would have been fine,
this was strange. We tried a variety of items and decided not to eat any more nor try dessert. Neither of us mentioned it until we left and we ate again after somewhere else. Everyone had friendly greetings, the food selection had a greasy appearance but that is as good as it got. The room was just a plain and slightly outdated meeting room. We were seated in the corner of a smaller back room partially in the doorway and partially facing a wall corner creating an obstructed flow and zero ambiance. Felt like I was placed in storage. Table legs seemed like they really weren't for that table, if it was a table, blocked both your feet on both sides of the table. This made it difficult to sit without tripping and forcing you to spread your legs wide and sit far off the table. Charge was 125 x 2 with tax and other auto charged fees bringing the breakfast for two in over $340. All of the standard DMV restaurants and even chains would have been a better choice with properly prepared food and drinks. I am embarrassed I brought a guest to this experience. Though I was clear on the cost, better meal and drinks could have been had(and was afterwards) for less than $35 a person leaving me to still feel taken.

e
elisea
Washington DC
3 reviews
Dined on 21 April 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Holiday brunches at The Willard are the height o luxury. Been going to Christmas Brunch for many years and wouldn't miss it for the world. And now will add Easter Brunch to our "must dos." Every type of amazing food you can imagine, gorgeous setting, amazing service. This is a luxury for sure but it is truly worth every penny. Reserve early - they sell out!

J
Jane
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on 21 April 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

My family attends the Willard Easter Brunch every year!
We had the pleasure of meeting Luca and congratulating him on a perfect menu.

RR
vipRaymondR
Washington DC
9 reviews
Dined on 21 April 2019
Overall3food4service2ambience3

We’ve been coming to Easter brunch here for several years and this year service was suboptimal considering the price point. When paying $135 per person for lunch (plus an additional 24% auto gratuity), service should be impeccable, and it was not. On a positive note, the Easter bunny and egg hunt were nice touches and valet parking being included was also helpful.

CS
ClaudeteS
Philadelphia
1 review
Dined on 21 April 2019
Overall3food3service2ambience4

We didn’t have a good experience because we had a table on our side with parents with a kid listening “cartoons” the whole brunch and I ask to the waiter if he could ask them to turn down the volume and he couldn’t do anything. So it was very annoying!

KS
KellyS
1 review
Dined on 21 April 2019
Overall4food4service4ambience5

It was a lovely time with my family. We enjoyed all the brunch stations, especially the charcuterie one! That was my stepdad's favorite. We were impressed with the service and the variety of food. It's a wonderful brunch experience.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Chicago
1 review
Dined on 21 April 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The most elegant setting for an Easter brunch, with every detail and need attended to. What a great place to celebrate my parents’ 50th anniversary - we are already planning to come back next year!

B
Briana
Denver
4 reviews
Dined on 21 April 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Absolutely wonderful. Yes, it’s pricey, but worth every penny. Great experience. Definitely would go again.

SK
StephenK
1 review
Dined on 25 December 2018
Overall1food2service1ambience2

Pretty standard buffet fare, oddly served in a cramped, crowded corridor. Some dishes were on point (eg. the lobster tails) while others were totally off (eg. the overcooked duck). Waiters well serviced the tables around us, while all but ignoring us for the entire afternoon. Plates were extremely slow to be cleared. And we only received one top up of the cheap cava on offer and no after dinner coffee. We later read that this hotel has had some issues with homophobia, so maybe that explains the snub.

FK
FritzK
Washington DC
9 reviews
Dined on 25 December 2018
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great selection of food and drink. Staff was attentive and plates were endless. great setting for a special Christmas Buffet. I would recommend that they offer cappuccino alongside the coffee.

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on 25 December 2018
Overall1food2service1ambience1

We won’t be coming back. It was overcrowded and the service was awful. The bread was hard as a rock. We asked for espresso and never got it. When seated, who we guessed was our waitress, asked for our ticket and asked how old my daughter was. When I said seven she informed me that she would be half price. Very tacky. The Willard is clearly resting on their long history instead of creating a good Christmas experience.
For how much we paid, we definitely expected more. We definitely were surprised when our name was yelled into the corridor announcing that our table was ready. Felt like we were at the sizzler.

MB
MichaelB
Washington DC
5 reviews
Dined on 25 December 2018
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Appreciated the diversity of foods available and the service was great!

JH
JoeH
Baltimore
12 reviews
Dined on 25 December 2018
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Christmas Brunch was outstanding! There was an amazing variety of foods and we were all impressed with the seafood offered. Clams, large steamed shrimp, crab legs, lobster tails, etc. The variety of meats was also impressive with lamb and veal chops, pork, roast tenderloin and ham -- it was all delicious! There were more desserts than I've ever seen at a buffet. The hotel was decorated beautifully and the staff could not have been more helpful. The Gingerbread recreation of National Airport was very impressive!

My family thoroughly enjoyed our day there!

MG
MarieG
Louisville
1 review
Dined on 25 December 2018
Overall3food5service1ambience5

Food and decorations were wonderful; however, the poor service was almost unbearable.

CE
vipChristyE
Washington DC
4 reviews
Dined on 25 December 2018
Overall3food4service3ambience2

This was our first time at the Willard for Christmas brunch and likely our last. The food was good, but it was so crowded that it wasn't very enjoyable. It started in front of the hotel. There were more than a dozen cars sitting in two lanes that were backed up around the corner. Once inside, we were greeted by throngs of people standing in a couple of vaguely defined but obviously long lines. We had to wait in line to check in and then to receive a glass of champagne. The champagne line snaked around the foyer with about 40 people waiting. It was loud and impossible to stand anywhere without being in the way. Once we were seated, the waiter offered us more champagne but directed us to one of the tables on the buffet for coffee and tea. The buffet was in a long hallway flanked by large ballrooms that were being used as dining rooms. The buffet had a pancake bar, omelettes, a carving station, charcuterie, a seafood station, a dessert table and a table with coffee and tea. The food was great, but it is impossible to overstate how crowded it was. It was similar to a sold out stadium-long lines for concessions, close quarters and a pulsing throng of people all trying to get to their seats. I was constantly bumping into people and couldn't move without at least brushing up against other people. I spilled my tea a couple of times just trying to navigate back to my table. This is a small thing, but the tea cups were tiny and the only way to get tea or coffee was to go back out into the hall and push through all of the people and refill the cup. It was a jumble of unpleasant experiences that I might expect at say, Founding Farmers whose brunch is $30 but it was entirely unacceptable for a meal that cost $125 a person. At that price point, good food is not enough. I expect that every aspect of the meal and experience will be exceptional. The Willard had good food, but it was entirely overshadowed by the myriad of little inconveniences and the swarming mass of people.

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
Washington DC
9 reviews
Dined on 25 December 2018
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The Christmas buffet was better than the Willard Easter and Thanksgiving buffets combined.
The incredible combination of boar, pheasant and duck took us back to early memory dinners with grandparents in the country.
The prime rib was the finest I have ever had for taste, tenderness and rare to perfection. Congratulations to the Chef

SK
SandiK
1 review
Dined on 25 December 2018
Overall3food5service5ambience5

24% service fee added is excessive
Other then that it was fantastic. However the fee along with taxes adds up to make it a average value

FAQs

Brunch at The Willard is rated 4.1 stars by 54 OpenTable diners.

You can book this restaurant by choosing the date, time and party size.