“Mmmm…” a friend sighed contentedly into her glass of hot buttered rum, “liquor pie…”
Brunch with the girls at Vermilion on a chilly afternoon was a mellow affair, lingering over hot toddies in the brick-walled upstairs room. With the place almost all to ourselves, we curled into a corner table and indulged to celebrate a birthday.
Vermilion serves brunch on Saturdays and Sundays from 11:00am – 2:30am, with an eclectic menu that ranges from eggs and french toast to scallops and bifteki. The hot drinks were especially welcome, as was the laid-back service allowing us to savor everything without feeling rushed. And of course, any place that serves lamb sausage ranks high on my happy meter.
Vermilion’s version is glazed with pomegranate sauce, nested on brussels sprouts and chestnut puree – making for a delectable plate of sweet and spice. All the girls raved about this dish, the clear hit of our brunch. Other standouts were the deconstructed salad of hearts of romaine, roasted cherry tomatoes, white anchovy & pumpernickel croutons, and the diver scallops with potato gratin, leeks, and black truffle.
Sadly I wasn’t as thrilled with my sourdough french toast – I prefer french toast to have thick slices, and these were too thin for my tastes – but the sweetened mascarpone and apple butter that accompanied it definitely improved my opinion once I slathered them on.
Dessert was perfect – the winter squash trio featured a pumpkin roll, kabocha brûlée & butternut ice cream sandwich that were all divine and an interesting way to highlight squash as a sweet option. The chocolate bread pudding with pears, port wine syrup and pistachio ice cream sent the girls into a chorus of purring. By the end of the meal we were in a pampered and happy haze, vowing to return to snuggle into the sexy downstairs lounge and catch up more.
Vermilion is located at 1120 King St. in Alexandria, Virginia. Nearest Metro stop: King Street (Blue and Yellow lines). For more information, call (703) 684-9669.