Brunch at Momofuku – Will you Love or Hate it?

If I could describe Momofuku CCDC in one word it would be – unapologetic. Every person who seems to go eat there is coming fully and proudly as themselves, there for you to like or not. Clearly one can see Momofuku has established a niche clientele.

Momofuku’s first restaurant in the DC area opened in October 2015 and serves a menu that changes with the seasons if not daily. The restaurant is divided into different sections including a bar, noodle bar, main dining room and private dining room. As I went to sample their brunch menu on a Sunday morning, my theory of Momofuku’s niche clientele was confirmed as I discussed the culture with the General Manager, Robert Harding. He said “Our brunch menu is very unique. You either love it or hate it and we are happy with that. We do not serve the traditional brunch styled menus found around DC but we stick true to ourselves and the food we believe in.” The General Manager himself also embodied that unapologetic, this is me, take it or leave it culture. After having taken my personal food journey with Momofuku, I understood why. Let’s dig in.

Our order was: Fried Brussels Sprouts, Shrimp and Shiitake Buns, Rice Cakes and ice cream.

DC has for some reason been on fire with the fried brussels sprouts dish. As I tasted the fried brussels sprouts mixed with fish sauce vinaigrette, cilantro and mint, I found my eyes open and taste buds explode. After having tasted the brussels sprouts at Doi Moi, I did not think I would find a place that did it better.. but I was definitely proven wrong and I can now say Momofuku makes the best brussels sprouts in DC at least so far.

However this enthusiasm did not stay while we tasted the Buns. Both the shrimp and shiitake buns lacked the flavor we were expecting, especially the shrimp. They have other options such as brisket, chicken meatball and bacon/egg/cheese and perhaps these dishes embody more flavor. I will definitely be back to sample the others to see if I could be proven wrong.

Shiitake Bun
Shrimp Bun

The Rice Cakes (which is both gluten-free and vegetarian) was the winner of the brunch menu and as the General Manager told us is the customers favorite. Each bite felt like the warmest hug.The rice cakes come in a pasta style with a creamy sauce (cabbage we believe) topped with scallions and chickpeas. I would highly recommend getting this dish if you are looking for something comforting and filling. Make sure not to eat this dish then go to the gym, it is not a light dish.

Finally, my favorite part of any meal, dessert. Momofuku and Milk Bar operate as sister/brother. Momofuku serves Milk Bar’s dessert menu and we decided to go straight to what they are most known for – soft serve ice cream. The soft serve comes in cereal milk, birthday cake or fruity cereal milk. We went with the birthday cake (Sunday mornings can always do with birthday cakes!). The soft serve is made out of the birthday layer cake topped with plenty of sprinkles!

As we cleaned the plate from the soft serve, we regrouped to discuss the food journey we just went on. One person hated it, she said it just was not her style but myself and another person shared strong enthusiasm and love for Momofuku’s style, menu and ambiance. As the General Manager said the brunch menu will make you will either love or hate it and indeed that was the case. I loved it and will be there soon. Have you tried Momofuku’s brunch? Did you fall in team love or hate? Let us know and make sure to follow Momofuku here: Twitter, Facebook, Instagram 


Gluten-free Readers: 

For our gluten-free readers Momofuku gets a 3/5. They unfortunately do not have gluten-free items to replace the buns but can work on replacing the noodles with something else. Here are the list of gluten-free items (keep in mind the kitchen can adjust other items to make them gluten-free except the buns):

  1. Cobb salad
  2. Wedgeless Wedge salad
  3. Momo Bop bowl
  4. Rice Cakes
  5. Fried Brussels Sprouts
  6. Pickles|Kimchi

Happy eating!

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