Meet Prince Charming for Brunch at The New York Palace Hotel

In honor of 'Rodgers + Hammerstein’s Cinderella,' dine like a princess at New York’s iconic hotel

Ever dream of being a princess? Now’s your chance. If you haven’t heard the big news already, then let us spread the excitement: Rodgers + Hammerstein’s Cinderella is making its first-ever debut on Broadway.

Though the show doesn’t go into previews until January, it's time to live like a royal at New York’s landmark hotel, The New York Palace.

Ideal for both little princesses and grown-up princesses, The Palace, the musical's official hotel sponsor, will set the scene of a fairytale for you. Behold the Cinderella Brunch, featuring whimsical entrées and delights for all ages.

The themed brunch will be offered Saturdays and Sundays from noon to 2:30 p.m. For young princes and princesses, special dishes include a "Build Your Own Castle" Yogurt Parfait, Prince Charming Burger, and Royal Wedding "Something Blue" Cupcakes.

For the hotel’s young-at-heart guests, dishes include a Fairy Godmother Frittata, "Back By Midnight" Belgian Waffles, and Pumpkin Coach Cheesecake. A special brunch cocktail will also be offered — the Princess Bellini Martini, featuring Ketel One Vodka, peach purée and a splash of champagne.

Sounds enchanting, right?

In addition, Prince Charming himself will make an appearance each Saturday and Sunday to pose for photos with guests and let them try on the special glass slipper.

What are you waiting for? Prince Charming, a glass slipper, a royal brunch — let’s go! For more on brunch and their other Cinderella packages head here.

Meet Prince Charming for Brunch at The New York Palace Hotel - Recipes

Savor award-winning chef Daniel Boulud's seasonal French cuisine inspired by the market in the sumptuous Venetian Renaissance style dining room or in the Bellecour Room, available for private parties. To ensure the excellence of his cuisine, Daniel Boulud has established a ki.

#2. Le Bernardin

Le Bernardin

Le Bernardin, New York's internationally acclaimed four star seafood restaurant, was born in Paris in 1972 by sibling duo Maguy and Gilbert Le Coze. Dedicated entirely to the cuisine of Gilbert Le Coze, the self-taught seafood wizard, it only served fish: Fresh, simple and prepar.

#3. Aquavit


Located in Park Avenue Tower at 65 East 55th Street between Park and Madison Avenues in Midtown New York, Aquavit offers modern takes on modern Nordic Cuisine complemented by an extensive winelist and an Aquavit infusion and cocktail program. Aquavit transforms Nordic cuisine wit.

#4. per se

Per se

After per se opened in 2004 it quickly established itself as one of New York City's top restaurants. With per se, Thomas Keller brings his distinctive hands-on approach from Napa Valley's French Laundry to New York City. The restaurant reflects his intense focus on detail that ex.

#5. Jean Georges

Jean Georges

The eponymous crown jewel in Jean-Georges Vongerichten's global culinary empire, Jean-Georges also one of the city's greatest restaurants, with accolades from the James Beard Foundation and nearly everyone else, including four stars from the New York Times and three Michelin star.

#6. Gramercy Tavern

Gramercy Tavern

One of America's most beloved restaurants, Gramercy Tavern serves inventive American cuisine in a rustic yet elegant setting. Opened in 1994 by legendary restaurateur Danny Meyer in a historic landmark building, the Tavern has welcomed guests to enjoy its contemporary American cu.

#7. Masa

At Masa Takayama's namesake restaurant, you won't find standard menus any more than you'll find the standard sushi chef. While he's been in the States since 1980, working at his craft in Los Angeles and New York, Takayama's beginnings in Tokyo laid the foundations and set the cou.

#8. DB Bistro Moderne

DB Bistro Moderne

A modern French-American bistro where the traditions of French cuisine meet the flavors of the American market with a menu reflecting the changing seasons and a focus on the simplicity of fine ingredients. This is perhaps best reflected in Daniel Boulud's now notorious take on th.

#9. Blue Smoke

Blue Smoke

Danny Meyer followed up his uncommon string of successes—Union Square Care, Gramercy Tavern, Eleven Madison Park—with a more casual restaurant, something that evoked the comfort and cuisine of the American South, but with his own fine-dining flair. The result, Blue Smoke, serves .

#10. Red Rooster

Red Rooster

Named in honor of legendary Harlem speakeasy, Red Rooster is renowned chef Marcus Samuelsson's exploration of the roots of American cuisine and the diverse traditions of Harlem, the neighborhood he calls home. serves comfort food that celebrates the roots of American cuisine .

#11. Craft


Craft reminds diners of the basics of ambience and fine cuisine. From the oversized, workbench-inspired tables to the catwalk above the bar, Craft pays homage to the art & craft of preparing a meal. While this restaurant has clearly jumped the shark in terms of being hot or tren.

#12. Perry St.

Perry St.

A 60-seat restaurant amidst the three gleaming Richard Meier glass towers along rapidly-developing West Street, celebrity chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten pares it down with his latest offering. Rather than the over-the-top attributes that characterized 66, Spice Market and V Steak.

#13. Mercer Kitchen

Mercer Kitchen

Global phenom chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten, never satisfied with success for too long, brings American-Proven๺l cuisine the the Mercer Hotel. The Mercer Kitchen is a far more relaxed affair than the chef's eponymous𠅊nd duly celebrated—restaurant, with two hundred seats the co.

#14. Buddakan New York

Buddakan New York

Asian fusion hits Chelsea Market right where fabled Buddha Bar made only a transitory appearance. Here on the Ninth Avenue side, previously home to a lumber business and with an eye-popping 17,000 square feet on two floors, Buddakan provides some additional west side balance to t.


The weather that afternoon co-operated brilliantly, with warm sunshine, allowing the hundred carefully selected guests to circulate on the lawns then “at the very best of season.” A string orchestra played in the marquee in the centre of the west lawn, where staff served tea. The Albertan newspaper provided a verbal picture: “Masses of vivid flowers against the borders of green trees and foliage were an effective background for pretty light colored summer frocks worn by the women”.

That evening at The Ranchmen’s Club, Sir James, a member of the federal cabinet, sat on the prince’s immediate right at the dinner which began at Calgary’s most prestigious social club at 8 p.m. (Only men could belong as women were excluded as full members until 1993.)

The senator proposed the toast to the King, to which the prince responded. What the royal visitor and Calgary’s only knight discussed at the head table remains unknown. Calgary, a city of about 60,000, had just been shaken by labour unrest. In the late spring, Calgary experienced the third-largest labour stoppage ever in Western Canada, a month-long sympathy strike in support of the Winnipeg General Strike. High unemployment and postwar inflation, low wages and working conditions had all contributed to the outbreak in Winnipeg of the largest labour strike in Canadian history.

Instead of reviewing the condition of Western Canada’s working class, the prince and the senator more likely discussed contemporary British and Imperial issues. One name probably popped up, that of the only person they both knew who belonged to both the British House of Commons and The Ranchmen’s Club: William Dudley Ward.

Welcome to the Empire Hotel

Residing at the Gateway to Upper West Side, The Empire Hotel reflects the earthy tones and modernism of our illustrious nearby neighbors, Central Park and Lincoln Center. Step past our Art Deco façade to find yourself greeted by bold, eclectic interiors with the vibe of a retro, bohemian NYC lounge from the 1960s. Checking in, you are warmly welcomed by the friendly & professional Empire Hotel Team whose attentive, personalized hospitality makes us feel more like a home away from home than hotel.

Whether business or leisure brings you to NYC, we go beyond merely providing a place to stay and deliver the Manhattan experience, and great hotel deals you&rsquore looking for. With subway stations steps away from our door and the World&rsquos Stage of Performing Arts next door at Lincoln Center (The Metropolitan Opera, Lincoln Center Theater, New York City Ballet, Jazz at Lincoln Center, Film at Lincoln Center) this is your key to the city.

As a retreat from the New York City bustle and energy, our hotel immerses you in relaxing ambiance and comfort after a day of travel, meetings or exploration. Each guestroom is an inviting yet sophisticated space with geometrically patterned carpeting and wall coverings complemented by deluxe bedding and bathroom amenities.

For a nightcap, join us in our decadent Lobby Bar, a sepia-toned gem that draws a cosmopolitan mix of neighbors and hotel guests. Or take in glimpses of the Upper West Side skyline and Central Park with alfresco cocktails at our 12th floor Empire Rooftop Bar & Lounge, a poolside lounge in the shadow of our iconic, nostalgic Empire Hotel sign.

Welcome to your NYC pied-a-terre, combining big city energy with a warm touch to ensure a top-notch experience for any visit.


Longway Tavern
Remember when Sylvain shook things up in the French Quarter? The team behind that winning entry has yet another hit on its hands, once again in the Quarter John Sinclair is one of those very talented chefs nearly hiding in plain sight, and his thoroughly modern pub menu turns what could have been just another great bar (with smart cocktails from Liam Deegan) into a destination for lunch and dinner. Go for the radishes and butter starter, the fried squash, for home fries studded with pork belly, an exemplary steak sandwich served with charred green onion, horseradish and roasted mushrooms, fried calamari in agrodolce and a chocolate dessert that feels like a smartly reconfigured s’more. You won’t feel like you’re half a block from Bourbon Street, but that’s just how things are now, around here.

Molly’s Rise and Shine
E.T. keeps watch over the cheerful dining room at Mason Hereford’s breakfast-y follow-up to his smash-hit Turkey and the Wolf this very fun place to start your day is breathing new life into a nearly century-old Magazine Street po-boy shop with a very modern, nearly West Coast menu of smashed peas, feta cheese, and torn herbs on toast, a labneh dip dusted with everything bagel seasoning, zaatar and olive oil, or an exuberant roasted carrot yogurt with granola. Southern breakfast fans, fear not—New Orleans-style collards served with impeccable, creamy grits, perfect poached eggs, and a smoky salsa macha could easily be the morning meal of the moment, around here you’ll find plenty of people ordering the house take on the Egg McMuffin, and that’s fine, but don’t snooze on the build your own breakfast option—sausage, biscuits, soft scrambled eggs, and if you’re smart, full side orders of those collards and grits. (They are very good, indeed.)

The same block along an evolving St. Claude Avenue where you’ll find the crusty (and beloved) Saturn Bar might not feel like a natural fit for this casually civilized oasis, but here we are—what launched as modern, naturals-focused wine bar with snacks has evolved to become a real neighborhood bistro in the modern Parisian style, owned and operated by a dream team of younger up-and-comers. Order the fresh cheese with herbs and oil, the crudite platter, which recently included smoky stalks of roasted burdock root other recent standouts include the radishes with brown butter creme fraiche, fried snapper with celeriac and a sunchoke butter milk, and grilled, koji-aged hanger steaks with frites and escargot persillade.

Elysian Bar
There are hotel restaurants that insist they are so much more than hotel restaurants, even if they really are not, and goodness knows New Orleans has seen plenty of these, lately this suite of sumptuously designed rooms at the new Hotel Peter & Paul in the Marigny𠅊n ambitious renovation project from Nathalie Jordi (married to local food critic Brett Anderson) in partnership with New York firm ASH NYC—is so much more than a pretty face, however, thanks to the presence of Alex Harrell and Martha Wiggins, a culinary dream team working together with the crew behind the Bywater’s beloved Bacchanal. Come for a drink in the well-hidden bar, or warming, earthy food, served from morning until late night. Evidence fermented cabbage and guanciale with butterbeans, bottarga bread crumbs and grainy mustard, or dappled heirloom grits topped with soft poached eggs, tomato braised mushrooms and the crunch of fried shallots.

A sprawling co-working and banquet space might seem an unlikely destination in a city crawling with new restaurants, but there’s something so charming (maybe it’s the rooftop deck?) about this Bywater find, with its all-day cafe menu of quirky breakfasts, sandwiches, and probiotic cocktails. Happy hours are terrific, and so are the sunsets from up top. In a city known for charming and intimate, there’s so much room to breathe here, and it feels grand.


Agatha fulfilled a lifelong dream when she first took this train to Istanbul on her way to Baghdad in 1928. On that visit she stayed in Hotel Tokatlian, which was demolished in the Fifties and was where Hercule Poirot dined before catching the train.

But she also stayed at the Pera Palace and, in deference to her, the restaurant, with its fusion of European-Turkish cuisine under ebullient chef Max Thomae, is named Agatha. For many years the hotel was described as having 'faded grandeur', but there's nothing faded about it now - nearly £20 million was spent on the renovation.

The painstaking task involved 15 stonemasons working for 18 months to chip off the green paint that covered the facade, revealing the mellow stone beneath.

'Museum-hotel': The Pera Palace honours its famous guests from Agatha Christie to Ernest Hemingway

Antique furniture - like the mother-of-pearl inlaid bookcases - was also restored a spa and a small indoor swimming pool (12 breaststrokes long) added downstairs and the 'historical elevator' - the oldest in Turkey - returned to working condition.

As this delightful construction of cast-iron and wood panelling - with red velvet bench and mirrors - ascends, it gives a perfect view of the hotel's kubbeli (domes), wrought-iron balconies, and new glass roof which brings sunlight streaming in.

From our room on the sixth floor, we could look across the constant water-borne activity of the Golden Horn - the city's natural harbour - to the mosque-punctuated jumble of the Old City.

Our floor used to be attic quarters for servants, but the rooms have been remodelled and are now larger and rather more luxurious, with heated marble in the bathrooms, gold monogrammed pillows and hand-woven carpets.

In Agatha's day, travellers would have been conveyed across the Golden Horn by the Galata Bridge. There have been many versions since - the current one was built in 1994 - and seeing the bridge is considered one of Istanbul's essential experiences.

Restored: The Pera Palace cost £20m to renovate

It has a lower tier housing a series of restaurants, each vying to provide the most deafening entertainment by song, guitar or piano. We found one with more discreet music and ate fried anchovies while gazing at the New Mosque (actually 400 years old), with its crescent moon fittingly positioned above one slender minaret.

On the bridge's top tier, fishermen crowded together, dangling their lines into the waters. September marks the start of the fishing season here and on one side of the bridge is the market, its baskets of fish continually sluiced with water, while on the other is a crowd of locals who press forward, eager for fish sandwiches - fillets cooked on long grills aboard swaying quayside boats and slapped into half-loaves.

This experience is considered nearly as important as a trip on the Bosphorus past the yali - old wooden (and expensive) summer homes - or a visit to Topkapi Palace, with its plane-shaded courtyards and Sultan's harem rooms.

Another sight that should not be missed is Sirkeci station, close to the walls of Topkapi Palace. A featureless boxy frontage is now the main entrance, but round the corner, past the steam engine on display, is the much grander ticket hall with its fluted classical columns, Moorish curved windows and a stained-glass rose window that would not be out of place in a church.

The Orient Express Restaurant next door has photographs from films and of Agatha at different ages.

Back at the Pera Palace, it was time to dress for dinner. Under a blaze of Murano glass chandeliers in the ballroom, there were speeches from Mathew and from John Curran, whose book, Agatha Christie's Secret Notebooks, has been newly translated into Turkish.

As John returned to his table, a man jumped from his seat and, clutching his throat, fell to the ground. It was only as another guest leapt into noisy action that light dawned: this was a murder mystery, and the slim woman in red evening dress, sunglasses and blonde wig was playing a young Miss Marple. I think Agatha might have enjoyed that .

Meet Prince Charming for Brunch at The New York Palace Hotel - Recipes

Tchoupitoulas Room

The Tchoupitoulas Room is located along the street of the same name with views of the historic area through the original wood sash windows. This room accommodates up to 50 guests for seated meals and up to 65 guests for receptions.

Higgins Room

The Higgins Room is Calcasieu's largest room boasting an open floor plan with access to the main bar. This space is ideal for formal seated meals as well as cocktail reception for up to 100 guests.

Tchoupitoulas + Higgins Room

The Higgins Room and Tchoupitoulas Room combined offer an extensive dining area to accommodates up to 150 guests for a seated meal and up to 200 guests for receptions. This space also allows for combining cocktail receptions with sit-down dinner, or business presentations followed by formal meals.

Wine Room

The Wine Room offers the most private dining experience, accented with hand-crafted, cherry wood furnishing by a local artist and carpenter. The space accommodates up to 20 people for a seated meal or up to 25 for a small cocktail reception.


The Mezzanine at Cochon restaurant accommodates semi-private gatherings. The lofted space offers room for up to 30 guests for a seated dinner and accommodates up to 40 guests for a reception.




Winner of the 2011 James Beard Foundation “Best Chef South,” Stephen Stryjewski is Chef/Partner of New Orleans’ award winning restaurants Cochon, Cochon Butcher, Pêche Seafood Grill, Calcasieu, a private event facility, La Boulangerie, a neighborhood bakery and café, as well as Gianna, Link Restaurant Group's latest addition to the family. Stephen has been honored as “Best New Chef” by New Orleans Magazine, and as a “Chef to Watch” by The Times-Picayune. In 2007 Cochon was named a “Best New Restaurant” finalist by the James Beard Foundation, and in 2014, Pêche Seafood Grill won the James Beard Foundation award in the same category. Cochon has been recognized in the New York Times by Frank Bruni, “Coast to Coast, Restaurants that Count” and Sam Sifton, “Dishes that Earned their Stars,” and has been consistently listed as a Top Ten New Orleans Restaurant in The Times-Picayune Dining Guide and was recently named one of the 20 most important restaurants in America by Bon Appétit.

In 2015, Stryjewski and his business partner Chef Donald Link created the Link Stryjewski Foundation to address the persistent cycle of violence and poverty, as well as the lack of quality education and job training opportunities available to young people in New Orleans. http://www.linkstryjewski.org

In 1997, Stryjewski graduated from the Culinary Institute of America and went on to work for some of the most notable chefs and restaurants in America including Michael Chiarello at TraVigne, Jamie Shannon at Commanders Palace, and Jeff Buben at Vidalia. Stryjewski grew up moving frequently as an “Army brat” and has traveled extensively in the United States and Europe. He resides in New Orleans’ Irish Channel with his wife and two daughters.



Inspired by the Cajun and Southern cooking of his grandparents, Louisiana native Chef Donald Link began his professional cooking career at 15 years old. Recognized as one of New Orleans’ preeminent chefs, Chef Link has peppered the streets of the Warehouse District of New Orleans with several restaurants over the course of the past fifteen years. Herbsaint, a contemporary take on the French-American “bistro” was Link’s first restaurant. Cochon, opened with chef-partner Stephen Stryjewski, is where Link offers true Cajun and Southern cooking featuring the foods and cooking techniques he grew up preparing and eating. Cochon Butcher is a tribute to Old World butcher and charcuterie shops which also serves a bar menu, sandwiches, wine and creative cocktails. Calcasieu is Chef Link’s private event facility that takes its name from one of the parishes in the Acadiana region of southwest Louisiana. Pêche Seafood Grill serves simply prepared coastal seafood with a unique, modern approach to old world cooking methods featuring rustic dishes prepared on an open hearth over hardwood coals. Enjoy handcrafted pastries and breads at La Boulangerie Link’s neighborhood bakery and café. The latest addition to the family is Gianna, an Italian restaurant joining the group in April 2019.

Link’s flagship restaurant Herbsaint earned him a James Beard award in 2007 for Best Chef South. The same year Cochon was nominated for Best New Restaurant Link was also nominated by the James Beard Foundation for the prestigious award of Outstanding Chef for multiple years. Pêche Seafood Grill was awarded Best New Restaurant at the 2014 James Beard Foundation Awards. Gourmet Magazine listed Herbsaint as one of the top 50 restaurants in America, and was inducted into the Nations Restaurant News Hall of Fame. Cochon was listed in The New York Times as "one of the top 3 restaurants that count” and recently named one of the 20 most important restaurants in America by Bon Appétit. For his commitment to the industry, the Louisiana Restaurant Association honored Link by naming him Restaurateur of the Year in 2012.
The James Beard Foundation also honored Link’s first cookbook-- Real Cajun: Rustic Home Cooking from Donald Link’s Louisiana (Clarkson Potter) with their top award for Best American Cookbook. Released in 2009. Real Cajun is a collection of family recipes that Link has honed and perfected while honoring the authenticity of the Cajun people. In February 2014, Link celebrated the release of his second cookbook "Down South: Bourbon, Pork, Gulf Shrimp & Second Helpings of Everything," (Clarkson-Potter), which looks beyond New Orleans and Louisiana at dishes in nearby states.
In 2015, Chefs Link and Stryjewski created the Link Stryjewski Foundation to address the persistent cycle of violence and poverty, as well as the lack of quality education and job training opportunities available to young people in New Orleans. http://www.linkstryjewski.org

Bret Macris

Bret Macris grew up in Burbank, California and started cooking at the legendary Campanile Restaurant straight out of college. Under the guidance and mentorship of Mark Peel and Nancy Silverton, Bret attended Le Cordon Bleu in Pasadena while still working full time at Campanile. He spent seven years there, with four as Chef de Cuisine, before moving to the Happy Gnome brew pub in St. Paul, Minnesota where he was a Tournant/Consultant. In 2009, Bret became the Executive Chef at Rosewater Restaurant in Brooklyn and in 2015 he opened Syndicated Bar Theater Kitchen in New York. Bret joined the Link Restaurant Group in January 2016 as Sous-Chef at Butcher and was promoted to Chef de Cuisine in 2018. Beginning of 2019 Macris became Cochon's Chef de Cuisine.


Matthew Ghabrial began his tenure in the service industry as a teenager, working in a New Jersey pizzeria. In 2003, he moved to New Orleans to attend Loyola University, where he graduated with a degree in Latin American Studies. Matthew worked in several restaurants and bars in New Orleans until joining up with Cochon in 2006, originally as a server and later a bartender. In the spring of 2013, Matthew left Cochon to help set up and run the bar at Link Restaurant Group’s Peche Seafood Grill. Shortly thereafter, he took the helm at Cochon Butcher as General Manager. In late 2018 Matthew returned to Cochon, accepting the position of General Manager at the Link Group restaurant he started out in.



Originally from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Maggie Scales pursued her Undergraduate degree at the University of California, San Diego, majoring in Language Studies. After graduating, she relocated to Boston, Massachusetts to attend the Cambridge School of Culinary Arts in the Professional Pastry Program, under Pastry Chef Delphin Gomes. While in school, she worked at Chef Bob Kinkaid’s Sibling Rivalry Restaurant and the Metropolitan Club under Chef Todd Weiner. After culinary school, Maggie worked as a Pastry Chef at Smith & Wollensky Steakhouse in Boston. In 2009, she received the opportunity to work with James Beard winner Lydia Shire at Scampo Restaurant at the Liberty Hotel. When Chef Shire opened Towne Stove + Spirits in 2010, Maggie, became the executive Pastry Chef of the 300-seat establishment. In June 2011, Maggie relocated to New Orleans and began working for the Omni Hotels in July. In 2013, Maggie joined Link Restaurant Group as a Pastry Chef. In summer 2014 Maggie accepted the position as Executive Pastry Chef overseeing all aspects of Link Restaurant Group’s pastry department. In 2015 Scales became Chef/Partner at La Boulangerie, a French bakery on Magazine Street in New Orleans.

Bottomless brunches in London

Bad Egg

Price : £35 per person (unlimited Bloody Marys, prosecco or Mimosas), two dishes whole table only two-hour time limit. Saturday 10am to 7.30pm and Sunday, 12pm to 5.30pm.

You followed your hangover here. So thankfully this part of the City-to-Shoreditch pass is a ghost town at the weekend &ndash and all the gentler for it. Meanwhile American-style diner Bad Egg is hopping &ndash but don&rsquot recoil, everyone&rsquos in the same morning-after boat. Sit back and enjoy unlimited hair of the dog, including a spicy gochujang bloody mary that&rsquoll slap you straight. You can choose from two plates from a crazy-ass fusion menu (plus your choice of soul-reviving pancakes or French toast), so go with a group and order strategically.

Bourne & Hollingsworth Buildings

Bourne & Hollingsworth does bottomless brunch in its purest form. The venue? A light-drenched conservatory filled with ferns and palms. The menu? Two courses of simple breakfast food &ndash smoothie bowls, pancakes, avo on toast, hash browns &ndash alongside as many Bellinis and Bloody Marys as you can handle, plus hot drinks. It&rsquos a formula that&rsquos been copied across the city, but these lads do it properly

Daddy Bao

Price : £18 per person for one hour of speciality cocktails. All food items priced individually. Saturday and Sunday, 11am to 4pm.

A welcome spin-off of Mr Bao in Peckham, Daddy Bao is Tooting&rsquos answer to reliably good Taiwanese cuisine. Go for the much-lauded fluffy steamed milk bao of course, but don&rsquot miss the small plates and rolled spring onion pancakes (with slow cooked beef or mushrooms) while you&rsquore there. The atmosphere oozes contemporary Asian: trad red lanterns hover above and hand-drawn Mandarin characters adorn the walls. It&rsquos distinctly moody and buzzy (but fun) &ndash pull up a pew and watch your food being made in the kitchen while you wait.

Darcie and May Green

Price : £39.50 per person for two dishes plus unlimited prosecco and Mimosas). Whole table only. Monday to Saturday, 10am to 3.30pm Sunday, noon to 3.30pm. Ninety-minute time limit.

Darcie and May Green aren&rsquot two old toffs, but a pair of floating barges moored up on the Grand Union Canal outside Paddington station &ndash complete with artwork from Brit Art godfather Sir Peter Blake. Head to Darcie for its Aussie-style bottomless brunch, which brings you unlimited prosecco and Mimosas plus two dishes &ndash one savoury, one sweet. Try the &lsquoFancy bacon roll&rsquo (poached eggs, crispy onions, bacon, holy f*ck hollandaise, paratha roti) or the award-winning banana bread sandwich slathered with mascarpone. Craving a hearty full English? Order The Bondi. The same menu is offered at Darcie and May Green&rsquos sister restaurants, including Ziggy Green off Regent Street and Timmy Green in Victoria.

Double Standard

Price: £20 for unlimited Blood Marys and prosecco. Food priced separately. Sunday 12pm to 5pm.

When the original, ultra-sleek Standard hotel opened in LA, it was a place for hyped bands to stay and for the city&rsquos scenesters to party at super-exclusive disco nights. It&rsquos no wonder, then, that its King&rsquos Cross outpost feels very, very hip. Its restaurant Double Standard &ndash with its sleazy &rsquo70s aesthetic and dive-bar menu &ndash is a big ol&rsquo part of that. On Sundays, it hosts bottomless brunch, with unlimited Bloody Marys and a brunch burger with, er, Bloody Mary ketchup (plus American classics like banana pancakes). It&rsquos also got a very nice, sunny terrace if eating breakfast in a space that screams &lsquo4am afterparty&rsquo feels wrong.

El Pirata

Price: £37. Saturday 12pm to 3pm.

Few London restaurants channel big holiday energy like El Pirata. The luxury Mayfair spot has the vibe of a fancy joint on a Spanish city break. Bottomless brunch comes with free-flowing Sangria and beer and is more about snacking on very good small plates &ndash padron peppers, tortilla, prawns with chilli, garlic and olive oil &ndash than eating and drinking yourself into a stupor.

Venue says Lunch under £15 two tapas, bread & alioli and a soft drink, all for £13.50. available Tuesday-Fridays from the 18th May. Book now!

Flesh & Buns

Price : £39 or £59 per person (depending on the menu you choose), including unlimited red or white wine, prosecco or lager. Sunday and bank holiday Monday, noon to 4pm (last seating). Two-hour time limit, groups of six maximum.

After a heavy Saturday night, what do hardcore caners do? They carry on the party somewhere where the sun don&rsquot shine and where the rock music doesn&rsquot spare their tender eardrums. The Flesh & Buns brunch is a no-brainer for postponing and minimising your oncoming hangover, with a selection of chips, dips and edamame plus a choice of three small dishes per person (and a signature bao bun to boot) &ndash plus as much hair of the dog as you can stomach (lager, prosecco, red or white wine) to ease the pain (for now). It&rsquos not a traditional brunch menu by any stretch of the imagination, but it&rsquos all tasty ballast.


Price : £25 per person for bottomless prosecco, Mimosas and a selection of other cocktails. All food items priced individually. Tuesday to Sunday, 11.30am to 2.15pm, Sunday, 1130am to 2.20pm). Two-hour time limit.

They call it a &lsquoliquid brunch&rsquo here, which probably sets the tone nicely for a bit of a Texas hoedown. Big, meaty flavours mean this is as bombastic as bottomless brunch can get, with the likes of beef-rib taco and a pork-belly eggs benedict with spiced hollandaise on the line-up &ndash choose from a selection of cocktails, unlimited prosecco and Mimosas. Traditionalists don&rsquot have to go in heavy on the meat and can complement their unlimited booze with huevos rancheros or the classic hipster combo of crushed avocado with feta and a poached egg on sourdough. There&rsquos even a twist on a classic cheese toastie made with truffle, fontina cheese and asparagus. Fancy!

Venue says Delivery and Call & Collect available! Find us on Deliveroo, Just Eat and UberEats. We also now have at-home meal kit available!

Lantana Shoreditch

Price : £30 per person with bottomless prosecco, Mimosas and coffee with any brunch item. £25 with unlimited juices and coffee. Saturday and Sunday, 9am to 4pm. Ninety-minute time limit.

Rise and shine in Shoreditch with a menu of Aussie-leaning brunch treats &ndash from shredded confit duck with roasted sweet potato, edamame and a peanut sesame seed chilli crunch to corn fritters and smashed avocado every which way. Speaking of smashed, guests can choose from bottomless Mimosas for classic brunch vibes or go classy with prosecco a-flowing. Lantana is sympathetic to the teetotallers too, offering coffee and juices on tap. And with its Aussie roots, you know the coffee will be bonzer.

Mr Bao

Price: £18 for bottomless cocktails. All dishes priced individually. Saturday and Sunday, 11am to 5pm. One-hour time limit.

Toast devotees, shield your eyes &ndash the menu at this Peckham restaurant offers Taiwanese takes on brunch classics with the traditional bready carbs replaced by Mr Bao&rsquos soft &rsquon&rsquo springy milk-white steamed buns. The bao benedict is the pick of the bunch, topped with the same slow-braised pork that stars in the restaurant&rsquos signature bao. The veggie version with teriyaki shiitake mushrooms is a stunning option, too. Whatever you choose, at least one punchier-than-average bloody mary is non-negotiable. With sparkling saké, wasabi and sriracha getting in on the party, it&rsquos a slap in the face of trad brunching, in a very, very good way.


Price : £25 per person for food, £20 extra for unlimited prosecco. Saturday and Sunday, 11am to 4pm. Two-hour time limit.

Inject some colour into your mid-morning feasting, with the prettiest Peruvian plates paired with bottomless prosecco. That booze also goes well with sharing plates of sea bream tiradito, fried aubergine with smoked yoghurt or Pachamama&rsquos signature brunch waffles &ndash the sweet version topped with peanut butter, grilled plantain, coconut and Peruvian chocolate is a must-try. If you&rsquore missing the famous full English, order up the bacon, egg and yacon syrup waffle while you jam to bachata beats.


Price : Q brunch (£25 extra per person for unlimited prosecco for the duration of your meal when eating two or more courses), Saturday, 11.30am to 2.30pm. Q lunch (£23 per person for bottomless bubbles or £20 per person for bottomless white or rosé wine for the duration of your meal when eating two or more courses), Sunday 11.30am to 2.30pm. Parties of 13 or more must have three courses.

Fashion fades, but class lasts, and swanky Quag&rsquos just keeps on rolling along &ndash always ready for the latest celebrity bash or dressed-up party. It&rsquos also worth putting on your glad rags for the &lsquoQ brunch&rsquo &ndash a fancy socialising affair fuelled by bottomless bubbles (of course) and live music. You can eat handsomely from a roster that runs from native lobster thermidor to roast loch duarte salmon, a flashy croque monsieur or wild mushroom linguine with herby truffle and aged parmesan. Ready for pud? Try the mandarin and pistachio baked Alaska. There are buttermilk pancakes plus eggs every which way too &ndash if that&rsquos more to your liking.

Restaurant at Sea Containers London

Price : £19 per person for bottomless prosecco, Rossinis, Mimosas or Grey Goose Bloody Marys, or bottomless Laurent-Perrier Brut for £59. All brunch items priced individually. Saturday, Sunday and bank holidays, noon to 4pm (last seating). Ninety-minute time limit.

The perfect brunch-time distraction for culture vultures who have bookmarked a weekend meet-up with friends and a visit to Tate Modern or the South Bank, Sea Containers&rsquo waterside dining room offers a sharing deal in maritime-themed, trompe l&rsquooeil surrounds. The menu goes on a transatlantic cruise, stopping off for buttermilk fried chicken with waffles and blue cheese or a poshed-up mac &rsquon&rsquo cheese with braised beef and garlic crumbs &ndash with the odd detour for heritage tomato and ricotta flatbread and a crowd-pleasing aged cheddar cheeseburger. Check in at the Grey Goose Bloody Mary station to juice your own tomatoes and add garnishes from the market cart.

Venue says Enjoy weekend bottomless brunch, lunch or dinner with stunning views across the river Thames as your backdrop. Our outdoor terrasse is open!

Roka Aldwych

Price : £59 per person for ten sharing plates, a main course, dessert and unlimited red, white and rose wine throughout your meal plus a bellini on arrival. Saturday, 11.30am to 3.30pm, Sunday and bank holidays, 11.30am to 8pm.

The weekend brunch menu at Roka Aldwych goes under the title of &lsquohan setto&rsquo, which is Japanese for &lsquogently wasted&rsquo. Just kidding (it means &lsquoset menu&rsquo) although the procession of ten sharing plates, plus a main and a sumptuous dessert platter, does come with the option of unlimited prosecco, red or white wine throughout the meal &ndash and you&rsquoll be pleased to hear that staff don&rsquot hold back with top-ups. Move from dumplings, sashimi, tempura and the like to hearty grilled meats and veg from the robata. The dessert platter&rsquos sugar rush will lift you from any post-wine slump.

Smiths of Smithfield Farringdon

Price: £60 per person for bottomless prosecco, Mimosas or Bloody Marys, a Little Bird Gin welcome cocktail and a three-plate meal, or £85 for the above plus champagne instead of prosecco plus caviar and cream cheese blinis. Saturday, noon to 8pm. Two-hour time limit.

Sure, breakfast might be the most important meal of the day, but brunch is obviously the most fun. If you&rsquore in the game for top-notch cuts of quality meat and sausages, Smiths is right down your alley. Go all out for its all-day breakfast, baked eggs with suffolk chorizo and wood-fired peppers, or try the Severn & Wye smoked salmon with scrambled eggs and crème fraiche on toast. There&rsquos also a pretty decent vegan option, too.

Temper Covent Garden

Price: £39.50 for bottomless wine, beer or cocktails and a barbecue brucnh platter. Saturday noon to 3.30pm.

Temper&rsquos held a solid top-ten spot on our Best Restaurants list since it opened in 2016. One of a wave of chic barbecue joints that have set up in London over the past few years, it&rsquos a sort-of industrial, sort-of retro space where tough-nut chefs chuck huge hunks of meat on to charcoal fires in a central open kitchen. At the weekend you can sit back and watch the show with unlimited cocktails and a platter of Asian- and Latin-spiced flesh. Think: impossibly juicy pork and full-flavoured, smoked and &lsquoblow-torched&rsquo mackerel, tucked into tacos and flatbreads.

Dine at National Harbor

National Harbor’s roster of more than 40 restaurants gives everyone something that satisfies.

Looks like there's nothing here, please try clearing the filters or search and try again.

Choose An Area

Filter By Type

AC Lounge

Featuring innovative cocktails, wine on tap and a wide selection of beer and Spanish wine, the AC Lounge is the perfect location to kick start your night out. Enjoy waterfront views and the region’s most spectacular sunsets from wrap-around outdoor terrace.

Auntie Anne’s Pretzel Perfect / Planet Smoothie

Auntie Anne's features 11 varieties of hot, fresh pretzel products in sweet and zesty flavors. It's only natural to want to try one! There's nothing to lose because Auntie Anne's has a pretzel perfect guarantee. Auntie Anne's guarantees you'll love your pretzel or they will replace it with one that you do. Also enjoy smoothies made from fresh fruit, juices.

Bar Harbor

Bar Harbor is a comfortable refuge with a fun menu loaded with familiar flavors. Enjoy hand-crafted cocktails, a featured local micro-brew, or a meticulously planned wine offering. Oh, and the view is priceless.

Bellagio Patisserie at MGM National Harbor

Enjoy French-inspired breakfast, chocolates, cookies, cakes, sandwiches and more, inside of MGM National Harbor's beautiful conservatory.

Belvedere Lobby Bar

After meetings, and before a night on the town, be sure to visit our lobby bar. Sip on signature cocktails as you gaze at our lush atrium and watch the sunset over the Potomac River. We also offer various draft beers, champagne, wine and light meals.

Ben & Jerry’s

Iconic Vermont-based ice cream parlor chain, known for its creative, cleverly named flavors.

Bobby McKey’s Dueling Piano Bar

Leave your inhibitions and worries at the door and get ready to party, sing, dance and laugh the night away. Bobby McKey’s Dueling Piano Bar combines live music, comedy, and audience interaction into a non-stop, high-energy show, unlike anything you’ve ever experienced. Buy your show tickets today and join the party you’ll never forget!

Bond 45

  • Italian
  • Brunch
  • Dessert
  • Dinner
  • Full-service patio available
  • Seafood
  • To Go

A New York staple traveled from the city that never sleeps to the spectacular National Harbor dining scene! Bond 45 is a modern-day classic Italian, Steak and Seafood restaurant open for weekday dinner, all-day dining on the weekends as well happy hour and Sunday brunch specials. This stylish restaurant serves delicious food in a vibrant atmosphere with beautiful interiors. Join us.

Brother Jimmy’s

  • Dessert
  • Dinner
  • Full-service patio available
  • Lunch
  • Southern
  • To Go

Brother Jimmy’s has celebrated over 25 years of legendary North Carolina, slow-smokin’ barbeque. As suggested by the restaurant’s slogan – “Put Some South in Yo’ Mouth” - Brother Jimmy’s mission was, and still is, to bring “down-home” cooking, hospitality and merriment to the heart of the Northeast.

BurgerFi National Harbor–COMING SOON

Enjoy our chef-inspired selections in our eco-friendly environment and experience how we redefine the way the world eats burgers.

Cadillac Ranch All American Bar and Grill

  • American
  • Area
  • Bars
  • Dessert
  • Dinner
  • Lunch
  • To Go

Discover the experience at Cadillac Ranch. We feature made-from-scratch menu items with a wide variety of steaks, burgers, seafood, pasta and salads. Our restaurant boasts two levels, three bars, a wide selection of beer and handcrafted cocktail options and home to our mechanical bull, Moby. We will leave you with a memorable dining experience that will keep you coming back.

Chipotle Mexican Grill

Fast-casual Mexican restaurant all about preparing food without added colors, flavors, or preservatives. Just genuine raw ingredients and their individual, delectable flavors. We source from farms rather than factories, and invest in our ingredients. We wouldn't have it any other way.

Crab Cake Cafe

Family owned and operated, and with nearly 40 years experience with a full service seafood restaurant, Crab Cake Cafe was developed as a quick service alternative to get your Chesapeake Bay inspired seafood needs met! Using only fresh, hand-picked, all jumbo lump crab meat, Crab Cake Cafe’s crab cakes are made with absolutely no filler. Crab Cake Cafe’s soups are.

Elevation Burger

Our vision is to be more than just a burger restaurant. It’s a vision for offering authentic and sustainably prepared food that’s better for you and the environment. From fresh and flavorful food made of the highest quality ingredients to friendly and inviting restaurants built with sustainable materials, we strive to deliver an elevated experience that is OUTSIDE THE HERD.

Fiorella Italian Kitchen

  • Italian
  • Bars
  • Dessert
  • Dinner
  • Full-service patio available
  • To Go

Fiorella Italian Kitchen and Pizzeria is the National Harbor's go-to destination for casual Italian dining. Our charming atmosphere allows guests to experience a full-service pizzeria in chic- comfort. With our pizzas, pastas, and other Italian specialties, Fiorella has something for everyone! Fiorella offers stunning views of the Potomac River, Capital Wheel, Jumbotron, and Woodrow Wilson Bridge.

Flight Deck

This outdoor lounge at the foot of the Capital Wheel is perfect for celebrations, group outings, special events and drinks with friends. With a 145 person capacity, there’s room for gatherings of every kind.

Ginger at MGM National Harbor

Immerse yourself in a culinary tour of Asia with authentic Chinese, Thai, Vietnamese, Korean and Japanese dishes amid an extensive menu. Enjoy signature dishes including Vietnamese Spring Rolls, Soft Shell Crab Fried Rice, and House-Style Live Lobster along with an extensive Dim Sum menu.

Grace’s Mandarin

  • Asian
  • Dessert
  • Dinner
  • Full-service patio available
  • Lunch
  • Sushi
  • To Go

Grace’s Mandarin presents a fusion of modern Asian inspired dishes with a flair in a casual and elegant ambiance. Come and enjoy our fresh and impressive selection of sushi, paired with one our Sake selections. Our intimate lounge features stylish cocktails along with an extensive wine & champagne list. Grace's Mandarin features spectacular views of the Potomac River, in the.

Harbor Marketplace

  • American
  • Breakfast
  • Dessert
  • Dinner
  • Lunch
  • Temporarily Closed

Located in Gaylord National’s Garden Atrium, experience chef favorites crafted from local ingredients. This grab and go restaurant has fresh options available all day.

Irish Whisper

Temporarily Closed: National Harbor's Irish Pub & Restaurant featuring traditional cuisine, nearly 80 different Irish whiskies, scotches and bourbons, and a full beer & wine menu. Relax in our cozy bar setting and enjoy two fingers of your favorite whiskey by the stone fireplace. The Irish Whisper is the perfect location in National Harbor for a casual happy hour, savory.

Johnny Rockets

Johnny Rockets, the restaurant for all-American food and fun specializes in classic hamburgers, fries and shakes with over 300 restaurants worldwide. Opened in 1986, Johnny Rockets was created with the goal of serving American classics in an exciting atmosphere that invites great times and delivers equally great food.

Mason’s Famous Lobster Rolls

Authentic Maine lobster rolls and other New England fare in a fast casual setting. Fresh, mouthwatering lobster simply prepared in several different styles. Located right on the waterfront, Mason's is an ideal location to enjoy a genuine treat straight from the waters of Maine!

McCormick & Schmick’s

  • Style
  • American
  • Bars
  • Dessert
  • Dinner
  • Full-service patio available
  • Lunch
  • Seafood
  • To Go
  • Type

Featuring seasonal seafood, tender steaks and signature oysters, our commitment to freshness is reflected in our daily changing menu. From our sustainably raised Open Blue Cobia to our Hawaiian Seafood overnighted from the Honolulu Fish Auction, our menu incorporates regional tastes, farm fresh products, and local and sustainably sourced ingredients. Whether looking for an after work spot to unwind, hang.


Since 1955, we’ve been proud to serve the world some of its favorite food. And along the way, we’ve managed not just to live history, but create it: from drive-thru restaurants to Chicken McNuggets to college credits from Hamburger U and much more. It’s been quite the journey, and we promise this is just the beginning – we’ve got our.

Mezeh mediterranean grill

mezeh mediterranean grill is Fresh, Bold, and Natural. Our food is made in-house, in small batches throughout the day, to achieve freshness you can taste! Using recipes from all over the Mediterranean helps to set mezeh apart, as we are sure to have something everyone can enjoy! Chef recommendation for first time guests is to try our Bowl with White.

Nando’s PERi-PERi

Nando’s Peri-Peri is the home of Portuguese flame-grilled Peri-Peri Chicken. Our Chickens are: -Only the freshest, and never frozen -Marinated for 24 hours in our natural Peri-Peri sauce -Grilled to order over an open flame to reduce fat content -Basted to your taste to control the spiciness and served as you want it It’s thanks to our Portuguese forefathers –.

National Market at MGM National Harbor

The epicenter of culinary exploration at MGM National Harbor, National Market has a taste for everyone.

National Pastime Sports Bar & Grill

Revolutionize your game-watching experience with our 36-foot video wall. Cheer for your team and order a few rounds of drinks at our bar which features a variety of craft beer on tap. We also serve an array of comfort foods. Bring your friends along and enjoy our lively sports-themed atmosphere.

Old Hickory Steakhouse

Treat yourself to an unforgettable experience at Old Hickory Steakhouse. Savor our decadent premium beef, artisanal cheeses and handcrafted cocktails. After dining in our elegant restaurant, visit our outdoor terrace for unrivaled views and enjoy a cigar with an after dinner drink.

Osteria Costa at MGM National Harbor

  • Italian
  • Brunch
  • Dessert
  • Dinner
  • European
  • Mediterranean
  • Temporarily Closed

Osteria Costa at MGM National Harbor is a casual reprieve where guests will enjoy a variety of wood-fired pizzas, handmade pastas, fresh seafood and Italian spirits. Each day, a fresh assortment of limoncello will be crafted in-house available to be poured neat, or as part of a refreshing cocktail. The wine program will reflect the southern coast of Italy and.

Panda Tea House

Panda Tea House is a trendy store that serves delicious boba tea, amazing Thai Rolled Ice cream, and famous Hong Kong bubble waffle.

Pienza Marketplace

Enjoy fresh and ever-changing dining at Pienza Marketplace. We proudly partner with local-area farms to include seasonal ingredients in our breakfast buffet. Come and enjoy our healthy options to power up for your productive day in National Harbor.

Pose Rooftop Lounge

Take in panoramic views of the Capital Region at National Harbor's only rooftop lounge. Located on the 18th and 19th floors, this lounge features a wrap-around terrace, a selection of hand-crafted cocktails, and a VIP area. Relax, socialize, and dance the night away. Open only to registered hotel guests. All guests must be 21+ with a valid form of ID.


Fresh, Fast & Friendly. We don’t use these words lightly. Fresh starts every morning. Before a single sandwich is toasted or salad is crafted we're preparing fresh veggies, meats and cheese and sending a fresh batch of cookies through the oven– because we know fresh food makes you smile!

Public House

Whether it is brunch, lunch, happy hour, dinner or a late night party that you seek in National Harbor, Public House is one of the best restaurant and bar establishments across from the Gaylord Hotel and Convention Center. Public House provides full-service dining including happy hour, late night fare and Saturday & Sunday breakfast/brunch.

Redstone American Grill

  • American
  • Brunch
  • Dessert
  • Dinner
  • Full-service patio available
  • Lunch
  • To Go

The rugged, yet romantic atmosphere is perfect for any occasion: an intimate dinner, a business lunch, drinks outside on the patio, or Sunday brunch. Redstone American Grill features a wood-burning rotisserie and open flame grill where signature chicken, seasonal fish, and perfectly aged steaks are prepared. The menu also offers a selection of fresh chilled salads,homemade soups, unique appetizers and unforgettable.

Rosa Mexicano

  • Mexican
  • Area
  • Dessert
  • Dinner
  • Full-service patio available
  • Lunch
  • To Go

Rosa Mexicano is a destination born of a unique vision. In our restaurants, you’ll experience upscale dining that honors Mexican heritage, culinary techniques, and the global explorations and inspirations of our founder, Josefina Howard. Overlooking the Potomac River, with views of the Capital Wheel, Washington, D.C. and Old Town, Alexandria, Rosa Mexicano is located in the center of the National.

Sauciety Restaurant

Sauciety Restaurant is located in The Westin Washington National Harbor - American Cusine

Shake Shack

Shake Shack is a modern day "roadside" burger stand, serving up delicious burgers, chicken, hot dogs, shakes, frozen custard, beer, wine and more. Our second Maryland Shack is in the heart of MGM National Harbor. That Shack’s spinning up the MGM National Harbor-exclusive Pie Oh My frozen custard concrete: vanilla custard and slice of Livin’ The Pie Life seasonal pie.

Starbucks Coffee

Since 1971, Starbucks Coffee Company has been committed to ethically sourcing and roasting the highest quality arabica coffee on the planet.


Fresh and Healthy Sandwiches and Salads. We make it for you with the freshest ingredients just the way you want it! Check out the new Sandwiches and Monthly Specials!


  • Bars
  • Brunch
  • Dessert
  • Dinner
  • Full-service patio available
  • Lunch
  • Southern
  • To Go

A progressive perspective of classic Southern favorites. James Beard Award nominee Edward Lee brings his Korean roots and Southern repertoire to a soulful Southern menu.

TAP Sports Bar at MGM National Harbor

Come grab a signature burger and root for your favorite sports team in front of 70 flat-screen TVs. Or score with an all-star roster of local and seasonal craft beers - perfect for sipping from the best seat in the house overlooking our nation's capital and the Potomac.

Thai Pavilion

  • Asian
  • Dessert
  • Dinner
  • Full-service patio available
  • Lunch
  • To Go

At Thai Pavilion, the experience involves a lot more than elegant décor and comfortable surroundings. It begins in the kitchen where our chefs take pride in preparing each dish with the finest premium ingredients to create authentic Thai dishes that you'll enjoy sharing with your family and friends. Take a step through our door and experience the magic of traditional.

The Brass Tap

The Brass Tap is an upscale beer bar that offers 60 different craft beers on tap, over 100 bottles of great local and national craft beer brands, wine, spirits, and a unique food. It features 13 big screen televisions, featuring sports all the time. The Brass Tap is a premiere place to host a social or mixer, as we are.

The Cocoa Bean

Enjoy a freshly brewed cup of coffee at our on-site café. We proudly brew Starbucks® beverages in addition to baked goods and gourmet sandwiches. Stop by for a quick bite, perfect for on-the-go guests.

The Walrus Oyster and Ale House

In the mood for fresh-shucked oysters, craft beers or local Chesapeake Bay-inspired specialties? Then follow The Walrus … to scenic National Harbor. We serve an all-scratch menu, made with fresh seasonal ingredients for seafood lovers and landlubbers alike. Kick back in casual comfort and enjoy our extensive craft beer selection, tap wines, or an over the top punch bowl. You.


We know that sharing great food and drinks with loved ones is a key part of creating memories at Topgolf. Tapping into the region’s top culinary talent, each Topgolf venue features an accomplished Executive Chef and chef-driven menu. You’ll find a fresh twist on American classics, local specialties and brews, plus unexpected new creations. With shareable portions and fresh, high-quality.

Voltaggio Brothers Steak House at MGM National Harbor

Voltaggio Brothers Steak House by brothers and acclaimed chefs Bryan and Michael Voltaggio marks the first joint restaurant venture for the duo, known for their shared successes on Bravo's Top Chef. Dine on dishes drawing inspiration from their home state of Maryland amid nostalgic design details and contemporary furnishings that produce a feeling of coming home.

Waterfront Subway

Fresh and Healthy Sandwiches and Salads. We make it for you with the freshest ingredients just the way you want it! Check out the new Sandwiches and Monthly Specials!


Daniel Humphrey lives with his father Rufus, and sister Jenny in Brooklyn. He is tall, pale, quite neurotic, quite "intense" and enjoys drinking coffee. He is considered to be an intellectual when it comes to writing and literature, and was in fact an intern for The Strand one summer. His favorite past time is writing on his black journals. He goes to St. Jude's Preparatory School for Boys, on the Upper East Side, with Chuck Bass and Nate Archibald.

In the first part of the books, he is in love with Serena Van Der Woodsen because of a party he threw at their apartment before he went to boarding school. When Serena returned to the Upper East Side, she was ostracized by her peers, so she made friends with Dan and Jenny. Dan later realizes that he has feelings for Vanessa, so he begins a relationship with her.

They have a fight when a video of Jenny without her pants is leaked onto the internet, and she apologizes by sending his poem to The New Yorker. Dan gets published, and they make up. He gets an agent called Rusty Klien who claims he is "the next Keats." Rusty introduces Dan to Mystery Craze, a novelist. They hook up on stage at a poetry reading which Vanessa sees, effectively ending their relationship. He gets an internship at Red Letter, which he leaves once he realizes they don't want him there for his talent.

He gets back together with Vanessa after he sends her a small, pink singing toy from Japan to film, and at a party at her house, a band called The Raves make him their new front man because of his poems, which they thought were lyrics. He hooks up with one of the instrumentalist's wife, which ends his stint with them. He later meets Bree while working at The Strand [ clarification needed ] one summer while he was still dating Vanessa.

Dan explores his sexuality later in the books by starting a relationship with his Strand co-worker, Greg, by making literary salons with him, which were, in actuality, giant orgies. He breaks up with Greg, who becomes Chuck's boyfriend instead. Dan realizes that he truly loved Vanessa. He went to The Evergreen State College for bachelor studies.

Dan "Lonely Boy" Humphrey is the son of rocker Rufus Humphrey, and is the older sibling of Jenny Humphrey. His best friend is Vanessa Abrams, who is secretly in love with him. Dan and his family reside in Brooklyn. He is a writer and attends the St. Jude's School for boys. He has longed for Serena van der Woodsen since a party when they were fifteen and she was the only person who was nice to him. During the beginning of the show Dan has had somewhat of a disgust towards Serena's childhood best friend Blair Waldorf, however as the seasons progressed he develops a close friendship with her.

Season 1 Edit

His mother lives away from home, in Hudson, as an artist. He is financially strained compared to his wealthy classmates at St. Jude's.

Dan is one of the first people to see Serena back in person. He accidentally bumps into her, causing her to fall and spill the contents of her purse and leave behind her cellphone. In an attempt to see her again, he returns the phone to The New York Palace Hotel where she lives. He runs into Serena there and ends up on a date that with her so she does not have to go to the "Kiss On The Lips" party which Blair is throwing. They have a rocky first date, going to his dad's concert. The date is ended early because he gets a text from Jenny saying that she needs help at the party. Serena helps Jenny and saves her from Chuck Bass. Dan is highly embarrassed after this, as at the end of the date he only waves to her from a taxi. He and Serena end up going out again but he leaves her after Blair tells him about Serena and Nate hooking up at a party when Nate and Blair were a couple. They make up and become a constant source of attention.

At the Ivy Mixer, Blair tells the whole school and Ivy scouts that Serena is a patient at the Ostroff Centre, presumably for alcoholism. Serena then goes on stage and lies to protect the real patient at the Centre: her brother. Dan is surprised at Serena's apparent problem, especially after it seems that Serena has been making a real effort to change from her old partying ways. However, Jenny reveals that Eric is the actual patient, which then causes Dan to respect Serena for protecting her family. This event actually strengthens their relationship, instead of weakening it like Blair had intended it to do.

Behind the scenes, though, is Dan's childhood best friend Vanessa, who is clearly jealous of Serena and very much in love with Dan. Dan is oblivious to this. Despite Dan's clear preference for Serena, Serena cannot help but feel jealous of how close Dan is with Vanessa, such as when Dan tells Vanessa that his mother came home, while Serena learns this from Vanessa instead of Dan himself.

When he learns from the Gossip Girl site that Serena was seen buying pregnancy tests he freaks out knowing that the child could very well be his as they've slept together. His father sees this as well and is extremely upset that his son may be a teenage father. Dan explains he will stay with Serena no matter what she does because he loves her. He tells this to Serena who says she's not having a child. Later on, he tells her that he loves her, and she responds with, "Okay," which is not the response he was looking for. She later asks him why he loves her and he tells her a list he made of the reasons. She believes him and says she loves him as well, but she needs to help Blair. When he asks why, she says "one of the many reasons you love me."

When Georgina Sparks arrives on the Upper East Side with the intent on making Serena's life hell, she gets to know Dan behind Serena's back. Pretending to be "Sarah" and accidentally-on-purpose letting her dog run off its leash in the park, Georgina gets an excuse to talk to Dan. It is later seen that Dan and Vanessa have taken "Sarah" under their wing as they believe she is a new girl to the Upper East Side who doesn't know her way around.

Eventually, Dan breaks up with Serena, because he believes that she has slept with someone else and he is tired of her holding secrets from him. A few hours after he breaks up with Serena, he kisses Georgina, believing that she is a helpless girl who is running away from a psychotic ex-boyfriend. Soon thereafter, Dan is convinced that Georgina is lying to him by being told the truth by Serena. He and Blair manage to fool Georgina into thinking that Dan would like to meet up with her. The real purpose of the plan, though, is to get Georgina to meet with her parents and then get sent to a Christian boot camp. Dan and Serena rekindle what is left of their relationship before Dan ultimately ends it entirely. He is last seen spending some time with Vanessa during the start of the summer holidays.

Season 2 Edit

According to Gossip Girl, over the summer Dan went from "Lonely Boy to Playboy." Dan occupied himself by having continuous dates throughout the summer, with Serena still on his mind. Due to Dan's emotional complications, he is unable to complete an essay he was to submit. This ultimately results in his being fired due to his lack of commitment. Upon being fired from his summer job, he heads to the Hamptons upon realizing that he has been missing Serena. He hopes that by seeing Serena he will realize that they made the right decision, and he can move on.

He arrives in the Hamptons, at the annual White Party, to find Serena and Nate Archibald in a passionate kiss. This reveals his true feelings for Serena as he shows obvious anger towards Serena's "cheating." Serena tries to convince him that she kissed Nate so as to make Nate's girlfriend (an older, married woman) jealous. Dan goes to leave, when he is confronted by a pair of girls he had dated throughout the summer. The girls, having found out about one another's relationships with Dan, pour their drinks on Dan and leave. Having been caught out by Serena for his hypocrisy, Dan and Serena retreat into the house to talk. They decide to meet up later at the beach, where they spend the night together.

The following morning, Serena and Dan decide to halt any discussions on their relationships until they are back in the city. After some confusion between who was to take the train and who was to take the bus, they both ended traveling back to the city on the bus. This creates tension between the two, and as Serena gets up to use the bus bathroom, she trips and falls on Dan. She pulls up Dan and the two go into the bathroom to have some fun. The two decide to keep their rekindled relationship a secret until they were sure of themselves. Back in the city at Blair's "Welcome Back" party, Nate discovers the two in an embrace, revealing publicly that their relationship is "back on."

In "The Dark Night," during the citywide blackout, Dan and Serena talk about their problems while they were both trapped in an elevator. After a long talk (and a bit of arguing), they realized they keep having the same fight, and break up.

During their return to school, Serena and Dan are now friends until he meets a transfer student named Amanda Lasher. They share the same interests and have perfect chemistry. Blair attempts to keep them separate by making her one of her entourage so that Serena wouldn't have to suffer seeing them together and so she also wouldn't have to lose the competition of rebounding. Serena meets Amanda and nearly makes a fool out of herself. Blair forces Amanda to join them for lunch. Dan, thinking that Serena is trying to keep him away from Amanda gets Serena, who was reasoning with Dan why it happened, irritated when he kept implying that she was the one who forced her to lunch. Dan and Amanda's relationship goes public much to Serena's irritation. Serena then invites Dan and Amanda to go out later that night which turns into as disaster as Dan and Amanda continue to make her feel out of place. Isabel and Penelope, after witnessing Dan go out with Amanda that led to the relationship getting public, offers Serena several suitors, one in particular is a Dalton lacrosse team captain. Serena's new suitor fails to impress Dan. Dan thinks that Serena used the lacrosse team to rub it into his face. Later on, Penelope ruins Amanda's hair with a little help from Chuck. Dan runs to Amanda's aid who brushes him off saying that she no longer wants to see him. Dan gets into an argument with Serena and leaves. The next day, he is shunned because of Serena's rise to Queen Bee status.

Dan's recommendation from Noah Shapiro, a writer, leads him to find new inspiration in the form of Chuck Bass. Noah suggests he use Chuck to fuel a new story. Dan does so and loses his shoes in the process. He ends up creating the character of "Charlie Trout," a character that impresses Noah and asks him to find out what makes him tick. That night, Chuck mistakes a woman of being a prostitute and nearly gets punched until Dan defends him. The two end up in jail and Chuck confesses that he thinks his father hates him because he thinks he killed his mother at Chuck's birth. Chuck gets out a jail with some help from his lawyers and discovers Dan's reason as to why he was hanging out with him. Chuck gets angry at Dan and leaves him, saying that he lied about his mother's death and that she died in the Andes in a plane accident. Dan calls Noah Shapiro who bails him out. Dan confesses that he thinks it's wrong to exploit people for art and that he'd rather be safe. The two part ways and in bad terms.

During a visit to Yale, Dan's recommendation for Yale admission goes awry as his only recommendation came from J.L. Hall. Jeremiah Harris and Noah Shapiro likely declined to write for Dan's recommendation. The Dean of Admissions suggests that he find someone to read his work. Dan then finds out Nate used his name to get into a fling with Jordan, a co-ed girl who eventually helps Dan get his work to other literature professors. Dan is stripped of his clothes and tied to a statue by members of the Skull & Bones after Chuck fools them into thinking he is Nate. Chuck's revenge on Dan then backfires on Chuck who loses Nate as a friend after Nate finds out about what he did to Dan.

Dan and Nate begin a friendship much to Chuck's chagrin. During an invite to play soccer, Dan tries to visit Nate at his house and finds out about Nate's financial situation. Nate has been squatting in his own house that got seized amongst other property of the Archibalds. Dan invites Nate to a family dinner and tells Nate that he knows about Nate squatting in his own house. Nate leaves angry. Rufus talks to Dan and tells him that Nate needs help even if he doesn't want it, seeing as Nate has no one to turn to for help. Dan finds Serena outside Nate's house and repair their relationship. The two become friends. Dan convinces Nate, who moves in after his house got seized.

With Blair's situation with Chuck now out of hand, Serena gets Dan to help Blair and tells her that wearing him down would help her situation. Later on, he continues to help Blair by telling her that she should intercept him at home. With Blair desperate, he tells Blair that she should take a risk and say those "3 words, 8 letters" anyway. During Aaron's opening at Rufus' gallery, Vanessa confesses that Blair and Chuck used her in one of their sick games. Dan ruins Blair's opportunity to tell Chuck that she loves him and tells Serena what happened. He said that the two were bound to break up eventually and that what they did to Vanessa was sick. Serena says that Vanessa's matter is different and that Chuck and Blair do love each other. He later apologizes to Serena and get into an honest conversation. Serena confesses her feelings for Aaron and Dan gives her his blessing to date other people.

Aaron and Serena start to date each other while Dan realizes that he still has feelings for Serena. Aaron has been concerned that Serena leans emotionally more on Dan than him. He asks her to come with him to Buenos Aires for Christmas. Serena asks Dan for his opinion, and he tells her to go. At Eleanor's wedding however, Dan confronts Serena about his feelings for her. Because she knows about her mother and Rufus' relationship, and because she has already said yes to Aaron, Serena turns Dan down and goes ahead with Aaron's trip. Serena breaks up with Aaron during the holiday and Dan and Serena meet with each other and they both decide there are better off back together. Dan soon learns he shares a sibling brother with Serena and becomes ridden with guilt when Rufus asks him to let Lily tell Serena the news.

Serena and Dan attempt to return to normal, but find this difficult with Lily and Rufus, who have decided to go public with their relationship. Dan, and Serena both get acceptance letters to Yale but Serena decides that Yale isn't for her and applies to Brown and gives her spot to Blair who was wait-listed. A new teacher named Ms. Carr teaches at Constance Billard and there is an obvious attraction between them. Blair is so willing to get back at Ms. Carr for giving her a B on a paper that she sends in a rumor to Gossip girl concerning a secret relationship going on between Dan and Ms. Carr. Serena herself is becoming suspicious when she sees Dan and Ms. Carr discussing Dan's paper together but believes Dan when he says nothing is going on between the two of them. Serena then sees Dan and Ms. Carr in a coffee shop together. She cannot hear what they are saying but in fact Dan is only comforting Ms. Carr who is in tears about the slanderous teacher-student relationship rumor. Serena captures a photo of Dan touching Ms. Carr's face in an intimate way and shares the photo with Blair although she has doubts about the authenticity of the situation.

Blair enters a parent-teacher meeting at Constance Billard and presents the incriminating photo at hand. Dan explains to Serena nothing happened between him and Ms. Carr but it is too late. Ms. Carr is fired. Serena and Dan's relationship hits another dead end when things become too much for them to take. First their parents start dating, then they find out they shared a half brother together, and now the mess of the rumor.

Serena goes to apologize to Ms. Carr while admitting regretfully that she was the one who gave the photo to Blair. Later Dan visits Ms. Carr and starts to apologize for how things went down but then she kisses him. Dan, at first, is surprised at her actions. Ms. Carr points out that she doesn't teach at Constance anymore so there is no student-teacher relationship. So Dan obliges and they have sex in the dark of the room. Even though Rachel is reinstated, she and Dan have sex again before the school play. Dan then discovers she has used things he told her to humiliate Serena and Blair on Gossip Girl, as well as blocking Blair's application to Yale. He tells the girls what has been going on and Rachel leaves the school.

Dan is accepted at Yale but denied financial aid. He discovers Rufus has invested his college fund with Serena's new boyfriend Gabriel Edwards, who was working with con artist Poppy Lifton. Not trusting Serena, Blair and Chuck to get the money back, Dan goes to Lily for help, resulting in her getting Serena arrested to stop her exposing Poppy. With money from CeCe and a dress from Jenny, Dan manages to bail Serena out of jail and take her to the prom. On graduation day, Dan refuses to take part in Serena's plan to expose Gossip Girl, which results in everyone's secrets, including Dan being arrested, becoming common knowledge. Dan gets a call from Georgina saying the money Poppy took is back in his account and tells her he's going to New York University.

Season 3 Edit

Dan joins Blair, Vanessa and Georgina at New York University and instantly fits in among its many aspiring writers. His stay at NYU also tests his friendship with Vanessa, who assumes that Dan has been absent in their friendship ever since he became wealthy. Dan explains to Vanessa that he and his family are still adjusting to their nouveau-riche status and Vanessa leaves frustrated at Dan.

Dan's first day at NYU reveals Georgina Sparks' return. When Georgina throws a party, Blair's attempt at sabotage results in Dan standing up for Georgina. Dan is popular at NYU, and his influence leaves Blair ostracized.

Dan and Georgina's relationship is short-lived in the episode "The Lost Boy." Georgina sends Blair on a wild goose chase to enter an elite secret society that gets her into a bidding war with Chuck Bass at an auction. Serena recognizes Georgina's handwriting in Blair's invitation to the secret society and confronts her. The Humphrey family leaves and Georgina is left alone at the auction. Serena reveals Georgina's scheming to Dan and Dan ends his relationship with Georgina. Georgina leaves for Boston when she discovers that Scott, Vanessa's boyfriend, is Rufus and Lily's love-child and that Vanessa had known that he was for a long time.

In "Dan de Fleurette," Dan moves on from his relationship with Georgina when he meets Olivia, a Hollywood film star who attended NYU to experience life as a normal college student. Dan first meets Olivia, who calls herself Kate until her movie premiere of Fleur reveals that she is Olivia Burke, a Hollywood movie star. Olivia apologizes to Dan and they embark in a new relationship.

Georgina's return from Boston has her blackmailing Vanessa when she discovers that Dan has moved on from their relationship so quickly in "Rufus Getting Married." Dan, then persuades Vanessa to reveal her secret, only to find out that Scott Rosson is his half-brother, the love-child of Rufus and Lily. Rufus and Lily's wedding has Dan and Vanessa reluctant to tell the truth about Scott. On Rufus and Lily's wedding when Lily gets cold feet, Rufus confronts her with Scott unknowingly asking if their wedding was off. Lily scolds Scott and Georgina reveals that Scott is their love-child. Dan arrives with the rest of the family and confirms Georgina's statement. Dan and Blair find Georgina eating the wedding cake and Blair leaves. At the end of the episode, Dan expresses regret that Georgina left unscathed. Blair assures him that she didn't by sending Dorota and Vanya to get rid of her.

Dan and Olivia encounter several troubles in their relationship when Vanessa alienates them both during her attempt at getting the freshman toast at NYU. When Dan introduces Olivia to Rufus and Lily, she starts acting like a stereotypical movie star towards them until Vanessa reveals that she lied to the both of them so that Olivia wouldn't have to meet her judgmental mother, Gabriela. Vanessa loses the toast to Olivia and properly reintroduces Olivia the next morning after the incident. Olivia's movie star background also catches up to her when she is forced to continue her fake relationship with Patrick Roberts, her former co-star. Serena intervenes and Dan and Olivia soon manage to make their relationship public.

Dan and Olivia's relationship soon comes to an end when Olivia is again forced back into the world of film and return to Hollywood but not without Dan and Vanessa giving her the best college experience. The college experience results in a threesome that consequently leads to Dan and Olivia's break-up when Olivia states that Dan has feelings for Vanessa. Vanessa unfortunately, falls for theater student, Paul Hoffman.

With Olivia gone, Dan confesses his love for Vanessa during the anniversary of Bart Bass' death but Vanessa turns him down. Dan attempts to impress Vanessa by impressing Gabriela that ends with Gabriela telling Dan that if he breaks Vanessa's heart, their friendship wouldn't make it. Vanessa eventually reveals her feelings for Dan at a beach party when Dan arrives with a fresh date and Vanessa gets back together with Paul Hoffman. Dan had been unaware that Vanessa had ended her relationship with Paul until Paul and Dan's date reveals each other's predicaments, get together and leave Dan and Vanessa at the party. Dan and Vanessa reveal their feelings toward each other and kiss at the end of the episode.

Dan finds little trouble with his relationship with Vanessa and reveals their relationship to Rufus. Vanessa, frustrated at the lack of something different in their relationship, heeds Nate's advice on role-playing and sets up a date fashioned according to Dan's favorite movie Rear Window. Vanessa is not convinced that Dan appreciates what she did for her date, and she leaves. Dan confronts her and tells her that their relationship is different from their friendship.

Dan applies to get into the Tisch School of the Arts writing program at NYU, as Vanessa reads and secretly critiques one of the stories that he plans on submitting for admission. Dan secretly read Vanessa's film script and is impressed, unaware that Vanessa is also applying for the same program.

Towards the end of the season, Vanessa decides to accept an internship with CNN, that of which requires her to go on a six-month trip to Haiti. Despite this, the two of them decide that they can still maintain their relationship as a long-distance one.

In the season finale, Dan wakes up with Serena in his bed. The viewers learn that the two did not sleep together but - after staying up until 4AM talking and drinking wine - they shared a kiss, that of which Serena classifies as them "falling into a comfortable path for one. or ten minutes." When Dan hears that Serena breaks up with Nate, he calls her, possibly to say he had feelings for her. When she announces she won't be back to talk to him till September he appears very disappointed. He then shuts the e-mail he had opened to write to Vanessa, his current girlfriend, who is no longer taking his calls (due to Nate's interception after finding out from Gossip Girl's blast and later overhearing at the hospital about the kiss). When he later learns that Serena is going to Paris with Blair, he goes online to book a ticket. Before he can, however, Georgina visits Dan and tells him that she's pregnant with his child.

Season 4 Edit

—Vanessa reveals Dan's secret desire to be a part of the Upper East Side

It is revealed Georgina gave birth to a son, Milo, on July 7, 2010, though it is unknown whether Dan is the father, because they never did a DNA test. It is later revealed to be another one of her schemes when she abruptly leaves New York, leaving Dan alone with Milo. She left a note saying that she went to the "spa." Georgina returns from the "spa" (she was in fact in St. Barths) to tell Dan about Serge, Milo's real father, and to say that she and Milo are going to live with Georgina's parents. Dan is sad to see Milo go. He tries to embark on a relationship with Serena, who is still torn over him and Nate. Blair and Dan team up to find Juliet in Connecticut. They do find her with Serena, but get a shock when Serena tells them that Lily was the one who put Ben in jail instead of herself. It was revealed that Blair and Dan went to see a couple of movies together, though the both say that they are not friends. Blair was fired from her internship at W Magazine, but since Dan connived to get her fired, he confessed and convinced Epperly to re-hire Blair. Hereafter, Blair got better position as a team leader, since her boss decided to retire. On Valentine's Day, Blair found out that Chuck had real romantic feelings for Raina Thorpe. Dan stalked Blair to try to convince her to publish his short story, and the two of them made the discovery together (Chucks real feelings for Raina) while hidden behind a curtain. They went their separate ways, but spent the rest of the evening talking together on their cell phones while watching Rosemary's Baby on their laptops. Afterwards, both got a hidden closed relationship and denied the friendship to everybody. Feeling something beyond that happened, they tried to overcome the all confusions and denials by only one kiss. Later, Dan admits to Eric and to Charlie that he has romantic feelings for Blair.

In the finale, it was revealed that Dan had been writing a scathing novel based on his life for the past five years. While looking for Charlie at the loft, Vanessa reads his novel and hints at the possibility that he possesses unrequited feelings for Blair all the while realizing that Dan always wanted to be a part of the Upper East side. Vanessa encourages him to publish the novel following in a harsh exchange of words during a phone call and resulting in Dan lashing out at Vanessa while she takes matters into her own hands leaves the Humphrey apartment with his novel. Later scenes during the finale show Vanessa offering Dan's novel to a publishing company.

Reaction to triangle Edit

Amidst the fourth season, the romance between Dan and Blair became a polarizing topic among viewers [2] which also drew significant media interest. Jarett Wieselman of the New York Post applauded the development, feeling that Blair had "more chemistry" with Dan than with Chuck. [3] New York magazine's Chris Rovzar called Blair and Dan's story line "believable", citing their common ground in education and taste. Rovzar further stated, "Since they live in a world where both only seem to have half a dozen real friends (if that), is it so crazy they'd end up together?" [4] The Huffington Post declared that “Dan and Blair together are like Harry Burns and Sally Albright reincarnated — the couple was obviously inspired by When Harry Met Sally. .” It further commented that the couple paralleled Pacey and Joey’s relationship from Dawson’s Creek and concluded that Dan and Blair were “the most inspired storyline and couple of the show”. [5] Entertainment Weekly stated that Dan and Blair were like stars in an “updated version of You’ve Got Mail”. [6] Tierney Bricker of E! ranked all 25 Gossip Girl couples placing ‘Dair’ as the third best couple after Blair and Serena (#1) and ‘Chair’ (#2). Bricker stated that “[Dan and Blair], out of all the main characters, were the most well-suited for each other. In real-life, they would've been ‘endgame’.” [7]

Dawn Fallik of The Wall Street Journal was less positive, asserting that "both characters have been so Blandified that there’s no fun left in the show." [8] A writer for E! Online's Team WWK labeled the Dan/Blair relationship "nomance nonsense". [9]

With regard to Chuck and Blair, Meester stated, "I can really relate to it—not necessarily because it's this dramatic, tumultuous relationship, but because the way they love each other is very real, and not for the sake of being dramatic. It's actual love. There's nobody for each other but them." [10] Meester also expressed fondness for Dan and Blair, however, stating, "I think they're good for each other in a lot of ways, in a way that Chuck and Blair aren't." [2] Badgley claimed that he thought "Blair [was] Dan’s soul mate" [11] and further stated that he thought the Blair and Dan storyline was "the most exciting for Dan as a person". [12] When Hollywoodlife.com asked Ed Westwick who played Chuck Bass which character he thought loved Blair more: Chuck or Dan, Westwick pointed to Badgley, saying "definitely him." [13]

Producers initially noticed chemistry between Blair and Dan in the Season 1 episode "Bad News Blair". According to producer Joshua Safran, the creators planned to revisit their relationship once the timing was right. Safran also stated that the outcome wasn't necessarily decided ahead of time. "One thing we are very conscious of—and I know some fans get upset about this—is we really try to treat the characters as living, breathing, well-rounded individuals. And we're often surprised by where their journeys take them they open new doors for us all the time." [1]

Season 5 Edit

The fifth season opens with Dan in the Hamptons. He appears upset when he receives Blair's invitation for her royal wedding. Dan soon finds out that someone has published his book, Inside. Meanwhile, Blair, back from her cruise and is currently in Manhattan again, is frustrated with Louis' domineering mother, who feels the need to have complete control over the wedding. Dan finds out that Vanessa has published his book without his permission and tries to undo the damage, especially after Vanity Fair want to publish a part about Dan and Blair. Desperate, Dan turns to Louis for some help, hoping the prince could put some royal weight on it and manage to cancel the publishing. Louis informs him that he promised earlier to Blair that he's going to take her to the Royal consulate, so he calls her and tells her that he would not be able to make it, much to Blair's disappointment.

Soon after, Blair then arrives at Dan's loft and tells him that despite they haven't spoken since the holidays, she needs a friend to talk to and believes that he is the only one that will truly listen. She announces that she plans to break it off with Louis and asks him about his trip to the Hamptons, to which he responds to staying at CeCe's house.

She asks him to take her there and Dan tells her he will be there for her for whatever she needs. He decides to conceal the real reason why Louis couldn't make it, and just as they were about to make a move, Louis comes enters the loft. Blair assumes that he was following her and starts reprimanding him, until Dan's conscience gets the better of him and reveals that Louis was only helping him with his book issue. Blair soon becomes furious with Dan as he did not tell her the real reason why Louis could not make it and departs with Louis, arm-in-arm, leaving Dan alone and heartbroken. And at the end of the episode it's been revealed that Blair is the one pregnant.

Over the next few episodes, Blair is found having trouble keeping the pregnancy a secret and begins having morning sickness. Things get more difficult when Louis's sister, Princess Beatrice, comes to town. When she hears Blair's morning sickness in the bathroom, she begins to assume that Blair has gone back to being bulimic. She decides to invite Blair to a feast to be sure.

Meanwhile, in Brooklyn, Dan is still trying to stop the publishing of his book, in order to save the relationship he has built with his closest friends and family. He calls Serena on the phone and asks her how she went through Lily's bank account so that he can go to Vanessa's bank and look for the publisher, but she tells him that it was all Chuck's doing, driving him to go searching for Chuck. To his horror, he finds Chuck getting beat up by men. He attempts to save Chuck, when he reveals that the men were not real criminals and he paid them to hurt him, much to Dan's astonishment. This leads Dan to search for Blair and inform her about Chuck's recent dilemma.

Meanwhile, at the feast, Blair begins to feel sick and searches for an excuse to run to the bathroom without arising suspicion. She begins to silently pray to God for a way out, and once she finishes, she sees Dan at the front of the door. Blair rushes to his side and drags him to the toilet and orders him to guard the door. Dan announces that Chuck is getting himself into trouble again, but Blair brushes it off, stating that he's merely doing it to get her attention.

Once Dan hears Blair throw up, he begins to get worried and, like Beatrice, assumes that she has gone back to her previous bulimic ways. He voices out his concern and Blair leaves the washroom stall, stating that she was not bulimic, but instead pregnant. However, Beatrice walks into the bathroom just as Blair reveals her pregnancy to Dan. The both of them are shocked, but agree to keep it a secret.

Afterwards, Blair arrives at Dan's loft once again, revealing to him that she is uncertain who the father of her unborn child is. He encourages her to take a test, but she refuses, stating that she'll lose everything if Chuck is the actual father. Dan responds that she will still have him, causing Blair to cry and rest her head on Dan's shoulder. He then kisses her forehead.

However, Blair, being her usual self, still tries to avoid taking the test, but after much persuasion from Dan, she eventually does, and announces that the father is Louis. She then tells Louis that she's pregnant, much to his elation. Soon afterwards, Serena, Nate, Chuck, Louis's mother, Eleanor and Cyrus all know about Blair's pregnancy, and she decides not to keep anymore secrets regarding her unborn child.

Dan decides that it is time for him to tell Blair about his feelings for her, engaged or not, when she comes and visits him at his loft, feeling heavy-hearted and dejected. She tells him that she wishes to be happy again, but has forgotten how to be.

After a very emotional phone call with Chuck, Blair enters Dan's living room heartbroken, looking devastated and emotionally drained. This drives Dan to attempt and bring Chuck and Blair together again, determined to bring joy back into Blair's life. He decides to keep his feelings for Blair quiet and bottled up, only letting Serena know how he feels about her.

Dan leads both Chuck and Blair individually into an enclosed candlelight room. Once they both come face-to-face, Dan closes the door and shows himself out, leaving them both alone. Then, he engages in a discussion with Serena, telling her that all he wants is for Blair to be happy. Serena to tells him that he's one of the good guys, due to his selflessness regarding Blair's happiness.

While Blair and Chuck are whisking away in a limo, planning on running away together and raising Blair's unborn baby as Chuck's child, they both end up in a serious, life-threatening car accident when paparazzi tail them continuously after Charlie sends Gossip Girl a blast, informing her on Chuck and Blair's whereabouts.

The accident causes Serena, who is alongside Nate and Dan, to be more furious at Gossip Girl than ever before, and blames her entirely for the accident caused. Dan monotonously states that she didn't jump on one of the motorcycles and chase Chuck and Blair down the road, but Serena angrily responds that the accident is merely the result of all the amount of damage that Gossip Girl has caused throughout the years. Nate agrees, and he Serena begin planning on taking Gossip Girl down for good, to avenge Chuck and Blair, as Dan anxiously waits for news on Blair.

In the next episode, Blair learns that she lost the baby in the accident, much to her depression and despair, and she immediately bursts into tears when the news reaches her. She becomes even more terrified when Serena tells her that Chuck is in serious danger, due to losing a large amount of blood. This drives her to make a secret deal with God, promising Him that if He saves Chuck's life, she would marry Louis and not go back to being with Chuck. Once she makes the promise, the nurse informs her that Chuck is asking for her. She decides that this means that God has honored their promise, and chooses to further her relationship with Louis, deciding against pursuing her relationship with Chuck.

She informs Dan about her deal and tells him to keep it a secret, to which he agrees. Soon, only Dan and Serena know about Blair's promise. She begins avoiding Chuck and Louis, who collaborate to find out what was going on with Blair, and find pictures of Dan and Blair together in New York, learning that the only man she's not avoiding is Dan.

When she tells him that she needs him, and he responds that he has her, once again confirming that he will be there for her during the hard times.

When Dan walks in on Blair in her wedding dress, he tells her that she looks perfect, making her cry. She says that she can no longer get married in the dress, as now all she sees is everything she's lost. Dan comforts her and tells her that she should change her mind about marrying Louis, but she insists on pursuing the wedding, stating she's committed to him.

They both falsely assume that she's having an affair with Dan, to which she immediately denies. Soon later, she finds Louis's wedding vows, and is pleasantly stunned with how accurately he describes her and how much love the vows display. She tells Serena that she feels as if Louis had "peered into her soul," and now is happy with the decision she had made, believing that Louis is the one for her.

However, unknown to Blair, Dan was the one who wrote the vows, after Louis asked him to. On her wedding day, Blair and Chuck confront each other once again, and Blair declares that she does indeed love him, but cannot be with him. She leaves the room to attend the ceremony, leaving Chuck alone in the room.

Cyrus and Harold both give Blair away, and Dan and Serena walk down the aisle together. However, it appears that someone taped Chuck and Blair's moment, when Blair was professing her love for Chuck to him. It sends Blair running down the aisle and causes her to blame Chuck, assuming he was the one who sent the blast to Gossip Girl. Soon, she returns to the altar, and she and Louis continue the wedding. After Louis and Blair say their vows and take each other as man and wife, Serena tells Dan that she loves him, that she always had and she always will, just before Louis and Blair take their first dance as a married couple. As Blair tells Louis that she's very thankful for giving her a princess title and especially grateful that he gave her another chance, he coldly responds that their wedding was all for show and there is nothing but a contract between them. He tells her that when they're alone, they'll become like strangers to each other.

After the wedding, Dan is certain he has lost Blair to Louis but soon finds out it is a sham wedding when Blair asks him for help to get out of the country and file for a divorce. Taking her to the airport he realizes just how much she needs to get out of this situation and lies to Serena about her whereabouts, this leaves him with a problem when he is discovered with Blair later on.

Soon afterwards, Blair arrives from her honeymoon to Manhattan on Valentine's Day, she tries to set Dan and Serena up once again. However, when Blair notices the lack of interest Dan has in pursuing his old relationship with Serena. She tells him that she attempted to get Dan and Serena back together because she wants Dan to be happy. Blair asks him what it is that would make him happy, and he responds by kissing her, leaving Blair stunned. She, however, does not stop him and instead slowly begins to reciprocate to the kiss. Unfortunately, Serena, alongside Georgina, accidentally intrudes on Dan and Blair. Georgina manages to snap a picture of Dan and Blair's kiss and soon runs away from the scene, driving Dan to chase after her, leaving Blair and stunned and angered Serena alone together. Blair continues to deny having any feelings for Dan during and after the party to both Dan and Serena.

With Serena and Blair's friendship on shaky grounds Dorota decides to lock them in the dining room up for their own good. Blair decides to prove to Serena by spending a whole day with Dan that her feelings are platonic. Unfortunately, she reciprocates another kiss from Dan while Serena accidentally intrudes on them. Serena dictates that Blair is always in denial when it comes to matters of the heart. During a re-enactment of a scene from the Inside novel, Blair realizes that Dan loves her for her and has so for some time. Putting aside her insecurities she admits to both Serena and Dan that she too has feelings for Dan. Serena then gives Blair her blessing, stating that she does not want to be an obstacle in Dan and Blair's relationship. Soon afterwards, Blair pecks a kiss from Dan and heads off to support Serena with her last moments with CeCe.

In "The Princess Dowry" Dan walks in on Blair discussing what could be a potential way out of her prenup on the phone with Cyrus and another lawyer from his firm. Blair shares the details and after saying that she "wouldn't have to wait a year for . anything" she and Dan exchange smiles.

At CeCe's wake, Chuck outs Dan via Gossip Girl as the sender of the video that was fatal to Blair's marriage. At first, she thinks that it's just a game Chuck is playing and she is unwilling to participate, however, when she sees the guilty looks on Dan's face she realizes that it's the truth. She is mad at him, but forgives him after he tells her that his only reason for sending the video was that he couldn't stand to see Blair so unhappy. Meanwhile, Blair makes a deal with Estee to help her get out of her marriage dowry if there will be no more public mention of it in the media, including Gossip Girl. However, at this time Georgina, who has stolen Dan's phone, teams up with Chuck and sends Gossip Girl a message from Dan's phone uploading the photo of the Valentine's Day kiss, thus ruining Blair's chances of not having to pay the dowry. Dorota shows Blair the blast and she confronts Dan who is confronting Georgina. The latter admits to having been Gossip Girl and it turns out that the deal with Estee was also one of her schemes. Dan goes to confront Chuck, who, after finding out that the blast will bankrupt Blair's family, is regretful, however, he reveals that he has outed Dan for the bad guy he has been and he question whether their friendship was just an act. Blair walks over to them and Chuck tells Dan to be honest and confess that he has been trying to keep him and Blair apart, which Dan does. He apologizes to Blair and leaves. Chuck says that wants Blair and him to try again because all the obstacles that were in their relationship's way are seemingly gone, but Blair tells him that although she loves him, she is not "in love" with him anymore. Later, Georgina visits Blair and promises to get her rid of her dowry in exchange for Blair's support. Blair agrees to this.

In the episode's last scene, Blair goes to Brooklyn. Dan isn't expecting her, as he is assuming she got back together with Chuck. Blair tells him that she isn't there to tell him off and she isn't with Chuck. Dan cracks a joke that clearly expresses his disbelief and surprise at Blair choosing him over the "love of her life," Chuck. She tells him that she told Chuck that he doesn't have her heart anymore as it now belongs to someone else. They kiss and rest their foreheads against each other's. Blair calls him by his first name which amuses Dan and he asks her to "say it again" and they start kissing passionately.

The new couple make a slow and rocky debut on the Upper East side and are faced with numerous challenges including their relations in the bedroom, Blair's lingering feelings for Chuck, and Serena's distaste for their relationship. When Gossip Girl intentionally exposes Blair's secrets on Gossip Girl, Dan comes to terms with Blair's feelings for Chuck, as well as Serena's attempts to sabotage their relationship. In the finale, Dan, having been left by Blair for Chuck, teams up with Georgina in order to write his follow up to "Inside". This time, however, he pledges to write the novel "he should have written from the beginning." Georgina, with her own score to settle with the Upper East side, is more than happy to help.

Season 6 Edit

In Season 6, Dan tells Serena that the reason he didn't give her an answer to the "I love you" was because it was easier to focus on his anger at Blair, than to face the possibility of getting what he always wanted in the fear of losing it again. Dan and Serena throw their first Thanksgiving as a couple together, where Serena affirms her love for Dan by rejecting both Steven and Blair by saying that Dan is her soul-mate and the only love of her life. Dan also solidifies his love by telling Georgina and Rufus that he had a plan all along to win and that there is no winning without Serena.

In the finale, Dan reveals to Serena their first meeting at a party, where Dan first spoke to her and fell madly in love. Dan realized at that party that he could never pull Serena out of her world but he couldn't give up either. He realized that the only way he could get Serena was to write himself into the Upper East Side drama by using a blog to create a legend the blog came to be known as Gossip Girl. Dan then revealed his secret to all by giving Nate his final chapter to publish in the struggling Spectator, revealing to all that the only purpose of Gossip Girl was the love he had for Serena. Serena was overjoyed at the revelation, stating that Dan, through Gossip Girl, had written her and everyone else a seven-year love letter and made her realize that she belongs in the Upper East Side with Dan.

Five years later, Dan and Serena get married, surrounded by their closest friends and family.

Dan Humphrey’s character has garnered much media recognition. Alfonso Espina of The Huffington Post declared that Dan was the “Nick Carraway character we viewers could live vicariously through.” [14] Jason Gay of Rolling Stone praised Badgley’s characterisation, claiming that “while another actor may have played Dan as a blah straight man, Badgley imbued him with an occasionally obnoxious know-it-all-ness.” [15] The New Yorker cited Dan as “the token-boho character” [16] while, New York Magazine described Badgley’s Dan as “the moralistic outsider, or what passes for one on a show produced by the guy who created The O.C.”. [17] Jarett Wieselman of Entertainment Tonight asserted that “charming and disarming in equal measure, Badgley's incarnation of the Brooklyn-boy gone bad was always a comedic and emotional highlight.” [18] Melena Ryzik of The New York Times compared Dan Humphrey’s character to The O.C.'s Seth Cohen, saying they both fulfilled the role of “the darkly comic observer”. [19] Similarly, Julie Weiner of Vanity Fair claimed that Dan was a Schwartzian archetype of Seth in that both characters were “attractive bookish outsiders”. [20]

Other colleagues have also commented on Dan Humphrey’s character. Blake Lively, Badgley’s co-star, declared that "Dan was supposed to be the goofy, nerdy guy who felt like he never measured up to other people, but Penn [Badgley] decided to play it a little more arrogant. Like he's smarter than these spoiled little brats." [21] The series executive producer, Stephanie Savage, claimed that “as he [Dan Humphrey] is the outsider, he's somebody who when he's pointing out what's absurd about the world, you have to believe he's smart enough to get it and also deliver it in a way that you find it kind of amusing and not just critical or judgmental. Hope you enjoyed it XOXO Gossip Girl. ” [18]

A Taste of the Past: White House Kitchens, Menus, and Recipes

When she toured the White House kitchen in 1933, Eleanor Roosevelt’s housekeeper Henrietta Nesbitt found cockroaches crawling in its cupboards. In her book White House Diary she describes her first inspection of the premises—“I can’t work up any charm for cockroaches. No matter how you scrub it, old wood isn’t clean. This was the ‘first kitchen in America,’ and it wasn’t even sanitary. Mrs. Roosevelt and I poked around, opening doors and expecting hinges to fall off and things to fly out. It was that sort of place. Dark-looking cupboards, a huge old-fashioned gas range, sinks with time-worn wooden drains, one rusty wooden dumb waiter. The refrigerator was wood inside and bad-smelling. Even the electric wiring was old and dangerous. I was afraid to switch things on.”

“There is only one solution,” she told Mrs. Roosevelt. “We must have a new kitchen.”

Public Works Project No. 634 was instituted demolition and new construction on the kitchen began in the summer of 1935. During the Depression, the jobless rate was exceedingly high and Franklin Roosevelt insisted relief workers be employed for the reconstruction whenever possible. The renovation, planned by the White House staff and engineers from General Electric and Westinghouse corporations, reconfigured the working space, replaced rusted pipes, put in a whole new electrical system with all-new electric appliances, and installed more efficient dumbwaiters to transport the food to the State Floor dining rooms above. New equipment included six roasting ovens, a sixteen-foot-long stove, eight refrigerators, five dishwashers, a soup kettle, a meat grinder, waffle irons, multiple mixers, a thirty-gallon ice-cream storage freezer, and a deep fryer that held five gallons of fat. Stainless steel storage and counter tops were installed throughout.

The President and Mrs. Roosevelt were delighted, but Mrs. Nesbitt reported that the staff was overwhelmed by the latest technological innovations. They continued to do things the way they had been done in the past: washing dishes, as well as chopping and slicing food—by hand. And unfortunately for President Roosevelt, a new kitchen did not improve the quality or variety of Mrs. Nesbitt’s menus. Mrs. Nesbitt believed in economical, simple, American fare: cheap cuts of meat including brains, sweetbreads, and beef tongues mashed potatoes flavorless canned vegetables molded gelatin salads dotted with marshmallows and insipid desserts. Franklin Roosevelt once joked that the only reason he sought a fourth term of office was so that he could return to the White House to fire Mrs. Nesbitt! Although Roosevelt won his fourth election, Mrs. Nesbitt and her bland menus remained, for Mrs. Roosevelt ran the household staff. In her biography Eleanor Roosevelt: Volume Two, author Blanche Wiesen Cook writes, “ER’s curious disregard for her husband’s tastes suggests an explanation for her persistent defense of Henrietta Nesbitt: The housekeeper was one expression of her passive-aggressive behavior in a marriage of remarkable and labyrinthine complexity.”

Irwin “Ike” Hoover was the White House usher when the Roosevelts moved into the house in 1933. “Republicans dropped out of sight overnight. Those who were left seemed to have changed into Democrats,” he observed. During his forty-plus years of service he had only served under two democratic administrations, that of Grover Cleveland and Woodrow Wilson. When he began his stint in the White House, the basement kitchen was blackened with dirt and grime, the floor covered with slimy bricks. In his memoir Forty-Two Years in the White House, he wrote that he found, “the old open fireplaces once used for the broiling the chickens and baking the hoecakes for the early Fathers of our country, the old cranes and spits still in place. Out of the door to the rear there yet remained the old wine-vault, the meathouse, and the smokehouse . . . you could still almost smell the wine odors and the aroma from the hams and bacon that must have been so deliciously and painstakingly prepared here.”

Open hearth cooking—cooking in a fireplace—was the only way to cook in the White House up until Millard Fillmore’s administration (1850-1853). Meats sizzled on spits over cracking flames or roasted within tin reflecting ovens in front of the hot fire. Iron and bronze pots suspended from a swinging crane held stews, soups, and vegetables. Bread was baked first in the bake ovens built into the back of the hearth wall, and as the temperature dropped inside the oven, in went the pies, and later the cookies and custards. Knowing how to control the cooking temperatures was an art. A cook had to have an understanding of coal and woods and their burn properties. Coal was the hottest and burned the longest. Hard woods—ash, oak, hickory, maple, and dogwood gave good heat, burned evenly, and lasted a long time. Pots and pans were moved in and out of the heat, moved close to the fire or away to control cooking time. A kitchen inventory during James Monroe’s administration included, “1 large copper soup kettle, 1 Large ham boiler, 1 large preserving kettle, 1 ditto fish kettle, with drainers, 1 Large coffee boiler, 1 Brass stew pan, 3 Large sauce pans, 19 Of different sizes . . . 2 Griddles, 1 Toasting iron, 1 Frying pan, 5 Jack spits, 3 coffee mills, 1 Old dripping pan, 2 Spit stands, 4 Trivets, 1 Marble pestle and mortar, 4 Sheet iron cake bakers.”

Today the chefs, cooks, dishwashers, and waiters in the White House kitchens must prepare and serve meals for the President and his family, as well as guests from many countries around the world. Sometimes they create meals and refreshments for five or more social events a day, ranging from family meals, to teas, to private parties, to formal state dinners, to larger receptions for hundreds of people. Many of those who have served our nation cooking for “America’s First Dining Table” feel the same about their experience as did Henry Haller, the Executive Chef for five presidential families from the Johnsons to the Reagans: “My own role as the Executive Chef of the White House has certainly been the most rewarding position I have ever held.”

See and Read More

To view historic pictures of the White House kitchen, go to: WhiteHouseMuseum.org.

For videos demonstrating open hearth cooking, go to:

Many early American historical societies and house museums offer open hearth cooking classes for young people. Using the search engine of your choice, type open hearth cooking classes along with your state’s name and you will find classes near you.

White House Menus

Thomas Jefferson was many things—writer, scholar, horticulturist, architect, interior designer, paleontologist, inventor, philosopher, politician—and an expert of wine and fine cuisine. He preferred to be addressed as Mr. Jefferson, not Mr. President, and criticized both George Washington and John Adams for their “imperial” federalist ways. He advocated a plainness of manner in presidential style but his table was set for a king. Margaret Bayard Smith, a Washington hostess and wife of Samuel Harrison Smith, the publisher of the National Intelligencer newspaper, was often a guest of Mr. Jefferson’s. She described Jefferson’s dinners as “republican simplicity . . . united to Epicurean delicacy.”

Jefferson loved all things French and employed a French cook, Honoré Julien. Patrick Henry once remarked that Jefferson, after serving as minister to France, “came home from France so Frenchified that he abjured his native victuals.” But Jefferson loved native-grown fruits and vegetables—corn, black-eyed peas, huckleberries, turnip greens. Invitations to the Jefferson’s dinner parties at the White House were coveted not only for social and political reasons, but because the food was delectable. Congressman Manasseh Cutler of Massachusetts wrote this of the dinner menu he attended at the White House on February 6, 1802. “Dined at the President’s—Rice soup, round of beef, turkey, mutton, ham, loin of veal, cutlets of mutton or veal, fried eggs, fried beef, a pie called macaroni, which appeared to be a rich crust filled with scallion onions or shallots, which I took it to be, tasted very strong and not very agreeable. Mr. Lewis [Meriwether Lewis] told me there were none in it it was an Italian dish, and what appeared like onions were made of flour and butter, with particularly strong liquor mixed with them. Ice cream very good, crust wholly dried, crumbled into thin flakes a dish somewhat like a pudding—inside white as milk or curd, very porous and light covered with cream sauce—very fine. Many other jimcracks, a great variety of fruit, plenty of wine and good.”

“Plenty of wine” was a correct assessment, for Jefferson drank one to four glasses of wine a day, ordering it by the barrel from Italy, France, Spain, and Portugal, and served four to six wines with dinner. His wine bill exceeded $10,000 for his eight years in the presidency, a princely sum in the first decade of the 19 th century.

Today, White House menus and wine lists from small dinner parties to large state dinners are much discussed by the first lady, her social secretary, and the White House chefs. The type and style of the meal or event, the special guests and their country or state of origin, the social and political goals of the event, the world and local atmosphere surrounding the meal, the availability of fresh ingredients, the season of the year, the guests’ attitudes toward alcoholic beverages, and guests’ food allergies—all these things must be assessed before planning a White House menu.

After significant research by the executive chef, the pastry chef, their staffs, and the White House social staff, a menu is developed that is appropriate for the proposed social event. The first lady, and sometimes the president, reviews the food and wine choices that are proposed and give their opinion and approval. For important occasions, like state dinners, the chefs will actually cook menu items so that the first lady and her social secretary can taste foods and work with the chefs to refine the menu.

Menus may be printed, but more often than not White House calligraphers hand-letter individual menus for guests. Guests can then take their menus home with them as a souvenir of their experience. Some guests even circulate their menus at their table requesting the autographs of their table mates. You never know who you will be sitting next to when you dine at the White House!

Menu for the James Buchanan Inaugural Ball—March 4, 1857

400 gallons of oysters
60 saddles of mutton
4 saddles of venison
125 beef tongues
75 hams
500 quarts of chicken salad
500 quarts of jellies
A four-foot cake
$3,000 worth of wine

James Buchanan, the only bachelor president, thought that multiple inaugural balls were outrageous wastes of time and energy. He reinstated the single inaugural ball concept, but had to construct a new $15,000 building* on Judiciary Square in Washington to accommodate his 6,000 guests. Guests were served on long tables set against red, white, and blue walls, and when their appetites were satiated they danced beneath a white ceiling glittering with hundreds of gold stars.

You can see pictures of Buchanan’s Inaugural Ball on the Library of Congress website loc.gov:

Abraham Lincoln’s Inaugural Luncheon Menu, March 4, 1861

Mock Turtle Soup
Corned Beef and Cabbage
Parsley Potatoes
Blackberry Pie

Abraham Lincoln was not known for his culinary sensibilities. His was more of a “food for fuel” perspective. He often got so caught up in his work that he forgot to eat. He was partial to cornbread drizzled with honey and good cup of strong coffee. He did have a sweet tooth. A Washington, D.C. baker claimed the president was one of his best pecan pie customers. Despite his apparent lack of interest in cuisine, Lincoln did plan the menu for the luncheon that followed his inauguration. It was served midday at the Willard’s Hotel in Washington after the ceremonies at the Capitol had ended. Immediately after the luncheon, Lincoln and his family moved into the White House.

Nellie Grant’s Wedding Breakfast Menu, May 21, 1874
State Dining Room

Woodcock and Snipe on Toast
Soft Crabs on Toast
Chicken Croquettes with Fresh Peas
Aspic of Beef Tongue
Lamb Cutlets
Broiled Spring Chicken
Strawberries with Cream
Wedding Cake iced with Doves, Roses, and Wedding Bells
Ice Creams and Ices
Fancy Cakes
Punch • Coffee • Chocolate

Nellie Grant, the charming and vivacious daughter of President and Mrs. Ulysses S. Grant, was sent off on a tour of Europe in the hopes of removing her from the public’s eyes and press’ grasp. Bad idea Nellie made even more news across the ocean. She was wined and dined all over Europe and presented to Queen Victoria at Buckingham Palace. And at age seventeen, on the voyage home, she fell madly in love with a young, handsome English diplomat, Mr. Algernon Sartoris, the nephew of a famous actress. The whole White House staff prepared for her wedding. It was to be “one of the most brilliant weddings ever given in the United States.” The bride wore a gown of white satin edged in Brussels lace a crown of orange blossoms held her tulle veil to her head. She carried a bouquet of tuberoses and orange blossoms and in the cluster of pink rosebuds at the center of her bouquet was a small flag with the word “Love” printed on it. The wedding breakfast menu was printed in gold on white satin and given to guests as souvenirs of the occasion. Gifts poured in from all over the world, but the most unique gift was a poem, “A Kiss for the Bride” written by Walt Whitman. Unfortunately, Nellie and Algernon did not live happily ever after. Algernon became an alcoholic and Nellie left him, taking their four children with her.

A Kiss to the Bride

Sacred, blithesome, undenied,
With benisons from East and West,
And salutations North and South,
Through me indeed to-day a million hearts and hands,
Wafting a million loves, a million soul-felt prayers
—Tender and true remain the arm that shields thee
Fair winds always fill the ship’s sails that sail thee!
Clear sun by day, and bright stars at night, beam on thee!
Dear girl—through me the ancient privilege too,
For the New World, through me, the old, old wedding greeting:
O youth and health! O sweet Missouri rose! O bonny bride!
Yield thy red cheeks, thy lips, to-day,
Unto a Nation’s loving kiss.

President and Mrs. Eisenhower’s Dinner Menu

in Honor of King Paul and Queen Frederika of Greece, October 28, 1955

Shrimp Cocktail
Cocktail Sauce Saltine Crackers
Clear Consommé
Sliced Lemmon
Celery Hearts • Assorted Olives
Fairy Toast
White Fish in Cheese Sauce
Boston Brown Bread Sandwiches
White Wine
Crown Roast of Lamb Stuffed With Spanish Rice
Mint Jelly
French Peas • Braised Celery
Bread Sticks
Orange and Roquefort Cheese Salad Bowl
French Dressing
Toasted Triscuits
Caramel Cream Mold
Burnt Caramel Sauce
Lemon Iced Diamond Shaped Cookies
Nuts • Candies • Demitasse

Mrs. Ike, as President Eisenhower affectionately called his wife, was a “girlie” girl. She loved hair curls and bangs, the color pink, sparkles, tulle, flowered hats, long gloves, flounced skirts, and—at age fifty-six—she had no problem wearing sleeveless gowns that bared her less-than-firm upper arms. 1950’s America adored her because she was open, unpretentious, and genuinely loved people. Seeing themselves in her, many women viewed her as a kindred spirit, a wife dedicated to home and family. But she was far from the typical housewife. The White House staff nicknamed her “Sleeping Beauty” because she was known to lie in bed for long hours in her favorite pink negligee. The truth was she suffered from asthma and heart palpitation and needed to rest. Mamie Eisenhower was not fond of cooking her husband was the culinary expert in the family. Nevertheless, it was Mrs. Eisenhower, having successfully managed thirty households in her thirty-seven years as a military wife, who approved the menus for events large and small, including her husband’s many stag dinners. Her food choices reflected both the times and her Iowa upbringing.

President and Mrs. John Kennedy’s Menu
for a Luncheon with Princess Grace, May 24, 1961

Soft-Shell Crab Amadine
Puligny-Montrachet 1958

Spring Lamb Á La Broche Aux Primeurs
Château Croton Grancey 1955

Salade Mimosa
Dom Pérignon 1952

Strawberies Romanoff
Petits Fours Secs

Joining President and Mrs. Kennedy and the Prince and Princess of Monaco for lunch were Senator and Mrs. Claiborne Pell, Mr. and Mrs. Franklin Delano Roosevelt Jr. (the third of Mr. Roosevelt’s five wives), movie producer and director Fred Coe and his wife, and Mr. William Walton, a journalist, painter, and close friend of the president. Princess Grace, the actress Grace Kelly before her marriage, wore a fringed green jacket over a matching sheath dress, white gloves, and an unusual white turban featuring a froth of curled feathers or ribbons. (The hat was a definite fashion faux pas.) Mrs. Kennedy’s social secretary, Letitia Baldrige, in her conversations with the President the week before the luncheon, had jokingly referred to Prince Rainier of Monaco numerous times as Prince Reindeer. At one point during lunch the president turned to respond to Prince Rainer and out slipped “Prince Reindeer.” For a few days after the luncheon, Miss Baldrige was not one of the president’s favorite people. Four years later in an interview, Princess Grace was able to recall every detail of the lunch including all the dishes she had eaten. By that measure, the lunch was a huge success.

A Sampling of Recipes from the First Ladies, and a Few from the Presidents, too!

The George Washington Administration: Martha Washington and Nelly Custis Lewis

Martha Dandridge Custis Washington was a plump widow with two children when George Washington married her. She not only brought property and elite social status to the match, she brought vast property holdings, too. A self-described “old-fashioned Virginia house-keeper,” she was experienced in handling a large household and was a much admired if somewhat reserved hostess. At fifty-eight, Lady Washington was a grandmother when her husband became president. She never resided in the White House, but she managed the first two presidential mansions, first in New York City, and later in Philadelphia, with a the help of many servants as well as her own personal slaves brought north from Virginia. Her “receipt book” was filled with directions for making cakes, fools, hartychoakes, oly-kocks, possets, trifles, and chickin frykasies.

Nelly Custis was Martha’s granddaughter, George Washington’s beloved step-granddaughter. She described the average day for George Washington at Mount Vernon: “He rose before sunrise, always wrote or read until 7 in summer or half past seven in winter. His breakfast was then ready—he ate three small mush cakes (Indian meal) swimming in butter and honey, drank three cups of tea without cream . . .”

The Thomas Jefferson Administration: Martha Jefferson Randolph and Thomas Jefferson

The Virginia Housewife was Martha Jefferson Randolph’s cookbook. As one of Thomas Jefferson’s daughters, Martha Randolph occasionally acted as the White House hostess for her father during his time as president. The cookbook was published as a gift of her sister-in-law, and her father could not help but jot down his own recipes on the some of the blank pages in the book.

Read Martha Jefferson Randolph’s recipes (including Macaroni, Chicken Pudding, and Gooseberry Fool) and Thomas Jefferson’s recipes (including Cabbage Pudding and Ice Cream).

The Rutherford B. Hayes Administration: Lucy Web Hayes

Lucy Hayes was the first first lady to graduate from college at nineteen with high honors from the Wesleyan Female College in Cincinnati, Ohio. Although she believed in women’s intellectual abilities in an era when women’s capabilities were questioned by many, she, like many women in the 19th century, was not yet liberated. She wrote, “Woman’s mind is as strong as man’sequal in all things and his superior in some.” Mrs. Hayes promoted simple American fare in the family’s private dining, but state dinners were executed and served in the French style with one exception no wine or alcoholic beverages were given to guests at the White House. Her temperance attitude earned her the nickname Lemonade Lucy, and many a White House visitor was disappointed that the president approved her stance.

Read Lucy Web Hayes’ recipes (which include Corn Bread and Oyster Stew).

The Franklin Roosevelt Administration: Henrietta Nesbitt

When meat was rationed during World War II, the White House had to stretch its meat allotment, too. But Mrs. Nesbitt, Roosevelt’s housekeeper, said that she would not skimp on the president’s food if she could help it others would have to sacrifice because she did not want to worry him about food. According to Mrs. Nesbitt, favorite White House meat-stretcher foods were: “stuffed peppers, stew, ham scallop, noodles and mushrooms with chicken scraps, spaghetti with meat-cakes cut down from the ‘good old American size’ to mere marbles, curries or omelets with meat tidbits croquettes for a sustaining meal in themselves minestrone soup or fish chowders, ‘both good meals in themselves’ creamed cheeses (soft ones weren’t rationed) for a satisfying light meal gumbo z’herbes (good light meal for children if less spiced) stuffed eggs (meat bits for stuffing) baked beans, deviled meats and casseroles.”

The Dwight Eisenhower Administration: Dwight Eisenhower

As mentioned, Mamie Eisenhower was not interested in cooking, but her husband was an enthusiastic cook. He had been taught to cook, sew, and clean by his mother who believed that all her sons should be well versed in what she considered to be essential life skills. The following recipe of President Eisenhower was included in a menu for a dinner given in honor of the prime minister of Canada and the president of Mexico in April, 1956.

The John F. Kennedy Administration: Chef René Verdon

René Verdon was the French chef hired by Jacqueline Kennedy to work at the White House. He received the title Chevalier de la Legion d’Honneur for his contribution to French cuisine. During the Kennedy administration he became an American citizen.

Read two of Chef René Verdon’s Recipes (Strawberries Romanoff and Boston Clam Chowder) from In the Kennedy Style.

Activity Ideas for Young People

Find a White House cook booka few are listed in the reference section below—at your local library and try to create some of the dishes at home with the children and teens in your family. Cooking with recipes will increase your child’s and teen’s reading and comprehension skills, as well as challenge their math skills. It also introduces your child to chemistry. And most importantly, it is a fun activity the whole family can enjoy together! For more information on literacy/cooking activities, go to “Cooking with Cookbooks: Teaching Your Child Basic Cooking and Kitchen Safety” on the NCBLA’s website thencbla.org.

For a classroom activity choose an international event from the era of America history your class is studying. Have students research the event and the countries involved in the event. They could also research a county’s culture with the goal of planning a menu for a state dinner that would help America build a working relationship with that nation. The menu should also reflect the social and cultural norms of that time period.

To get young people excited about different eras in American history, include information and projects that address domestic history, too. We recommend two great online sources for incorporating food and recipes, both of which reveal so much about any era of history.

  • The first is The Food Timeline. The Food Timeline was created by Lynne Olver, reference librarian and International Association of Culinary Professionals (IACP) member, in response to students, parents, and teachers who frequently asked for help locating food history and period recipes at the Morris County Library (Whippany, NJ). The site is an independent research project and is not sponsored by, or affiliated with, any food companies. Information is checked against standard reference tools for accuracy—Oxford Encyclopedia of Food and Drink in America (Smith), The Oxford Companion to Food (Davidson), The Cambridge World History of Food (Kiple & Ornelas), Larousse Gastronomique (Revised/Updated English edition, 2001), The Encyclopedia of American Food & Drink (Mariani), Food in History (Tannahill), History of Food (Toussaint-Samat), and other sources as needed.
  • The second site is Feeding America: The Historic America Cookbook. The Michigan State University Library and the MSU Museum have partnered to create an online collection of some of the most influential and important American cookbooks from the late 18th to early 20th century. The goal of this project is to make these materials available to a wider audience with digital images of the pages of each cookbook as well as full-text transcriptions and the ability to search within the books across the collection.

Discussion Questions for Young People at Home and in the Classroom

  • What do food and menus tell us about people, countries, and eras of history?
  • Can food and menu choices tell us anything about historical figures’ personalities?
  • In this piece, it’s mentioned that President Eisenhower’s mother thought it important to teach him how to cook. Should everyone learn to cook? Would cooking have been an important skill for President Eisenhower to learn? Why?
  • Although some presidents have been concerned with food issues at the White House, historically it has been the first ladies who have had most influence and have controlled White House menus. What do you think will happen when a woman becomes president of the United States? Will the “first gentleman” be in charge of food, menu, and dinner planning at the White House?

Reference Sources

Baldrige, Letitia. In the Kennedy Style. New York: Doubleday, 1998.

Clinton, Hillary Rodham. An Invitation to the White House: At Home with History. New York: Simon & Schuster, 2000.

Cook, Blanche Wiesen. Eleanor Roosevelt: Volume 2. New York: Viking, 1999.

Ervin, Janet Halliday. The White House Cookbook. Chicago: Follett Publishing Company, 1964.

Haller, Henry. The White House Family Cookbook. New York: Random House, 1987.

Klapthor, Margaret Brown. The First Ladies Cookbook. New York: GMG Publishing, 1982.

Landau, Barry H. The President’s Table: Two Hundred Years of Dining and Diplomacy. New York: HarperCollins, 2007.

McCully, Helen and Bullock, Helen Duprey. The American Heritage Cookbook. U.S.A.: American Heritage Publishing Co., Inc., 1964.

Truman, Margaret. The President’s House. New York: Ballantine Books, 2003.

Whitcomb, John and Claire. Real Life in the White House. New York: Routledge, 2000.


Haber, Barbara. “Home Cooking in the White House.” White House History Journal (Journal of the White House Historical Association) no. 20 (Spring 2007).

Ross, Alice. “Kitchens Past: Thoughts on Open Hearth Cooking for the Presidents.” White House History Journal (Journal of the White House Historical Association) no. 20 (Spring 2007).

Tederick, Lydia Barker. “A Look at the White House Kitchens.” White House History Journal (Journal of the White House Historical Association) no. 20 (Spring 2007).

©2016 Mary Brigid Barrett The National Children’s Book and Literacy Alliance

OUR WHITE HOUSE. Illustration © 2008 by S. D Schindler. Reproduced by permission of the publisher, Candlewick Press, Somerville, MA.

Watch the video: Meet Prince Charming 2002 (January 2022).