This post is a bit overdue, as we have brunched at Rustico twice at this point and the last occasion was way back in the spring. The first time we went was in celebration of finishing the Cherry Blossom 10-miler. There is nothing like a solid meal after intense exercise! I love the combination of being freshly showered with my tired legs under the table and a hearty food set in front of me.
The second time we brunched at Rustico was for my birthday and on this occasion we went with dear friends from our bible study. I really love Rustico. Sure, my friend Carrie and I received celebrity-like treatment when we made pizza with Chef Steve Mannino, but it is one of my top Arlington restaurants even putting this great first impression event aside. I think it also says something that my favorite brunch bloggers actually ventured out of the city to try it out.
What is so great about Rustico? The restaurant is inviting and homey, but still modern and hip. The food is creative. For example, the Pumpkin Hummus with lamb and feta, the Chicken Caesar salad with grilled romaine, and the Pretzel Crusted Mac ‘n’ Cheese are all unique and delicious options.
Rustico also boasts a great party area in the lower back part of the restaurant. As someone who is constantly scoping out venues for different types of events, I think this would be a great work happy hour area, or could maybe even be used as a small rehearsal dinner space. I haven’t looked into prices yet, but maybe we’ll even see about booking it for a birthday party or other life event celebration!
All in all, Rustico is a versatile restaurant that functions well for many types of occasions. Brunch is no exception, and I will certainly be returning for more Fried Oyster Benedict as well as a superior overall dining experience.