Easy Like Sunday Morning – The Yards
, April 17

One of DC’s most highly-anticipated new restaurants, Chloe, is the brainchild of superstar chef and owner Haidar Karoum. The eclectic brunch menu is influenced by Karoum’s travels through Europe and Southeast Asia.

Did your family go to brunch often when you were growing up in northern Virginia? I can probably count on one hand the number of times we went to brunch! Not that often. My [Lebanese] father was the cook in our household and I grew up eating traditional eastern Mediterranean mezze dishes for brunch. The crispy cauliflower on Chloe’s menu is the dish my dad would always bring to potluck dinners. It gets better the longer it sits out on the table and absorbs all the flavors. What makes a great brunch dish? I gravitate towards bold, delicious flavors. We do a variety of French toasts with house-made bread steeped in a mixture of milk that’s been infused with cinnamon, star anise and cloves, orange peel and sweet sherry, and served with a roasted almond marcona butter. Hopefully people will notice that there’s a lot of care and thought that go into our brunch dishes. Brunch is really a leisurely experience. Does the menu reflect that at all? We encourage the sharing aspect of dining. It should feel almost like you’re inviting people over to your house. I want a free flowing, European-style of dining. What’s your favorite thing on the brunch menu? I went to high school about a half mile from the Eden Center in Falls Church, so I was lucky to know great Vietnamese food at a young age. My favorite sandwich is a banh mi, so we make all of our components from scratch Vietnamese-style bologna, cured pork belly, pate and pickled daikon. That’s something that I don’t think you’ll see on too many brunch menus in DC, but I’m trying to Eden Center it out! (laughs) Are you ready for baseball season? We’ve been told that baseball season is a different animal in terms of volume, but we’ll just try to execute things that are delicious and consistent. That’s 98% of the restaurant business game. 

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