100 Very Best Restaurant 2016: Jaleo

Photograph by Scott Suchman.

We take Jaleo for granted. We do. Chew on this for a second: Jaleo has been around almost a quarter century. And how about this? The small-plates craze that you’ve maybe grown tired of but can’t possibly ignore? Jaleo birthed it. But the Dorian Gray of restaurants is still youthful and lively, with a menu that evolves in exciting ways. If you haven’t been in years, you’ll find an excellent selection of Spanish hams (including Ibérico, the ultimate in depth of flavor), along with several shiny new baubles (among them, a dish of uni with trout roe, a delicious means of conveying the salinity and sweetness of nature’s custard). As for the old standbys, such as garlic shrimp or fried cod fritters? Good as ever.

Don’t miss: Egg with caviar; potatoes with mojo verde; jamón Ibérico-And-Manchego sandwich; chorizo with potatoes; flan; Basque cake.

See what other restaurants made our 100 Very Best Restaurants list. This article appears in our February 2016 issue of Washingtonian.

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Ann Limpert
Executive Food Editor/Critic

Ann Limpert joined Washingtonian in late 2003. She was previously an editorial assistant at Entertainment Weekly and a cook in New York restaurant kitchens, and she is a graduate of the Institute of Culinary Education. She lives in Logan Circle.

Anna Spiegel
Food Editor

Anna Spiegel covers the dining and drinking scene in her native DC. Prior to joining Washingtonian in 2010, she attended the French Culinary Institute and Columbia University’s MFA program in New York, and held various cooking and writing positions in NYC and in St. John, US Virgin Islands.