100 Very Best Restaurants: #10 – Xiquet

Ibérico-pork Wellington. Photograph by Scott Suchman

About Xiquet

cuisines
Spanish

Danny Lledó greets diners at the counter of his Glover Park kitchen with a pour of vermouth and a generous shaving of truffles over grilled flatbread—a hospitable sign of what’s to come. A Takoma Park native with Spanish heritage who spent years in Dénia, Lledó treats his three-story Valencian restaurant like a home. Welcome apéritifs and after-dinner ports are sipped in a salon, while a tasting menu of 20-plus plates unfolds in a minimalist six-table dining room. There are sublime snacks such as barnacles, sweet as lobster, in escabeche; buttery uni brioche bites; and house-aged tuna loin. Extra splurges can delight—say, a single $50 rare Dénia red prawn—but they’re not necessary with showstoppers like a Wellington carved tableside to reveal a center of smoked Ibérico pork tenderloin and truffles. Very expensive.