No Bull: Jaleo Serves Up Tapas All Over Metroland

Jaleo Restaurant in D.C.

Food & friends: A busy night at Jaleo in Penn Quarter, located at 480 7th St. in Northwest. (Powers and Crewe)

One good thing about renting an apartment in the Washington, D.C., metro area is the staggering amount of food offerings available.

Today, we venture farther down the culinary highway and stop the food truck in Spain. Well, that’s a fib, but we’re giving you next best thing: Jaleo, which has locations in Penn Quarter, Bethesda and Crystal City. (For those heading out West, there’s also one in Las Vegas, Nev.)

With three convenient locations to choose from, there’s no excuse: It’s time to broaden your palate.

Under the direction of José Andrés, who’s apparently quite famous, Jaleo has roots that date back to 1993, when they opened their first restaurant in Washington, D.C. Each “critically-acclaimed” area restaurant generally gets positive marks on Google Places.

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A restaurant featuring Spanish cuisine, Jaleo serves up tapas. You may wonder what Spanish “tapas” are exactly.


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Jaleo Bethesda
7271 Woodmont Ave.,
Bethesda, MD 20814

Tapas are small plates of food: egg, ham, cheese, tomatoes, peppers and onions in all types of tasteful combinations. The restaurant has a very extensive menu detailing the food and ingredients used for breakfast, lunch, dinner and more. At this restaurant, there seems to be many times to eat.

They also serve up paellas, a big rice dish that can serve a whole table.

And what’s food without wine, or in this case wine, sangria, cocktails and beer?

Jaleo is moderately expensive; expect to pay at least $20-$30 per person if you’re having two drinks and a couple of tapas.

[ Related: Penn Quarter's Trendy Asia Nine Bar Caters to a Variety of Tastes ]

Unique to Jaleo are their dinner-and-entertainment package deals.

Jaleo Crystal City has partnered with the Synetic Theater at Crystal City to offer their Dinner & Shakespeare package, where from November 25 to December 23 you can enjoy dinner and a night of “Romeo & Juliet” for $65.


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Jaleo Crystal City
2250A Crystal Dr.
Arlington, VA 22202

It’s suggested that you make reservations at Jaleo, especially when redeeming your online Dinner & Shakespeare voucher the night of the play.

Likewise, Jaleo Bethesda is currently partnering with Landmark Bethesda Row Cinema in offering Dinner and a Movie for $27 (the price says $35 online, but I was told $27 when I called), Sunday-Thursday, from 4:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. Here, you have to buy your movie ticket first and then bring it to the restaurant.

Both locations have a pre-theater menu.

Each restaurant is open every day and has slightly different hours, but they do have one thing in common: They all open at 11:30 a.m.; closing times vary from 9 p.m. to 12 a.m.

Lovers of exotic food should check out one of the three Jaleo restaurants in the D.C. area.