Editors' pick

Taberna del Alabardero

Spanish, Tapas
$$$$ ($25-$34)
Taberna del Alabardero photo
Sean McCormick
Taberna del Alabardero serves Old World Spanish selections in an atmosphere that's "muy" proper.
Mon-Fri 11:30 am-2:30 pm
5:30-10:30 pm; Sat 5:30-10:30 pm
Farragut West (Blue and Orange lines)
65 decibels (Conversation is easy)

Editorial Review

2007 Fall Dining Guide
By Tom Sietsema
Washington Post Magazine
Sunday, Oct. 14, 2007

Almost everything about this grandly formal restaurant makes me feel like I'm in Spain for a meal. A shot of gazpacho, cool and refreshing, and skewered chorizo, hot and zesty, serve as my amuse-bouche. The room, one of the city's most romantic, is a vision in red with its lace-backed banquettes, thick carpet and deep chairs. My neighbors are all conversing in Spanish, and the food that flows from the kitchen -- creamy rice swirled with mushrooms and snails, a slab of rockfish scattered with bronzed garlic and garnished with scarlet peppers and cubed potatoes -- brings to mind past restaurant tours of Madrid and Barcelona. Much as I enjoy pulling out the stops here -- and the dashing sommelier, David Bueno, can help you do that -- I head for the intimate tapas bar when money or time is short (go for the ham croquettes and marinated seafood). The lone false note? If I were really in Spain, I'd be the only person eating dinner at 8 o'clock in the evening, and this place is buzzing.