Jose!!

Jaleo was so good last week that I had to go back yesterday. And look who was there watching soccer and talking to Andrew Zimmerman. This isn’t the first time I’ve seen him there but the first time I decided to be annoying enough to ask for a picture. For the record, the accent is just as cute in person as on TV.

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Jaleo Otra Vez!

We visited the renovated Jaleo this weekend for some brunch tapas before heading to the Woolly Mammoth to see, “Mr. Burns, a Post Electric Play.” It wasn’t good for the wedding diet, but the updated style and menu are very welcome. I think it was the general consensus that that Jaleo had gotten a bit shabby and was sitting on its haunches. I still thought you could get an excellent meal at the bar, but sitting at a table was infuriating unless you liked slow service and cold food.

One of the most exciting changes is the plethora of Iberico pork on the new menu. Most of it is served in sizes that two people shouldn’t even try to attack, but the sliders were delicious, porky and just slightly spicy. Next time though, I take a few more people and order the grilled Iberico ribs!

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The pan cristal con tomate was also excellent and I will be trying to recreate it with some cucumber gazpacho later this week. Warm crunchy bread rubbed with ripe tomatoes and drizzled with with olive oil. So simple, but so delicious.

Pancontomatomate

Other hits included the perennial favorite papas arrugadas (tiny potatoes boiled in water as salty as the sea), bombas (mashed potatoes filled with pork, fried and served with garlic sauce), and some just barely savory olive oil pancakes.

There were a few disappointments though, no more Jaleo Hour and my favorite rice dish from the old brunch menu is gone (http://gigglinggourmand.posterous.com/tag/washingtondc).  Nonetheless, the revised menu is more exciting, the restaurant seems to have taken on a more vibrant air, and the service was steady and congenial … good enough to make me very happy.