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“Energgetic Vibe and Excellent Food”
Review of Jaleo

Jaleo
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Ranked #5 of 365 Restaurants in Bethesda
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $30 - $30
Cuisines: Spanish
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Dining options: Breakfast, Dinner, Late Night, Reservations
Dining style: Casual Dining
Cross street: Elm Street
Transit: We are walking distance from the Bethesda Metro Station on the Red Line.
Northern Virginia
Level 6 Contributor
613 reviews
412 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 287 helpful votes
“Energgetic Vibe and Excellent Food”
Reviewed February 16, 2013

Four of us had dinner at Jaleo in Bethesda. The restaurant was still serving its prix fixe restaurant week menu (which is an all-or-nothing proposition for a party - either everyone does the prix fixe, or no one does). It's a lot of food, even though the tapas plates are individually small, and a great value.

Any time the restaurant can accommodate a party with mixed tastes, including vegetarian, lactose-intolerant and general omnivores, it's a good sign. Even the prix fixe menu had good options for everyone. Standout dishes were the patatas bravas, which were spicy and garlicky, the sauteed spinach, the salmon (which was cooked to a very nice medium rare, rather than overcooked like so many places do) and the garlic shrimp.

The only downside to the dinner was the bread, which was only average. The atmosphere is a bit noisy for a romantic couples thing (which this wasn't), but good for a friends get-together.

  • Visited February 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank luv2travl003
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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529 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
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    192
    78
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    26
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Raleigh, North Carolina
Level 5 Contributor
74 reviews
46 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
“Spanish Tapas done right!”
Reviewed February 9, 2013

Enjoyed a wonderful lunch Jaleo style today! DC restaurant week 4course menu offered great variety to please all in our party. We added traditional Sangria and coffee to round the meal out. Favorites were the butternut squash soup, fried potatoes, salmon with veggies, dates wrapped in bacon and the chocolate mousse. A delicious, leisurely, two hour lunch.

  • Visited February 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank nbdraleigh61
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Washington DC, District of Columbia
Level 6 Contributor
485 reviews
267 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 327 helpful votes
“Excellent Restaurant Week Menu”
Reviewed January 26, 2013

We were pleasantly surprised to be at Jaleo for Bethesda's restaurant week and had a wonderful 5 "course" meal. I started with a wonderful squash soup, followed by several courses of tapas. The crab cakes were exceptional - no breading, just tasty fresh crab with light flavoring. The fried dates wrapped in bacon and peppers filled with goat cheese were excellent. The desert - creme catalana - while not as good as what I've had in Barcelona, was very tasty. While in the past I've always gone to Jaleo in DC just for drinks and tapas, having a full dinner at the Bethesda branch was excellent. I will definitely return.

  • Visited January 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank trvladdict
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bethesda, Maryland
Level 6 Contributor
126 reviews
70 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 80 helpful votes
“Disappointing return visit”
Reviewed January 24, 2013

We decided to return to Bethesda's only tapas restaurant for a date night. Our first two visits had been pretty good to excellent. Although we had reservations, they first tried to put us at a very poor, cramped location. When we asked politely to move to an open window table, we apparently put off the staff, for our waiter showed up only sporadically. Chosen dishes were different than when we had visited previously, and, when one did not match the description on the menu, the waiter told us that sometimes they substituted, or that the kitchen just didn't get it right all the time--hardly the response we would have expected. The bacon-wrapped dates--a dish we had returned for--were over-cooked beyond recognition and tough. We make better ones ourselves. The sangria was watered down and the waiter never returned to ask if we wanted a second. Although the food is usually quite good, we were sorely disappointed this last time, particularly by our neglectful waiter. He was spending quite a bit of time with other customers. In a tapas restaurant, a good waiter weighs heavily in the equation and helps make the whole experience unique. It's especially nice if they offer recommendations. If you go, be careful about asking to switch your table.

  • Visited November 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Maryland54
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Stamford CT
Level 6 Contributor
105 reviews
74 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 41 helpful votes
“Tapas Heaven Without the Harps”
Reviewed January 21, 2013

We were walk-ins into this lovely Bethesda tapas joint, and were mightily pleased with the food and the service. And the ambiance. We shared a half-dozen little dishes, each one tastier than the one before, all sloshed down some good Spanish wine. It's nice to relax in a low-key place, unhurried, and be well served with well-made food. Congrats to all.

  • Visited December 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Bern K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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