Sunday, October 9, 2011

Don't try to say this at home...La Taberna Del Alabardero

 It's always nice to get away and have an adult dinner with adults and adult conversation...I don't think iCarly came up once in conversation!  Cheryl and I met Paul Ward and Angela Potter out for dinner at La Taberna Del Alabardero after the Taste of DC Saturday.  
 Paul and I had been discussing the points that differentiate a good restaurant with longevity from a flashy restaurant that's going to sputter after a year or two, and I keep coming back to cleanliness.  Look at this kitchen!  It looks like today was the first day anyone had cooked in it, but this restaurant has been open for many years.  You would be proud to eat in this kitchen.
We started out with some Iberico Jamon....Thank you Jose Andres for lobbying the FDA to allow this into the country.   The neat thing about this particular ham is that the fat renders at body temperature.  As soon as you touch it, it softens and glistens...mmm.   Just FYI, I'm not sure how much of what you see here is on the menu or not.  We put ourselves at the mercy of the Sous Chef, David, and did not order anything specifically save for dessert.
 Fried sardines with a small green salad, perfectly dressed.  Yes, you eat the whole thing.  Yummy.
 Gambas... or shrimp as we call them.  Swimming in a dish of garlic and olive oil.  I spooned some of this over their excellent, crusty bread. 
 These were perfectly fried ham croquettes.  Very well executed.
 This is roasted oxtail stuffed into a pepper...the name of the pepper escapes me, but it was flavorful without being hot.
 This is the Paella.  The meat was braised pork cheeks.  The rise was so good I had to ask if they had made it with Risotto.  Unreal.

This is the roasted suckling pig.  Very nicely done.  It was reminiscent of layers of pulled pork topped with a very crispy skin.
 The lamb was very tasty.  My dining companions got one that was mid-rare and one that was well done, unfortunately.
  Cheryl's, however, was consistent.

 From left clockwise:  Paul, Angela, Cheryl, and your's truly.
 Chocolate an pistachio something....by this time I was done....I had a bite just because I had to.

And to end, I say:  Hasta la vista...if you happen to be downtown and want something Spanish done tastefully, with restraint and class, stop in to Taberna Del Alabardero.  You won't be disappointed.
Tell them where you read about it! Taberna Del Alabardero on Urbanspoon
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