Joselito Casa de Comidas lands on Pennsylvania Avenue today, bringing a slice of Old World Spain to Capitol Hill.
The concept, from Spanish native Javier Candon (who also owns SER in Arlington), will roll out tapas to family-style portions in what he describes as an “unpretentious” setting.
The 70-seat intimate eatery pays homage to his late father, José, whose favorite bullfighter was named Joselito el Gallo.
Family pics dating back to the early 1900s adorn the walls, as do vintage posters from Candon’s hometown in Southern Spain. Marble tables and bistro chairs sourced from Spain, perched atop black-and-white Spanish tiling, round out the space.
The centerpiece is a glass-enclosed refrigerator showing off bright vegetables and wines. While the kitchen is small, the menu is lengthy: Meat and fish dishes are aplenty, with options that include grilled Iberian pork shoulder, wagyu bavette, steamed Huelva shrimp, anchovies, and clams.
Orders come in three sizes: tapa (appetizer), media ración (entree) and ración (family style portion). From 4 p.m. to 7 p.m., a Hemingway hour will slash 20 percent off everything.
Guests are encouraged to drink like the Europeans do, with sherry considered acceptable around the clock. The beverage program also features beers, cavas, sangrias, and vermouths from Spain. Some of the dishes are meant to be hangover cures (like a chorizo-infused soup, pictured below).
Monday marks its soft opening (with a 20-percent discount all week). On Thursday, Jan. 12, lunch service will be added.
Status: Certified open at 5:30 p.m.; 660 Pennsylvania Ave. SE; website.