Spain is my favorite country to travel to, in large part because of the Spanish culture. People of all ages hang out with each other all times of day, sitting in cafes or leisurely enjoying tapas from afternoon through the night. I always look for that culture here in D.C. It’s a little harder to find, since the culture here is much more individualistic, but it’s out there. And the Spanish restaurants in D.C., like Estadio, are the best places to find it.
The atmosphere instantly brings me to Barcelona whenever I walk in to Estadio. Chef Ruffino Bautista bases his menus on regions in Northern Spain, including Catalonia and the Basque region. The tables and fixtures are typical Spanish wrought iron and wood, along with mosaic tiles that date back to the 19th century. Perfect lighting for date night, too.
The service is excellent. My friends and I went to have drinks and a few appetizers at the bar, until a server saw us and asked if we preferred a table. We welcomed the suggestion and were able to sit at the window, enjoying a whole dinner and dessert of tapas and unique cocktails.
Go there if you want a Spanish experience right on 14th street, a prime D.C. neighborhood for nightlife and evening strolls.