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Last night at Taberna del Alabardero

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Last night at Taberna del Alabardero

mrspvr | Sep 7, 2007 09:47 AM

Husband's birthday

The good:
-Service was friendly
-Appetizers: A fried sort of crepe with crab, asparagus and spinach. This was the definate highlight of the food. The other app was a Cheese dish with a tasty goat of some kind (although when I asked the server what it was it because I couldn't remember what the menu said, he came back about 20 minutes later with the answer, "It's goat cheese." ) It was covered with roasted crushed peanuts and warm. Also on the plate was a tempora battered Tittia.
-The rice in the Paella. It was cooked and seasoned perfectly.
-The decor. Not as intimate as it looked by the pictures on the internet but still an attractively decorated space.
-The wine. Had a delicious Mencia.
-They did the thing where they write "Happy Birthday So and So" on the dessert plate in chocolate sauce for my husband.
-Less expensive than I thought it would be. 2 apps, entree for two (that's how they handle the paella) 2 desserts, 2 glasses of Cava, 1 glass of port, 1 $65 bottle of wine (that I'm sure retails for about $20 or $25), still water, Check was just over $200. with the tax in that number.

The bad:
-Service. The word my husband came up with works best..."Discombobulated". No one knew what the last person who was at our table had done. There was no communication between staff. The staff was also not educated well enough to answer some of the simplest questions. It was 8:30pm and our main server had no idea what the fish of the day was, the aforementioned goat cheese conversation, etc.. Also when we sat down we received two nice little dishes. One had 2 Spanish sausage pieces for us to each try one and another had some olives. I'd had one olive and the server whisked the dish away because he needed to fit something else on the table. It went like that for the night. I felt like things were being picked up just a little bit before they should be and no one gave you chance to protest.
-The meats in the Paella. There was chicken, duck and rabbit in ours. They were tough and completely tasteless. This meant that my dinner entree consisted basically of really well done Spanish rice.
-The desserts. One was just okay; the drunken bannana. The other was not okay. We tried the Cabrales Ice Cream. I ate more of it than my husband did trying to understand it better and find something I liked about it. He was not in the mood to keep trying and decided immediately that Cabrales ice cream was a very bad idea and they probably shouldn't have it on the menu. Theory=good, Actual product=Bad...very bad.

Not exactly a glowing report, eh? We had a good time but for all the reviews and accolades I've read/heard about this place I can't say I'm impressed. I even read something that claimed this was named the best Spanish restaurant in the country.

Definately the most forgettable high end dining experience I've had since moving to Washington two years ago.

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