Jaleo - Bethesda

4.5
3147 reviews
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$30 and under
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Spanish
Jaleo brings alive the spirit and flavors of Spain with a menu reflecting the rich regional diversity of classical and contemporary Spanish cuisine, under the direction of renowned chef José Andrés. Jaleo offers an impressive assortment of tapas, the traditional small dishes of Spain, as well as savory paellas, superb sangrias and a fine selection of Spanish wines and Sherries in a festive, casual atmosphere.
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What 3147 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.5based on recent ratings
4.6
food
4.4
service
4.3
ambience
4.1
value
Noise · Moderate
90% of people would recommend it to a friend
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T
Baltimore
1 review
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 2food 2service 5ambience 4

We really expected an authentic Spanish meal especially with getting the Jaleo traditional experience, but despite expensive options, most plates were subpar and lacked the spices we were expecting. The service was amazing and the wait staff we're excellent, but it did not equal the cost of what was essentially boxed mashed potatoes and drug store taquitos in between the oysters and higher end dishes that were good.

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S
1 review
Dined 5 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Jaleo, what a great place and a great way to start an exceptional weekend. I am thrilled to let everyone know how much the combination of delicious food and high class service contribute the success of an evening birthday surprise celebration. There is only one way to ensure the truthfulness of this statement: Go see for yourself.

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OT
Washington DC
2 reviews
Dined 5 days ago
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 4

We were promptly seated and they accommodated my request to change the seating.
Everything that comes out of the kitchen is exceptional, be it the different tapas or the Sangria. It gives you a sense of food in Spain.
No complaints.

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OT
Houston
3 reviews
Dined on May 12, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Great meal. We had the classic tasting menu, would definitely recommend it.

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A
Charleston
2 reviews
Dined on May 12, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Went to Jaleo with my parents for Mother's day. The food was incredibly delicious and versatile. My parents generally hate Tapas style food but the portions for Tapas were quite big and we had a great time. Would absolutely go back.

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HN
1 review
Dined on May 12, 2019
Overall 1food 5service 1ambience 3

I took my wife to Jaleo on Mother’s Day to get away from our normal scene. Being a restaurant owned by Jose Andrés, I expected much more from this place. The food was good, but cold (steak frites, potatoes, etc). I can still overlook the food temp, but I could not overlook the rude and passive aggressive manner in which the hostess approached us about our car seat (which my child was sleeping in).

For the record, our server was great. The hostess kept asking us, “Can I help you in any way with that stroller? Can I check it for you? Is there a better place for it?”. I came here for dinner, not to be hounded about my stroller taking up a slight/partial section of the table next to us, which had not been occupied for the 45 mins we had already been there.

Food for thought, hire people you are proud have represent your name and your restaurant. I can get tapas anywhere, but there is obviously a reason I chose Jaleo. I hope you use this review as an educational piece. Yes, it’s cheap to hire young hosts and greeters, but ultimately costly in the long run. Make sure the individual is mature enough to handle a respectful conversation. You’re not paying me to eat at your restaurant...

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TS
Dallas
7 reviews
Dined on May 12, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

My kids love the chicken fritters , chorizo and the hamburger . We love the flan even took home one . The only downfall was the paella with chicken and mushrooms, my kids said they got more mushrooms than chicken . Otherwise we still going go back

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MD
Washington DC
60 reviews
Dined on May 12, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

This was our first time to have brunch at Jaleo', and certainly won't be our last. It was wonderful! We ordered the brunch tasting menu and had fantastic and varied dishes. Highly recommend.

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RS
New York Area
1 review
Dined on May 11, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 2ambience 3

Lots of interesting dishes. Too many too try in one sitting so will have to come back! The service a bit too eager in that dishes and glasses kept disappearing before the last tasty mouthful was removed! Try the sauted spinach with pine nuts and raisins - quite delicious. Thanks!

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FB
Washington DC
4 reviews
Dined on May 11, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We went here to celebrate my sons confirmation and had a great time! The server, Dahir, was most accommodating with our larger party. He recommended great dishes while allowing us still time to talk with each other. The croquettes were exceptionally good and the large paella we ordered was delicious.

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B
New England
59 reviews
Dined on May 11, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

Awesome dining experience. Great food and service. Will come back if ever in the area.

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RK
Washington DC
2 reviews
Dined on May 8, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Had not been here in years. Went back for a reunion with coworkers after 20 years. The amazing host gave us a somewhat private table. The margaritas were fresh, hangar steak was perfectly done. Will definitely be back soon.

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MS
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on May 5, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

Great dinner - our server was quite nice

Bring back the rice pudding would be our only suggestion

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L
Washington DC
20 reviews
Dined on May 4, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 3

It was a Friday night and the place was very busy. The service was extremely slow - slower than we’d ever experienced. Our server was competent and experienced, but we waited almost an hour for some of our dishes to come from the kitchen. The sangria is usually delicious, but the special sangria -rosé sangria- was unbearably sweet. The wine was fine, though. The potato and mushroom dish was delicious except for the mushroom stems which were so tough they could not be cut or chewed. The drunken goat cheese was OK, but was served with a tiny sliver of one cracker. Were you actually expected to eat it with bread? The hangar steak was cool - had been sitting for a while waiting to be served. Not our best evening at Jaleo.

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HS
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on April 29, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Not crowded during a late lunch--so much quieter than for an evening meal but the food is just as good. Ate too much!!

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F
Washington DC
9 reviews
Dined on April 28, 2019
Overall 2food 1service 4ambience 2

I had not been to Jaleo in Bethesda in a long time. What a disappointment. The service was very good but the food mediocre and not worth the prices they charge. It is definitely not what one would expect from a Jose Andres restaurant. I will not dine there again and will not recommend it.

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c
Baltimore
9 reviews
Dined on April 26, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We had a great time at Jaleo as always!! We were celebrating our son’s birthday and his getting into graduate school and our waitress was great! Our party of six really enjoyed everything and we had two vegetarians in the group and the choices worked perfectly.

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CF
Seattle
1 review
Dined on April 25, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I will be back again and again for all levels on this restaurant --outstanding service, unbeatable food, passion for justice and care of the broader community in so many dimensions. Plus, the menu seems to always be changing so there are always great things to try!

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GF
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on April 25, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

First time at Jaleo in Bethesda. There was no noticeable drop in quality from the location in downtown D.C.

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OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined on April 23, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

Great food and very nice atmosphere

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L
Washington DC
24 reviews
Dined on April 21, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Husband and I live nearby and go for casual dinner alone or with friends. Service is pleasant, greeters listen to requests more than a lot of other places and try to accommodate.
Food is good and we can find some light options, though My only suggestion would be more light choices.

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VB
Washington DC
6 reviews
Dined on April 21, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Always great! I really enjoyed the updated recipe to the gazpacho an really enjoyed the squid with the rice and squid ink.

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DM
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on April 21, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We enjoyed a great Tasting Brunch at Jaleo's on a Sunday morning. The server was attentive and explained each dish he brought out. Delicious food and sangria!

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OT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on April 20, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Whenever our sister in law comes to town, she takes us out to dinner and we always choose Jaleo. Great food and wine and conversation! Thank you!!

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R
Washington DC
13 reviews
Dined on April 19, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Consistently excellent!

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OT
Washington DC
27 reviews
Dined on April 17, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I would recommend ordering the apple and fennel salad, the duck, the patatas bravas, and a Mexican Coke.

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p
Baltimore
4 reviews
Dined on April 17, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 5ambience 4

Good chain. Not representative of high end cooking of Jose Andres though. Overall, good place for a cocktail and snacks.

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A
Washington DC
110 reviews
Dined on April 17, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

Excellent food! Three-course lunch was great and enabled two of us to share so many wonderful tastes!

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P
Washington DC
29 reviews
Dined on April 16, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Very nice for a lunch get together. The $16 lunch special with 3 courses is a fantastic value.

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M
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on April 13, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

We went for my friend’s birthday and had a reservation at 8 PM. We came a few minutes early and were immediately seated and served bread. Notified the server someone had a shellfish allergy and was given the allergy menu. Everything was delicious, will definitely recommend!

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NR
1 review
Dined on April 13, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 2ambience 3

Food was good, drinks were delicious, and bartender was very nice. Once we sat down for our reservation though the service was sub par. Server would come once every 30 minutes to our table, and sometimes she would forget things so I sat without water for about an hour. The paella was horrendous and it cost $55 – the flavor was muddy and the shrimp disintegrated in my mouth so it wasn't fresh seafood. I would go back only for drinks and light tapas in the bar.

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f
Washington DC
27 reviews
Dined on April 13, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 3

Went to the Jaleo in Bethesda and as usual everything was excellent. Went before attending a movie around the corner and the service was prompt getting us out in a timely manner. From the food (especially the Fisherman's soup that my wife had) to the service which was attentive without being intrusive. Will be coming back!!!!!

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S
1 review
Dined on April 12, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent food, menu selection and beverage selection. Server was outstanding!

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TB
Washington DC
10 reviews
Dined on April 12, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 3

Sorry, but much better restaurants for the same price. Poor quality/fatty cuts of lamb/meat, veggies and fruit accoutrements not fresh.

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M
Washington DC
47 reviews
Dined on April 10, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Loved the Cherry Blossom specials.

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RS
1 review
Dined on April 6, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 5ambience 4

We went with friends craving a paella valenciana and on a Saturday night they didn’t have it then we went to ur second option, paella with costillas and they did not have it either so we ended up ordering something else because we were already there but kind of disappointing. Service was good and ambiance great as usual.

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J
Washington DC
22 reviews
Dined on April 6, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 3

Always a good option, especially for foodies. Music is a little too loud. Our seat was near the door, so got a cold blast with every door opening. Food very good. Broad menu, something for everyone. Service good. Value very good.

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OT
1 review
Dined on April 6, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 3ambience 2

The occasion.
We selected Jaleo to celebrate a family member’s birthday.

The ambiance.
We were placed at the table in front of the patio exit. This particular area, because of air pressure on inside/outside, was a glorified wind tunnel. Every time a patron or server entered or exited, we would be hit with a gust of wind and the door would slam loudly. We did ask that the servers try to be careful when closing the door and the slamming did stop. The wind tunnel remained and was a distraction.

The food.
We ordered the chef special. The first three plates were great. But at/after the fourth plate the ideas started to feel forced and the food/flavor combinations didn’t taste very special - just okay. By the time the last few plates were set to come to the table, we were over it. We requested the final plates be boxed and we headed home for the evening.

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KB
Portland
12 reviews
Dined on April 5, 2019
Overall 2food 2service 3ambience 2

For the first time EVER, I didn’t enjoy eating Jaleo. I’ve been to all three locations and usually this is a five star restaurant, so I don’t know if it was an off night or what, but the whole experience was pretty close to terrible.

When we walked it in, there was...a smell. I thought it smelled like bad fish. My husband thought it smelled like sewage. Whatever it was, it was not good, to the point where we didn’t know if we should leave because if hygene concerns. Because our friends were on the way and it was too late to find a new location, we stayed.

Then there was the food. It’s usually delicious. I ordered our favorite, Patatas Bravas, and when they came they were so over cooked that we had to wrestled our forks into them. The mushrooms were under seasoned and watery. The shrimp were cooked to crisp. The cheese was dry (how do you mess up cheese???).

Despite the fact that we were there before the rush, our server seemed harried and fed up. She was impatient with us and with the support staff. It took a really long time to get our check (though to be fair, it got incredibly busy).

The restaurant felt loud and crowded, more so than usual. It made it hard to hear our guests.

Speaking of our guests, we’d invited them to Jaleo specifically because they are new to the area and love tapas, and we hyped Jaleo up. They were too polite to say anything, but that’s the rub: they didn’t say anything. Usually people RAVE about this place. When your guests are just awkwardly silent and no one wants to eat the last bites on the plate, it’s a disaster.

So I don’t know what was going on, but the whole experience was a bust.

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BH
1 review
Dined on April 4, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

It was my first time to Jaleo Bethesda in probably a year. Service, atmosphere, and food were all top notch, as I remembered from previous visits.

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