SER

4.4
817 reviews
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$30 and under
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Spanish
SER is the winner of the Ballston Business Improvement District's 2014 Restaurant Challenge. It is an authentic Spanish tavern or “food house” with a casual, hipster vibe. But, take note…it’s not a tapas restaurant. It’s a gastronomical journey and cultural adventure throughout every region of Spain. It’s an easy-going gathering spot where guests can enjoy typical comfort foods and beverages from Spain at any time of the day or night. The team at SER are your foodie friends from Spain who have a mean kitchen, sharp cooking skills, and comfortable house where you hang out until the wee hours of the night.

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Mon - Fri 5:00PM - 5:45PM

What 817 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.4based on recent ratings
4.4
food
4.5
service
4.3
ambience
4.1
value
Noise · Moderate
92% of people would recommend it to a friend
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OT
Washington DC
11 reviews
Dined 2 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We have eaten here four times now and every time we have been greeted by friendly staff who are very welcoming. The meals are beautifully cooked and presented. The Wagyu steak cooked to perfection. Service was impeccable. Can't wait to have it again.

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JC
1 review
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

There was a group of 6 of us that went. Food was very good. Each of us really liked what we chose. The fried green tomatoes were the best I've ever tasted. Serve was friendly and helpful. I'd highly recommend it.

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OT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined 5 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Friendly staff. Good food.

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OT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Wonderful experience. Food was delicious. Paella is a sure thing. Sangria was delicious too, but prefer the fruit loose and not frozen in one block.

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TB
Washington DC
22 reviews
Dined on February 15, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We ordered the Valentine's day menu with the wine pairing and we were not disappointed. I rarely write reviews of my meals, but the second plate, a fish I had not heard of before: lubina, served with a very delicate tomato sauce was so delicious that I will go back just to have it again; however, it is not in their regular menu so I'll wait and monitor the specials from now on. That was not all, the duck leg, which was served next, was heavenly. You did not need a knife for it, the meat just came off it by gently prodding it with the fork, and the flavor was so delicately 'orangy' and with the exact amount of spice that I will also be on the lookout for the next time they offer it. The wines were excellent, specially a La Luna that went like it was meant to have it with the fish. I have always thought that SER's service is excellent, which was corroborated once again.

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MJ
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on February 15, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 3ambience 4

We went on valentines day and had an enjoyable dinner with our family. A dude came out with a pig leg in some kind of BDSM style torture device and cut us off a piece. Metal as f@#&. Then a man showed up with a fish buried in salt. He dug the motherf**ker out with a damn spoon. No doubt I will hire him to dig my own grave. Food was delicious. Would go again.

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m
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on February 14, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

Fried green tomatoes are so good - great salad, fish etc

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OT
1 review
Dined on February 13, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great customer service great food and overall experience

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c
Washington DC
3 reviews
Dined on February 12, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Outstanding

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c
Washington DC
4 reviews
Dined on February 11, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Simply Amazing. The General Manager Is Warm & Very Kind.

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OT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on February 9, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Very nice place, wonderful food and excellent service.
Our waiter recommendations was great.

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OT
Washington DC
9 reviews
Dined on February 9, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

The food was outstanding, service was great, and the ambience was perfect. Can’t wait to return.

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BE
Washington DC
36 reviews
Dined on February 2, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We'd driven past SER numerous times before eating there this weekend. We were very pleased. The menu was different than most other places, including Jaleo and the other tapas places. The wait staff was very attentive and able to explain the menu and various options. The food was excellent. I had the tuna belly special which was moist, tasty and filling. My guest had the short ribs which she loved. Very enjoyable experience.

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OT
Washington DC
14 reviews
Dined on February 1, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Took kids out for a nice Friday night meal and introduced them to Spanish cuisine. Staff was amazing and kids loved it.

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BS
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on January 29, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Five of us got together recently at SER for a reunion of old friends. My wife and I had been to SER before and are regular customers at SER's companion restaurant, Joselito's on Capitol Hill where we live. Joselito's is a tapas format. We love both and highly recommend them.

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DB
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on January 27, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Had a great restaurant week lunch. Although we didn’t have any participants, we were extremely impressed with the kids cooking class that was going on while we were there!

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AT
Washington DC
4 reviews
Dined on January 27, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 4

We thoroughly enjoyed our experience at SER. The food was good and the service was outstanding. Our server was attentive and knowledgeable. My partner was obviously not enjoying his food. The manager noticed and immediately inquired. Even though my partner didn't ask and still claimed to enjoy the dish, the manager insisted on bringing him another entrée. He very much wanted us to enjoy the meal. The second entrée was a hit. I was very appreciative of their willingness to make sure their customers were well-taken care of. We will definitely be back again.

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OT
Washington DC
20 reviews
Dined on January 27, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We dine at SER a couple of times a year. We decided to go for Restaurant Week (which would make the decision making easier--their regular menu has so much to choose from)! My spouse and I each chose three separate dishes: I had the tuna and potato stew, the pork tenderloin on collard greens, and a chocolate mousse dessert; she had the winter citrus salad, the hangar steak with brussels sprouts and goat cheese foam, and the chocolate shortbread with fruit for dessert. We asked our server, Olja, for wine recommendations and she spoke knowingly and descriptively and made recommendations that matched both our tastes and our meal. The food was excellent--flavorful and interesting, perfectly prepared and presented (which is the high bar we've come to expect at SER). We paid our compliments to the manager, including our appreciation of our server; he then informed us it was her first night there! (We later confirmed this with her.) We would never have guessed it was her first night--she was obviously knowledgeable about the menu and wines, provided that wonderful balance of being attentive without being intrusive. This doesn't happen by accident: It's what happens when you find good people and spend the time to provide training. Wonderful food and excellent service--it still exists and you can find it at SER!

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TR
Washington DC
23 reviews
Dined on January 25, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Restaurant Week was a great time to have our first experience at SER.
Service was smooth during busy dinner time. All the dishes were delicious unique in presentation. They even offer craft cocktails.

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F
Washington DC
6 reviews
Dined on January 25, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Food is very good, service was really outstanding!

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DS
Washington DC
6 reviews
Dined on January 20, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

Very nice neighborhood restaurant. Food was good, I had the restaurant week menu, sopa de tomate, hanger steak and flan, all were delicious, restaurant serves avazza coffee which was delicious. I gave only four stars because of the tortilla, husband ordered from the brunch menu and this was not what we expected. The dish was a sandwich and the tortilla was nothing close to what we have had before. Overall though it was a goid experience and we would come back.

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SS
1 review
Dined on January 19, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

The service was excellent, the food delicious! We brought our daughter who is 10, and she loved the food.

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CM
Richmond
6 reviews
Dined on January 19, 2019
Overall 1food 1service 2ambience 3

My major take away from this experience is that a restaurant shouldn't take reservations during times when they are not serving the whole menu.

SER seems to only serve food from their happy hour menu between 3p-5p. My reservation was at 3:45p so of course I was confused especially since I was given the Restaurant WeeK menu but was told I couldn't order from it until 5. We ending up ordering some tapas but the waitress never put in the order after waiting for about 15 minutes we left.

I'm sure this place is very delightful to be at during their meal times.

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TB
Washington DC
4 reviews
Dined on January 19, 2019
Overall 1food 1service 5ambience 5

Not a great meal, everything was over cooked, bland or cold. Great service though!

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MT
1 review
Dined on January 18, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

We took advantage of Restaurant Week to try out this place for lunch. It was very nice and the selections for the week were good. I don't know if the selections were the same for dinner, but if it was, then I would have expected more. All our choices were good (tomato soup, tuna stew, red snapper, hangar steak, flan, and churro), however, the tuna stew had too many potatoes that made up for the space on the bowl.

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OT
Washington DC
3 reviews
Dined on January 16, 2019
Overall 2food 1service 4ambience 4

Nice service, pretty restaurant in general. Food was mediocre to bad, over priced and I won’t be going again. Went for DC Restaurant week and was pretty disappointed.

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MC
Washington DC
7 reviews
Dined on January 16, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Delicious food, and good service.

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JJ
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on January 15, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 3ambience 3

We had read a little about Ser before going. It was the evening of the snow day and we trekked overland in boots to get to this centrally located must-visit Spanish food emporium. Must say the food was way better than I expected. Service and ambiance need some attention, but the kitchen has it right.

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c
Washington DC
25 reviews
Dined on January 15, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 2ambience 2

We enjoy tapas very much and have been to most of the local Spanish fare restaurants in DC and NoVA. I was disappointed with SER, with both the food, the ambiance, the wine list, and the service. It was all just okay, nothing special. Not a place I will think of when I want Tapas. What a shame.

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OT
Washington DC
143 reviews
Dined on January 14, 2019
Overall 2food 1service 3ambience 2

Granted I went on a snow day, but there were only 5 people in the whole place besides me. The ambience is kind of meh -- just a big open room with nothing particularly interesting as far as decor. I ordered the tuna and potato appetizer -- disappointing: three small cubes of overcooked tuna with a bunch of potatoes and peppers. Skimpy and way overpriced. Entree -- pork tenderloin served over collard greens: epic fail! I had two bites and they obviously forgot to wash the collard greens - it was like chewing sand. To top it off, I bit down on a tooth-sized bone! At first I thought it was a rock, but when I sent the dish back, the server returned to tell me it wasn't a rock but a piece of bone from the ham hock the chef used to cook the (unwashed) collard greens. Second try on entree: hangar steak: pretty good. Cooked perfectly but drowning in whatever "goat cheese foam" is. The chocolate mousse itself was good, especially with the orange marmalade-type schmears accompanying it. However, the raspberries, baby marshmallows and rice krispies were overkill and add nothing but annoyance to the dessert.
Customer service gets a star because they did comp my meal (which, of course, they SHOULD HAVE due to the bone and sand entree problems). Although the service was good, I probably won't go back.

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OT
Washington DC
161 reviews
Dined on January 11, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great soups to start. Small plates delicious and authentic. Great service. Best restaurant in Ballston and Clarendon area.

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DL
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on January 10, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Our server was very friendly and personable; recommended a few dishes to us that we absolutely loved.

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C
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on January 10, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

Great happy hour prices for tapas and drinks. Great for special occasions.

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S
Washington DC
11 reviews
Dined on January 4, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent service and food at reasonable prices. Our favorite restaurant in Arlington VA.

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l
Washington DC
35 reviews
Dined on January 4, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 3

This was my first time for lunch at this restaurant. I was taking a friend out for her birthday and she loves Spanish food so she suggested this venue. We enjoyed the BLT and the grilled cheese/bacon, fries and wine. I had indicated on the reservation that we were celebrating a birthday and without any prompting the waitress brought us a complimentary dessert to share.
Our only problem was parking validation. I will take this up with the restaurant and report back..

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GD
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on January 1, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great food! Creative menu and dishes. Super and friendly service. Great staff.

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OT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on December 29, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Friends reunion

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OT
Washington DC
161 reviews
Dined on December 28, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Popped in for quick bite with our son. New salt-baked sea bream is a must have. Always at the top of our list when choosing a place to go locally in Arlington. Ana is an outstanding server.

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EO
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on December 21, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Service it top notch. Food authentic and delicious.

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S
Washington DC
15 reviews
Dined on December 18, 2018
Overall 4food 3service 5ambience 5

We are neighbors and have always loved SER. However, our last two dinners have been
extremely salty, so until that is fixed we probably won't return. Love the wine, service, atmosphere,
and place, but the food is suffering from an overly zealous chef.

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