Taberna Del Alabardero: Where Brunch Transports You to Spain

When you enter Taberna Del Alabardero at 1776 I Street in Northwest, DC you are instantly transported. Picture yourself dining in a classic restaurant in Spain, and this is what you are likely to experience.  You can feel the vibe through resplendent crimson red walls adorned with Spanish art, tiles, and tapestry.  Gold chandeliers and wall sconces further accentuate the lively yet somewhat formal atmosphere.  Visit the restaurant for their new brunch, and live music will amplify the perception that you are far from the nation’s capital.

Taberna del Alaberdero opened in 1989.  The décor has remained largely intact, and even some of the staff have been there since the beginning.  While some elements of the restaurant are unchanged, the brunch is updated, and is well worth exploring.

There are three options including a la carte, a three-course brunch, and Spanish brunch.  Go for the Spanish brunch for $60 (the whole table must participate).  It includes two tapas, paella, dessert, a brunch cocktail, and coffee.  It’s a great value considering the variety and quality, not to mention the benefits of a faux-vacation.

Mandatory on my tapas table is patatas bravas.  I’m not tapas-fulfilled without this Spanish staple of fried potatoes with spicy mayo.  We pair the dish with baby squid in black ink sauce with rice, anchovies in vinegar with olives, and grilled octopus with potatoes and paprika.

If this sounds fishy, the tapas menu also includes a traditional tortilla de patata espanola (potato omelette), as well as Iberian ham croquettes, and pork tenderloin with baby potatoes.

Spaniards have been eating paella since the mid-19th century, and Taberna del Alaberdero takes pride in its renditions of the dish. We select paella with shrimp, mussels, and squid. Lobster is an option for an additional $16 per person. The flavorful paella, with its generous ratio of seafood to rice, is served with flair and a warm smile from the server.

Tapas, paella, and dessert is more than enough food, but for those who want to extend the experiential authenticity, consider adding charcuterie or a sensational cheese plate.

It’s a good thing that dessert is included in the Spanish brunch, because you may consider skipping it after consuming all the food that precedes it. You would be missing out. Tocino de cielo is egg yolk custard served with caramel, berries, and a tart dollop of lemon gelato.  Crisp churros served with chocolate also make a fitting finale.


Taberna Del Alabardero is part of Grupo Lezama, which has operated in Spain since 1974 and includes restaurants in Madrid, Marbella, Seville, Malaga, and Basque Country. If you close your eyes, you can imagine you’ve embarked on a visit to this southern European country.  I can’t think of a more satisfying way to spend a Sunday in DC.


Taberna Del Alabardero1776 I St. NW., Washington, DC (Sunday brunch from 10:30 am until 2:30 pm:)

*Been There, Eaten That was a guest of the restaurant for this brunch.

Taberna Del Alabardero Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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