There is a new Spanish restaurant on Capitol Hill with the original title of, "Joselito; Casa de Comidas". It is a sparse, airy space with simple marble tables and first hand view of Pennsylvania Ave. The owner is Javier Candon who also owns SER Restaurant in Arlington. The concept is a menu of Spanish staples served in a nouveau cuisine style. Spain's rich culinary scene has given way to a great many modern variations of typical Spanish food. At Joselito there are Sardines in a frothy cream sauce and 'boquerones en vinagre' (small sardines in vinegar) covered in a tapenade which includes mushrooms and olives. We also tasted a very modern version of 'huevos rotos' (broken eggs) served in Spain with french fries, here with grilled baby shrimp.
The basics are pretty good. the smoked Iberian ham ("Jamon de Bellota") shaved thin and served with bread sticks was exquisite and the lamb chops in a wine sauce were superb (albeit a bit overpriced). The new space, less than one block from Eastern Market, just opened a few weeks ago and promises to be a very popular Capitol Hill destination. We enjoyed the wait staff although were well aware that, having just opened, there are still kinks to be worked out. We ordered from the extensive tapa menu and wanted to save the lamb for last and yet it was served the other way around. We had to ask them to keep the lamb waiting. The fresh vegetable tapa of raw asparagus, cauliflower and squash came with a green sauce that had very little taste, would have been better without it.
Nevertheless, it was quite a culinary experience and adds to the variety of top quality, first class dining choices for Spanish restaurants in DC. We wish "Joselito..." well and promise to return for another meal. Look them up at www.joselitodc.com.