Clockwise from top left: an iron chandelier and iron detailing, glass porrons, Spaniard hottie Penelope Cruz marks the women's restroom, Spanish tiles, staff tees.
Introducing Spanish pintxos, porrons and ice cold "slushitos" to 14th Street, Estadio will open its doors Tuesday evening.
Translation? Pintxos: addictive little bites like skewered Manchego and chorizo. Porrons: the Spanish wine spouts that will have you pour wine down your shirt at least once, depending on your learning curve. Slushitos: frozen alcoholic concoctions I will be drinking the rest of summer.
Estadio's opening comes almost exactly three years after owner Mark Kuller launched his first restaurant Proof in Penn Quarter. His second venture, this time with a Spanish accent, draws on the same talented team: chef Haidar Karoum, wine director Sebastian Zutant and bar manager Adam Bernbach, as well as a new addition, general manager Justin Guthrie (previously of Central and the W hotel's POV).
After a food-filled research trip to the country this spring, Kuller and Karoum have packed Estadio's menu with Spanish inspiration, offering bite-sized pintxos ($3-$6), traditional tapas ($5-$11) and small entrees ($12-$19).
The choices read like a grazer's dream (that's me) with a host of Spanish snacks — cheeses and meats, toothpicks stacked with anchovies, olives and chorizo, fresh figs stuffed with cheese and wrapped in jamon, small bocadillo sandwiches with blood sausage, and croquetas in mushroom or jamon.
The rustic decor (was this really a garden shop before?!) evokes a timeworn Spanish tapas bar with wrought iron details, rough wood, earthy Spanish tiles and bull fighting murals.
A few more shots from inside Estadio, located at 1520 14th St. NW ...
The communal table may be the perfect place for practicing your porron technique with neighbors.
A slushie machine churns flavors like quince with paprika, sherry and Scotch and strawberry with tarragon, Campari and gin.
Estadio will open for dinner daily at 4 p.m. (Nice excuse to leave work early.) Brunch is slated to start this fall.