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Penn Quarter Gets a Spanish Twist

By Caitlin Lane


The popular tapas bar and restaurant makes its way to Penn Quarter
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A hot spot since its opening in Dupont Circle, Spanish tapas bar and restaurant, Boqueria opened a new location in Penn Quarter on March 6th. This new location comes via a collaboration between Yann De Rochefort, owner of six tapas locations around New York City and Washington DC, and Executive Chef Marc Vidal. Rochefort and Vidal wanted to bring the Spanish culture of sharing and spirit of community to the United States and has become the destination for connecting over tapas with all of the important people in your life.

With the success of the Dupont Circle location, Rochefort hopes that the new location will bring a Spanish twist to the area. “Penn Quarter already has a lot of fantastic dining options, cultural and entertainment destinations. We are excited to be a part of that landscape and feel the neighborhood affords a balance of tourists, weekend visitors, workers and neighborhood residents that we hope will support us,” said Rochefort of the new location.

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Boqueria offers traditional Spanish tapas year round as well as a rotating menu of dishes all inspired by authentic Spanish farmers markers and purveyors. The menu embodies the traditional spirit of communal eating including a Paella Feast fit to serve as many as 50 guests and a Cochinillo Feast, a family-style spread. Boqueria’s drink options also pay tribute to Spain’s drinking culture and traditions with signature wine, beers, and cocktails straight out of Spain. Signature SangrĂ­as are served by the glass or a pitcher for the table in three different selections as well as a rotating selection of seasonal offerings.

Spanish culture embeds its way even beyond the food at Boqueria. The design of the restaurant brings together traditional Spanish culture -- embodying the spirit of a casual tapas bar -- with a modern twist -- wood, marble, and soft lighting -- to create an intimate vibe for restaurant goers. Additionally, the open kitchen adds a level of interaction between guests so they are apart of the action throughout their entire dining experience.

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We got an exclusive inside scoop from Vidal himself. He told us that this Boqueria location is “inspired by the spirit of tapas and how they bring people together. As a chef who grew up cooking in my family's restaurant in Barcelona, the menu is very personal to me,” Vidal said. “So many of our vibrant and celebratory dishes bring back memories of home. I'm very excited about our new large format dishes at Penn Quarter [that] are fun, exciting and perfect for sharing with lots of friends."

With the opening of Boqueria in Penn Quarter, it is harder than ever to score an exclusive reservation, but now you’re able to bring Boqueria into your own home. This opening comes alongside the launch of Mark Vidal and Yann de Rochefort’s new cookbook -- Boqueria: A Cookbook, from Barcelona to New York. This cookbook tells the story of Boqueria -- from its beginnings to its major success present day -- alongside recipes straight out of the Boqueria kitchen.

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 “For over a decade, we've brought the energy, atmosphere and flavors of Barcelona to our guests and built an amazing community. The cookbook was a chance to share the story behind the restaurants and give people a chance to create their own Boqueria experiences at home,” said Rochefort of the new cookbook.

With dishes designed to share, Boqueria Penn Quarter is DC’s newest destination for connecting with everyone in your life over an authentic Spanish meal -- straight from Barcelona.

 777 9th St NW, Washington, DC; 202.552.3268;

Photos by Rey Lopez