I am a huge fan of Spanish Tapas since discovering this cuisine in my 20’s in Chicago. Therefore, I couldn’t possibly pass up trying Jaleo at Disney Springs. My reservation was for lunch during the middle of the week so the crowds were a bit less.
For those of you not familiar with Tapas, the plates are designed to be shared with others at the table. Savory paellas, superb sangria, Spanish cheeses, wines and sherries are just a few of the delicious Spanish dishes and drinks you will enjoy with Tapas.
Per Jaleo’s website: Jaleo at Disney Springs®, is located in a one-of-a-kind retail, dining and entertainment district located in the heart of Walt Disney World Resort in Lake Buena Vista, Florida. This Jaleo is the biggest and most spectacular location yet, housed in a dynamic, multi-level space. The menu features an extensive variety of tapas reflecting the rich regional diversity of traditional and contemporary Spanish cuisine in addition to a variety of authentic paellas cooked over a wood fire in the restaurant.
Jaleo was created by Jose Andres, an internationally recognized chef and holder of two Michelin stars. So, I pretty much assumed this was going to be a delish meal and I was not disappointed.
This was my first time visiting Jaleo so I stuck with the dishes that I knew and loved. Here’s what I tried:
Is it possible to eat tapas and not get Sangria? I didn’t think so. The hardest decision here is deciding between the white sangria or red sangria. I opted for the red sangria.
Pan con Tomate
Toasted slices of crispy bread brushed with fresh tomato. My first dish was the Pan con Tomate topped with manchego. This bread is brushed with tomato and extra virgin olive oil and topped with a slice of manchego. I could have eaten this by itself and been perfectly content. Simple. Flavorful. Wonderful.
A plate of fried potatoes with spicy tomato sauce and aioli. These cripy on the outside, soft in the middle potatoes sit atop a spicy tomato sauce dotted with a garlic flavored aioli. Again, it can be a bit spicy but this is a must try at Jaleo. (If you do not like too much spice, you can always ask for the sauce on the side.)
Gambas al ajillo
The very famous tapa of shrimp sautéed with garlic. Such a simple dish packed with intense flavor. Shrimp are cooked and served in a rich, garlic flavored olive oil sprinkled with a pinch of red pepper flakes and parsley. The best part of this dish is dunking a piece of crusty bread into the sauce. Order this one and enjoy.
A classic Spanish custard with ‘espuma’ of Catalan cream and oranges. An elegant Spanish dessert that is not to be missed, if you have any room left.
I thoroughly enjoyed my visit to Jaleo. There are so many different menu items that I want to try and I am certain that I will go back soon to enjoy more.