Cranes Spanish Kaiseki

Cranes Spanish Kaiseki

I am not a foodie – let me be clear about that. Don’t get me wrong, I like good food and I enjoy trying new and different types of food. But I am terrible about grasping the nuances of individual flavors and ingredients, and knowing all the techniques that differentiates one plate versus the next. However, food is a huge component of traveling and understanding the culture of the area, and well, we all have to eat!

One place that looked interesting was Cranes, a Spanish and Japanese fusion restaurant located less than 2 miles from the National Mall, and just a couple of blocks away from the Capital One arena. If you’re traveling by Metro, it’s right around the corner from the Gallery Place-Chinatown stop.

They also recently earned a one Michelin star, which I have to admit, is the reason why we dined here.

Cranes DC restaurant

For being a Michelin starred restaurant, Cranes is reasonably priced. Their tapas range from $3 – $18, while their entrees (which is meant to be shared), ranges from $9 – $36. For dinner, they have a Prix Fixe menu at just under $100.

We went during lunch, and as part of their menu is the Bento Box ($35). This includes 6 dishes, and I thought this was a great option to try many different flavors in one go!

Who else helped deliver the main dishes but Chef Pepe Moncayo himself! I thought he looked familiar, and he didn’t introduce himself as the chef, but looking back and seeing his photo on the website, yup – it was definitely him. He was very nice and very excited for us to try his dishes.

Cranes DC restaurant
Cranes DC restaurant
Cranes DC restaurant

I don’t know how often they change their menu, but this time around, the Bento Box included:

grilled salmon with zucchini rice / bok choy with soy sauce / burrata with shiso pesto and confit tomatoes / chicken yakitori with lemongrass and ginger / maitake tempura / grilled shrimp with kosho sofrito and kumquat

Can I tell you what all of the ingredients are? Nope. But they were all so good!

Keep in mind, this was also a very filling meal. I ordered a bao bun tapas (below) as well, and barely had any room in me to finish it.

Cranes DC restaurant

My lunch date Rachel ordered a couple of oysters, and they went down so smooth!

Cranes DC restaurant
Cranes DC restaurant

She also ordered a plate of mussels (left) from the À La Carte menu, and I remember it filled her up quite well. Then again, items from the À La Carte menu is meant to be shared. The bao buns (right) came with two buns, is filled with braised short ribs, umeboshi mayo, and tobiko, and like everything else – mwah. Very good.

In short, if you’re looking for some delicious and unique dishes to try without breaking the bank too much, I highly recommend Cranes!


    • admin
      May 10, 2021 / 6:35 am

      Yes! I love little sampler plates like that 🙂

  1. May 12, 2021 / 11:55 pm

    Wow, this restaurant looks really good! The Spanish and Japanese influence combination is unique, and each dish looks incredible. I’ll add this to my list for the next time I’m in the DC area. =)

    I hope you are having a great week so far!



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    • admin
      May 18, 2021 / 7:09 am

      I hope you do! 🙂

  2. May 15, 2021 / 8:02 am

    Wow, this place looks amazing!

    Danielle |

  3. May 15, 2021 / 10:48 pm

    These all look soo good! It’s also nice how it was the chef himself who showed up and even served the food 🙂 I also can’t be as descriptive as I would like whenever it comes to sharing about food, but I do love reading through people’s thoughts on their food experience, how they felt, and how they enjoyed eating. Thank you for sharing with us!! Hope you are having a good weekend 🙂

    Anna Jo |

    • admin
      May 18, 2021 / 7:08 am

      Haha, good thing we can describe the food with photos! 😀

  4. May 17, 2021 / 5:15 am

    Oh my goodness this looks AMAZING! I so wanna go 🙂
    have a great start in the new week,

    P.S. You look stunning in the shot!

    • admin
      May 18, 2021 / 7:05 am

      Thanks Tiziana 🙂

  5. May 31, 2021 / 3:08 pm

    Sounds amazing! The food photos are gorgeous and the interior looks beautiful, too!

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