Jaleo Celebrates Spain’s Culinary Jewel During Ibérico Week With Most Expensive Ham In The World

Ham is on the menu this week at Jaleo by José Andrés, but it doesn’t come from just any little piggies.

Considered the finest and most expensive ham in the world, jamón ibérico de bellota comes from legendary black-footed pigs that were acorn-fed and freely-raised on a hillside of the Iberian Peninsula between Spain and Portugal.

Now, Spain’s homegrown ham has made its way to Sin City. The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas restaurant will celebrate (and serve) this prized meat during Ibérico Week, May 20-25.

Secreto 2Photo Credit: Anthony Mair

“At Jaleo – really, all ThinkFoodGroup restaurants – we think of ourselves as storytellers who use food to paint a picture,” says Luis Montesinos, head chef at Jaleo by José Andrés. “These pigs have a story, and their journey from being raised on a single family farm in the hills of Salamanca to ultimately making it to the desert is pretty incredible.”

Jamón ibérico de bellota is salted and cured for at least 36 months after slaughter, which along with its diet and lifestyle, adds significantly to its rich and savory flavor.

Guests may experience rare cuts of Spain’s culinary jewel with an Ibérico Tasting Menu at Jaleo by José Andrés for $95 (plus $55 for wine pairings) all week. The tasting menu includes three cocktails, called the Three Little Piggies, each made with ibérico: Negroni del Campo (ibérico fat infused Gin Mare, Yzaguirre Rojo Reserva vermouth and Campari), Tres Cerditos (Bellota bourbon, Barspoons acorn syrup, Peychaud’s bitters, Regan’s orange bitters, orange peel (expressed) and Del Maguey ibérico mist), and Cerdo de Primavera (smoked bellota bourbon, cantaloupe shrub, fresh orange juice, fresh lime juice and Liquer43).

jaleoPhoto Credit: Jaleo by José Andrés

For those seeking a more exclusive experience, the restaurant will host an intimate chef’s dinner for only 10 people, “An Evening in Salamanca” on Thursday May 24 at 8:30 p.m. Guests at the dinner will be transported to the Spanish countryside during the tasting experience, led by Chef Montesinos, Jaleo Culinary Director Ramon Martinez, Jaleo Crystal City Head Chef Aaron Helfand and Raul Martin of Fermín.

Cost for the eight-course meal is $250 per person, plus $150 for wine pairings.

“We’re lucky and it’s special to have these cuts and product in the U.S.,” says Chef Montesinos, “but especially in Las Vegas.”

For reservations, call Jaleo at 702-698-7950 or email reservelasvegas@jaleo.com.