So to the fun part of our Madrid experience. There is no doubt that this city has much to offer; great restaurants, parks, cafès, food markets in all forms, shapes and sizes. Generally, we struggled to find our way around the restaurant scene because there are so many. It took a lot of research to find nice dining places which we liked and can recommend to others. So here are some of our favorites in Madrid.
Platea Madrid – theater-turn- gourmet food court with great decor and a superb collection of “restaurants” serving spanish deliciousness, Tapas, fresh seafood delght, cured sausages, jamon Iberico (ham) in all tastes and forms.
Arts Club – what’s better than enjoying good food surrounded by beautiful art. We celebrated new years eve here, and it was great fun with its 20s style theme. the food was good, the decor super and the clientele- lovely.
In the Salamanca area, try El Gordo at the Calle del Valesquez, a very nice place for late lunch when in need of a break from shopping. We liked this place, prices are not off either.
For a more traditional experience, and where you will find the best tapas, go to Barrio de ls Letras…”The writer’s quarter”. Walk around…enjoy the area, stop at Plaza Santa Ana and have lunch or dinner at the very popular restaurant Ana la Santa. You can then have a drink at sunset on the roof-top terrace in the same building for great view of Madrid.
Not far from Ana la Santa is Miss Sushi, a great sushi spot if you are a bit tired of tapas. Frankly after days with tapas, we wanted to eat something else. We came accross this mexican restaurant Taqueria La Lupita, which was really nice with interesting twist on the traditional mexican cuisine.
Cafès (guilty pleasures)
You cannot visit Madrid without having some really good freshly fried churros with melted chocolate and fresh coffee on the side. Heck there are own churros cafès. For the best churros, we liked Chocolatería San Ginés, the city’s perhaps most renowned chocolate/churros café. It is usually packed and long queues, but we there during early afternoon, so there were less people. Another one we liked was Chocolaterías Valor, they have different flavored chocolate dippings – from white to dark.chocolate
There are many food markets in Madrid, we were at The San Miguel with its 33 stalls and Mercado de San Antón (in the Chueca neigbourhood). Both have their vibes, but we preferred San Miguel, it was huge, more lively and so much deliciousness, great raw ingredients. You will find wines, traditional Spanish dishes and international food. Hectic place, but worth the visit. We would go there again.TIP. if you want the freshest selection go in the morning. But it will be more crowded. We were there in the late afternoon (17-18ish) and it was not that crowded.
Visit Retiro park. It is such an amazingly beautiful and huge park. We were there during winter – so we can image how beautiful it must be during summer time. Worth a visit. Maybe have a picnic or just stroll around. Check out the Crystal palace. Mind you, there are many tourists, but hey, sometimes I guess its easier to just accept that fact and go with the flow.
Enjoy YOUR Madrid experience!