Anybody lucky enough to visit Spain’s largest and capital city of Madrid can’t help but be impressed by what it has to offer. Its history, culture, entertainment, sport and vivacity makes an unforgettable experience for all. But one thing that everybody talks about after enjoying a city break to Madrid is the enormous variety of incredible food.
Madrid is fast becoming a centre for culinary excellence, but it’s not all about being trendy and chic. It is instead popular for creative and unique ways of dining. Many of the city’s chefs are young and entrepreneurial, aspiring to produce memorable dining experiences and quality food, whilst encouraging Madrileños and tourists alike to develop a more adventurous palate.
Despite being situated in the middle of Spain, Madrid is rather surprisingly home to the second largest fish market in the world, after Tokyo. The fact that it is so centrally located means that all the country’s best quality produce can easily reach the city and be used on the menus of its thousands and thousands of restaurants.
Take a look below at six places that we think you should definitely make time to eat at during your time in the city.
Mama Campo is a popular choice for those among us wanting to ‘eat clean’. There are three sides to the business, located around the Plaza de Olavide: a health food store stocked to the brim with colourful, natural goodness; a children’s health food store and most recently the Mama Campo restaurant itself, all dishes being prepared using their own healthy produce. Its charming, eco-friendly décor and top quality, reasonably priced food make it a hit for all.
Mercado de San Miguel
Originally completed in May 1916, this stunning food market undertook a huge renovation and reopened its doors to the public in 2009. Since then, it has become every foodie’s gastronomic heaven, filled with countless stalls selling high quality food and wine – everything from cheap and cheerful pastries and tapas to higher end delicacies and more substantial meals. There are plenty of tables set out for you to stay around and sample as much as your eyes and belly can manage!
For a flavour of something other than Spanish, plan ahead and book yourself a table at what is claimed to be the best Mexican restaurant in the whole of Europe. Punto MX is like no ordinary Mexican restaurant. You know you’re getting the real deal here when the waiter prepares the guacamole right there at your table, so as to get the taste exactly to your liking. It may not be cheap and you will struggle to get a table unless you book well in advance, but the delicious food and authentic Mexican experience is worth every penny.
Museo del Jamon
The Museo del Jamon (Ham Museum) is a chain of restaurants founded in 1978 and spread across the city of Madrid. Visit any one of these unique eating establishments and you will dine surrounded by a sea of different hams from all over the country, making it quite the tourist attraction. The atmosphere is buzzing, yet relaxed and the food is exceptional, yet affordable. Choose from a huge range of foods, including, sandwiches, tapas and paella.
Restaurante Sobrino de Botin
No visit to Madrid is complete without eating at the place that holds the Guinness World Record for being the oldest restaurant in the world! The Restaurante Sobrino de Botin was established in 1725 and boasts traditional, charming surroundings and a wealth of history. Book a table at this world famous restaurant and request to be seated in the caves situated downstairs. Take a look around the old wine cellar and be sure to try their famous ‘suckling pig’ dish!
If you’re after great tasting tapas, head straight for Casa Labra. This restaurant has been serving up traditional Spanish food in an almost untouched atmosphere since the 19th century. You will find a variety of meat dishes and wines to choose from on their menu, but what the restaurant is really famous for is its fantastic ‘bacaloa’, or cod, which you must try in croquette form. You will, without a doubt, be back for more before your trip is over!
Have you been to any of the above before? Where else would you suggest eating in Madrid? Comment below and let us know!