10 February 2020

Where to eat good tapas in Madrid, and more

Go

  • Bodegas Ricla, for its old-school, genuine appeal, and great prices for a proper selection of wines, and tasty anchovy tapas.

  • Casa Toni, for the wide range of choice and overall quality of the pinchos on the menu: if you only have time for one bar, Casa Toni will not disappoint.

  • La Casa del Abuelo, for the best shrimps you will have in your life (unless you don’t like garlic).

Try

  • Triciclo, if you are looking for a fancier place to eat: prices are fancier too, but what is on the plates is delicious.

  • La Taberna Errante, if you want to spend some quality time in a bar that is neither too old-timey, neither too hip, and far enough from tourists.1

  • La Duquesita, if you miss sweet food after the tapas galore and are ready to fall in love with cremadillos de crema y manzana.

Avoid

  • Mercado de San Ildefonso, unless you are starving and cannot find any taberna open around you.

  • Museo del Jamon, unless you are short on money and still hungry after the first round of tapas.

  • Patatas bravas, unless you really want potatoes: there are far better options taste-wise when you are in Madrid (if you crave potatoes, you can never go wrong with a tortilla). Same story for sangria: ask waiters which Spanish wine to try.2

Extras

  • Plenti, because who knew tomato purée would taste so good on breakfast toasts?

  • Toni 2, because the night is young, and you want a joyful and unique cabaret experience.

  • La Venencia, because you never really tried Sherry and cecina before.

  • Retiro park, because you need to take a break from eating.

  • Mercado de La Paz, because I read The Guardian’s pretty good list of food markets to visit and this is the one I would recommend.3

You can find all the locations of these fantastic places to eat in Madrid on this Apple Maps collection📍.


  1. The Russian salads on the menus have nothing to do with Russia, according to my Russian wife.

  2. I stopped drinking alcohol almost two year ago and one of the best thing about Spain is how easy it is to find alcohol-free beer, compared to the situation in France.

  3. Obviously there are many, many other wonderful places to go eat in Madrid: It was my fifth or sixth time in the Spanish capital, and I focused a lot of my food tastings on tapas, hence this — very short but focused and very curated — personal list.


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