Category Archives: Food and Drink

How About Lunch at the Home of the Galácticos?

Last year my son and I went for lunch with a very good friend of mine to the Real Café Bernabéu. It was actually the day that Real Madrid played Manchester United at home and, luckily, we managed to get a table. If you like your football, then you’ll love this place – the chance to have lunch overlooking the Real Madrid football ground. The café is situated behind the goals of the great ground and all of the tables offer good views out over the stadium. If you’re lucky enough, you can even bag a window seat. The food good and the price is reasonable (given the location). For 19.90 Euros you can enjoy elect your plate of choice from the starter, main and dessert and each day they change the menu selection (I suppose this is standard for most menús del día). The kids menu is 11 Euros. If you are in the area, you may want to consider doing a tour of the stadium before heading off for lunch.

Here’s a copy of their latest menu (March 2014). You’ll notice that the menú del día is in the top left but you can select a variety of starters, main and desserts.

Getting There

Bus: 14, 27, 40, 43, 120, 126, 147 y 150
Metro: Santiago Bernabéu. L10

Google Map

Democrats Abroad – 4th July Celebration in Madrid

I got an email last week from the Democrats Abroad asking me to publish details of their 4th July celebration. Here’s what they’ll be getting up to:

Don’t miss out on the hamburgers, bar-b-que and 4th of July fun just because you are in Madrid. Join the Democrats Abroad for their annual all-American Independence Day party – the best 4th of July party in Madrid!

Everyone is welcome to enjoy the celebration, which starts at 7 pm on (you guessed it) Wednesday, July 4th. The party features live rock and roll music by the popular Madrid band, Angie Herna and Soul Fingers. Admission is free.

Authentic Texas bar-b-que – including hamburgers, ribs, steak and chicken – will be on offer from Ribs Restaurant. The party will take place on the outdoor terrace of Ribs Gregorio Benítez at the Arturo Soria Plaza (metro: Arturo Soria).

A Silent Auction will be held at the party to raise funds to support the activities of Democrats Abroad throughout the upcoming year…a very important one on the political calendar. Among the items to be auctioned are: baskets of wine, gourmet foods, massages, and handcrafted jewelry.

Location: Ribs Restaurant
Address: Gregorio Benítez, 4
Arturo Soria Plaza
Madrid (Metro: Arturo Soria)
Time: 7pm – 11 pm
Wednesday, July 4, 2007
Free Admission
For further information please contact:
Sean Ansett – 667 724 385

Have fun!


Top Dishes from Top Metrópoli

Here are some mouth-watering suggestions of dishes to eat and restaurants where to eat them in Madrid. Every month El Mundo, one of Spain’s foremost newspapers, puts a selection of restaurants where you can eat a certain type of dish on to its Metrópoli section. Here are a list of recent additions to its Top Metrópoli section:

Pasta con Marisco – Quite simply Pasta with shellfish!

Terrinas marineras – Seafood terrines

Lasaña creativa -Don’t think this needs a translation. A good selection here of 11 restaurants.

Espaguetis boloñesa – Sticking with the Italian theme another fine selection of restaurants to eat this Italian dish

Bonito – a delicious fish from the tuna family. Very popular in Spain.

Mero – this fish is apparently called Grouper Fish in English and can often be found in fish markets in Spain

Sopa de pescado tradicional – Traditional fish soup – made with a good selection of fish.

Sopas exóticas de pescado – Here’s a selection of Far Eastern restaurants offering “exotic” fish soup.

Platos con chucrut – once more stepping out if Spain here we have a selection of restaurants that serve Sauerkraut. A personal recommendation on this list would be Edelweiss.

Goxua – let’s finish off this selection with a dessert. Goxua is a Galician Basque (oh bugger! I got this completely wrong thanks Paloma) dish generally made of sponge, cream and liquid caramel. Correct me if I’m wrong!

It’s Nice To Receive Thanks!

I normally leave blog comments where they belong – either on a blog article or in the bin! – but this time I thought I’d share this everyone. On a wet, miserable day in Wales, it was nice to open this email this morning:

What a delightful experience! An authentic spanish bar with delicious food, delicious wine and perfect atmosphere. I loved it because I was with my spanish husband and felt we really were in Madrid as we did not bump into a whole bunch of tourists.
Thank you for allowing me to be there!

The author of this was referring to Casa Labra – thanks Gabrielle for your kind words!

Planeta Vino – Madrid Wine Blog


I wrote an article going back about a year – Wine Dinner At Restaurante Memento – about an event which was organised between Memento restaurant and Planeta Vino, a wine tasting company from Madrid. Well, I just chanced on Planeta Vino’s weblog and thought I would share it with visitors. Mary O’Connor updates the blog and offers some great tips on wines from Spain (and even outside), along with some good restaurant, bar and wine bar recommendations. Worth a look!

Madrid Tapas Fair – Sample Local Cuisine

The Annual Feria de la Tapa takes place from the 30th May to the 3rd June, 2007 in the Palacio de Deportes. The idea is to offer visitors the full range of tapas available to the public from local Madrilenian businesses. Entry is free and visitors will be ale to sample tapas and drinks at reduced prices. If you’re an outsider it’s a great opportunity to sample the breadth of tapas available to the public in Madrid – there are both traditional and ‘innovative’ tapas on offer.

Address: C/ Jorge Juan, 99
Metro: Goya

Ten Places I Would Never Eat or Drink in Madrid

I was walking around Madrid the to other day when I started thinking about some of the places that tourists go which add little, or no, value to the Madrid experience.They are often franchises, plastic in aspect and with no character. I explored this a little further with Vicen, my brother-in-law, and here is our Top 10 Places where you shouldn´t go in Madrid.:

  1. MC Donald´s – OK, so you eat this crap outside Spain. Why not start eating properly in Spain?
  2. Burger King – Nothing more to add.
  3. Kentucky Fried Chicken – Why on earth would you want to do it? Go look for some alitas or Pollo Asdao or Pollo al Ajillo. Much better and tastier!
  4. Starbucks – Usually double (at least!) the cost of a local coffee. A pointless experience but for some reason Americans, and Brits, they feel a need to go here. Go to the bar next door and get a taste of Spain.
  5. Pans and Co – I just don´t get this place when you can go to ANY bar and order a bocadillo.
  6. Cañas y Tapas – You will find these god-awful places all over Madrid. Go to the bar next door, please.
  7. VIPS – Another pointless place to go have food. I cannot understand why Spaniards, and some foreigners, go to these places for their lunch or dinner. Find a place that does Menú del Día nearby and get much better value for money.
  8. Café y Té is according to their website: "la consagración del concepto coffee-shop en España" (Trans: the consecration of the coffee shop concept in Spain). Bollocks! It´s another bloody franchise you shouldn´t bother going to.
  9. Dunkin Doughnuts – You come to Spain and end up eating this! Just go to one of the many pastry shops and bars and eat their great food.
  10. Subway – bascially, expensive bocadillos sold in plastic shops!

And, on that note, I´m off to have a bocadillo de lomo and a beer. All for around 3 Euros. Beat that Mc Donald´s!

Note: I have not included URL´s – if you want to find them, do it yourself!

The Urban Gastronomic Market comes to Madrid

From the 22nd to the 25th March, 2007 the Plaza Santa Ana becomes home to the Mercado Gastronómico Urbano de Madrid or the Urban Gastronomic Market of Madrid (incidentally, this event looks like it takes place every quarter). Plaza Santa Ana is a well-known Madrid nighttime hot spot but is also a very pretty square which includes the Teatro Español and the famous Reina Victoria Hotel (now the ME Madrid Reina Victoria).

As most people know Spain is recognized for its gastronomic excellence – though even here (with the rise of giant supermarkets) they feel it important to organize a festival that helps city people get a closer look at the products that are produced from around Spain. There will be live presentations and the chance to sample food and drink. From the (bloody awful!) website I gather that you can buy products like wine, olive oil, cheeses, honey, cider, packed fish and pretty much any other food you could wish for!

La Plaza Mercado Gastronómico Urbano de Madrid (official website of this organisation).

Madrid Me Mata

Taberna Maceiras – a Galician Tavern!

Taberna Maceiras, Madrid

I was just trawling my Madrid picture album (I must have taken hundreds of pictures over the past few years) when I came across a bar that I haven’t blogged about. The Taberna Maceiras is located in Madrid’s famous c/ de las Huertas, one of the city’s most famous nightspots, and boasts some fine food. When Spain beat Argentina in a nail-biting semi final of the Basketball World Championship (they eventually won it), I was sitting in Maceiras having my lunch.

Like many Spanish bars and restaurants the decor of this place is very simple – the owners let the food do the talking for them. On a busy day you may be packed in close to the people on the next table but who cares!

Taberna Maceiras is a Galician Tavern and offers visitors a great selection of food and drink from this region – and boy is the food from Galicia great. Maceiras offers customers raciones – dishes of food which you can, and should, share amongst friends. Here’s a selection from their fish, shellfish and other dishes:

  • calamari (calamares)
  • clams (almejas),
  • mejillones (mussels)
  • steamed cockles (berberechos),
  • navajas (razor clams),
  • pulpo (octopus)
  • pimientos de padrón (padrón green peppers)

and many other wonderful dishes.

I’m not a great dessert fan but some people have recommended Queso Arzúa – Ulloa D.O con membrillo (Arzúa cheese with quince). I would also recommend that you try the Vino Albariño. If I’m correct they were having a fiesta del pulpo around the same time (let me know if you can clarify this) and the place was absolutely packed out most lunchtimes.

Huertas (Centro) 66, 28014 Madrid, Spain – +34 914 295 818

Google Map

December Suggestions from Metrópoli

15o Planes

Metrópoli has a really good guide to what you can do in Madrid this December – it is in Spanish, though. They have come up with 150 suggestions for what you can do in the coming weeks – eat, drink, be merry and much more. Interestingly, they have broken them down into 15 categories – based on different types of personality. These range from the sportsman (woman), the art lover, the over 65’s, under 18’s, the shopaholics, singles, and a good few more. There are some really cool suggestions here – there is even a category for those who think they’re cool!!

Madrid’s Popular Local Dishes, Recipes, Foods and Places to Eat

For those who don’t yet know – and there may be some – Madrid is one fantastic, gastronomic experience. Putting aside the Italian, Mexican, Chinese and Thai restaurants that most major cities have, Madrid offers some of the very best “Spanish” restaurants that you will find in Spain.

The costas of Spain may well be renowned for frozen, packaged and processed food but in Madrid some of the only places that dish this sort of food up are the foreign, American burger and fast food joints. Interestingly, one of Spain’s top chefs, Ferrán Adriá, opened a new fast food concept called “Fast Good” just over 2 years ago – the idea being to offer fresh, quality, fast food.

I don’t have much experience of other capital cities but I do know that Madrid offers a very broad selection of regional food from around the country: from Basque and Galician to Valencian, Andalucian and Madrileño.

Here are some starting points for those who want to sample ‘local’ cuisine.
EsMadrid offers its guide to Madrileñan cooking, though admittedly it is all in Spanish. Here you can find some of the Madrid region’s favourite dishes: Cocido Madrileño (stew), Callos a la Madrileña (sort of tripe with beans), Sopa de Ajo (garlic soup), Tortilla de Patata (no need to translate), Bacalao a la Madrileña (Salted Cod in a sauce) and Potaje de Garbanzos (chick pea stew). The guide even includes recipes and points you in the direction of some typical Madrileñan bars/restaurants, like Malacatín, La Bola, La Posada de la Villa, Don Cocido, Casa Carola and L
a Taberna de Daniela.

This site also has some good suggestions about ‘asadores’ (grill houses) where you can eat the culinary delights of the Basque-Navarre and Castilian regions. Some of suggestions are plain mouth-watering: suckling pig, bream, Basque Hake, sardines and cod, with many of the suggested restaurants frequented by film, sporting and political celebrities.

NOTE: Some of EsMadrid’s pages don’t work too well in Firefox (like the one above) and you will have to use Internet Explorer to view them!!! is the Spanish Tourist Board website, and a very good one it is, too. The site offers its guide to both food products and dishes from the Madrid region, including:

Olives from Campo Real
Chinchón White Garlic
Anis from Chinchón

Beef from the Guadarrama Mountains
Asparagus from Aranjuez
Madrid virgin olive oil

and some popular dishes from the region:

Garlic soup
Madrid ‘cocido’ (meat, potato and chickpea stew)
Madrid ‘Torrijas’  (bread pudding)

Madrid tripe
Madrid-style baked red bream
Potato omelette

It also has some suggestion, taken from the Campsa Guide of places where you can eat.

By the way if you’d like to try out some of the recipes of Spain’s most famous ‘TV’ chef, Karlos Arguiñano, I would suggest you visit his website: La cocina de Karlos Arguiñano, where you will find at least a few hundred Spanish recipes – be aware it is all in Spanish!

Madrid Challenge
Try not to eat or drink in any of the international chains: Mc Donald’s, Starbucks, Burger King, Pizza Hut, etc. The food will be much better and at least you will be immersing yourself in the local culture and food.

Related Articles
Fast Good a new fast food concept opens in Madrid

Vegetarian Restaurants in Madrid

Last week El Mundo offered a selection of some of its favourite vegetarian restaurants in Madrid. If you can’t read, or can’t be bothered to read in Spanish, here is the gist of what they had to say.

Al Natural. Price around 20€. Metro: Banco de España.
Just behind the Congress, their most popular dishes are stuffed aubergines and leeks with brie.

Artemisa. Around 25€. Metro: Sevilla
Run by Óscar Castro since 1990.
Their most popular dish is Farah Diba, made from mushrooms stuffed with paté, asparagus, aubergines and gouda cheese.

Ecocentro Madrid

. Price around 20€. Metro: Rios Rosas/Cuatro Caminos. At this restaurant you can enjoy tabuleh with pesto seasoning or baked tofus – they also have a shop where you can buy vegetarian products. The Ecocentro Website for this establishment details all the menus for each day of the week.

El Estragón. Prices around 30€. Metro: La latina.
A tavern-restaurant which offers, amongst other things, soya meatballs, whole and paella of brown rice and gluten escalopes.

La Galette. Prices from 20 €. Metro: Colón.

El Mundo says that it is “perfect for romantic, candlelit dinners”. The apple croquets sound interesting at this venue.

La Isla del Tesoro. Prices around 20€. Metro: Bilbao.
Given the name of the place, Treasure Island in English, customers feel like they’re in a pirate movie! Boletus (mushroom) ravioli and sorbet of mojito (apparently a Cuban drink) are on offer.

Vegetarian Art. Price 20€. Metro: Ibiza. Designed to look like an echanted wood, with gnomes and elves, Vegetarian Art offers dried fruit croquets, pastas and rices.

The World’s Most Expensive Hamburger

Botín might be the oldest restaurant in the world (1725) and Taberna de Antonio Sánchez may be the oldest bar in Madrid (1830) but to this list can now be added Restaurante Estik, which sells (they reckon) the most expensive hamburger in the world. At 85 Euros (about $107) the Kobe steak hamburger will set you back a little more than your standard burger but it will ceratinly be one that you won’t forget eating! However, according to the Guinness Book of Records the title of “most expensive hamburger in the world” goes to a New York restaurant, DB Burger Royale, whose hamburger sells for around $69. I’m sure this won’t last long.

If you feel that your credit card could take such a hit on a burger, head over to the Restaurante Estik website and book a table. With all the talk of trans fats and the damage they can cause, this hamburger may not be that costly!

Tinto de Verano – a Perfect Drink for Summer

I have been speaking (by emal) with Kelly over at and he mentioned that his favourite drink was Tinto de Verano. So, given that we are now in the warm months of summer, I thought that it would be an idea to post the ingredients for one of summer’s most refreshing drinks, Tinto de Verano:

1/2 bottle of red wine
Casera, lemonade or sprite
Lemon wedge/slice

Place ice in tall glass
Pour in the red wine until it is half full
Add the lemonade to fill it
Add a slice of lemon

Delicioso! – as ‘backpack’ would say in Dora the Explorer (you can tell I have a 4 year-old!)

I have seen variations of this and expect to receive an email from my brother-in-law to refine it! Please, let me know if you have any variations. Apparently, it doesn’t really matter whether it is a good or poor wine.