The Spanish capital is a pure gastro heaven, with an array of amazing restaurants serving culinary delights that go well beyond the ever-popular paella. Here are 10 places for a taste of Madrid, from haute cuisine dishes to gourmet tapas:
La Biblioteca at Hotel Santo Mauro
El Club Allard
Dining at El Club Allard is a grandiose experience in every sense. From the solemn interior décor boasting high ceilings and chandeliers, to the impressive menu that blends traditional flavors and modern aromas, everything in this restaurant oozes elegance. Led by Chef José Carlos Fuentes, the kitchen serves creative and visually-impactful dishes that burst with flavour and earned the restaurant two Michelin stars. Guests can pick from a la carte menu or seasonal tasting menus, paired with excellent wines specially selected by the in-house sommelier, Álvaro Prieto.
Part of the Hesperia Madrid Hotel, Santceloni is an award-winning restaurant that offers creative gourmet dishes like duck lasagna with Idiazabel cheese and celeriac noodles with black truffle, to pair with one of the 900 wines from the restaurant’s own cellar. Santceloni is also renowned for its extensive selection of cheeses, which includes over 300 varieties. Menus are seasonal and available to guests are a private studio with views over the kitchen and a Cigar Club to indulge in an after meal cigar and drink.
Montes de Galicia
Juana La Loca
Those craving tapas should make a beeline for Juana La Loca, a trendy spot in Madrid’s La Latina district, offering gourmet tapas and cocktails. Here Spain’s classic small bites take a creative spin, with tasty treats like smoked eel and hazelnut gratin millefeuilles with Iberic bacon, truffled eggs and fried Gernika peppers with bacon and melted brie. One of the restaurant’s signature tapas is the traditional tortilla de patata with onion confit, which is said to be the best in town. The atmosphere is vibrant and laid-back, and guests can either take a seat or join locals at the bar counter.
Located just steps from the Retiro Park, Viridiana is the brainchild of celebrity Chef Abraham García, who’s considered one of the pioneers of fusion cuisine. The menu changes often and includes hearty, flavorful dishes served in generous portions, accompanied by one of the most extensive wine lists in town. Chef García even produces the extra virgin olive oil used in the restaurant and it’s not uncommon for diners to see him coming out of the kitchen to explain a dish. His many passions are well reflected in the restaurant’s décor, which features a unique hat motif and black and white prints of Luis Bunuel’s classic movie (from which the restaurant takes its name).
A two-Michelin-starred restaurant in trendy Chueca district that serves haute cuisine dishes in a relaxed, industrial-like environment featuring exposed-brick walls and metallic pipes. There’s no a la carte menu, but rather two tasting menus to choose from (one with 15 courses and another with 18 courses), and diners can see Chef Diego Guerrero and his team in action from the open kitchen. His cuisine is based on creativity and innovative techniques, mixing Spanish tradition with Mexican and Japanese flavours.