Besides being the capital of Spain and a popular tourist attraction, Madrid is also one of the best places to eat in the country. Much of the local cuisine includes fried meats, tortillas, beans, and potatoes. You can also find more unique tastes like calamari (fried squid), chitterlings, tripe, and grilled pig ears.
With a warm Mediterranean climate, many of the eateries are outdoors or have outdoor seating. Also, vendors can be found selling street food all over the city. But wherever you decide to go, be sure to leave your luggage and shopping bags at a suitcase storage facility in Madrid first to enjoy a hassle-free meal.
Bars and Taverns
Casa Dani may be a bar rather than a fancy restaurant, but they won the award for the best omelet in Spain in 2019. So, it should be no surprise that Dani’s won the best bar in Madrid in 2019 as well. They serve three meals a day here with a full breakfast, including those famous omelets. Lunch and dinner meals include T-bones, lamb, roasted pig, or seafood.
Another fantastic bar to enjoy a meal at is Salmon Guru. Of course, the salmon is amazing, but you also have to try the lamb sweetbreads, prawn Crudo, and roasted quail drumsticks. The atmosphere is unique for Madrid with a 1950s tropical lounge look.
Bodega la Ardosa
For over 125 years, Bodega la Ardosa has been a hangout for those who want good food and excellent service with their drinks. They are famous for their vermouth on tap as well as the sea anemones, artichokes, and braised beef cheeks. Also, their tortillas have won gold medals. Don’t miss the squid sandwich on black bread.
The Misión Café is more than just a coffee house. In fact, they are well-known for their fabulous coffee, but their food is even better. Try a ham and asiago cheese sandwich with eggs and potatoes or a kimcheese, which is a kimchi sandwich with asiago cheese. They also feature weekend specials like pork sandwiches and brioche with salmon.
This café has been around since 1887, so they must know a thing or two about food. They boast two different menus. In the restaurant and bar, try a calamari sandwich, Madrid tripe, or a potato omelet. The drink list is long as well, and they are known for their churros and chocolate as well.
Listed as one of the best places for brunch in Madrid, the Federal Café is famous for its churros, toast, and croissants. You can also get a mouthwatering veggie burger, poached eggs on toast, or their crazy good shakshuka. Get a window seat so you can watch the world go by.
It may be casual, but the food at StreetXO is anything but. Start with Pekinese dumplings or roasted scallops, then enjoy Korean lasagna or pancetta with pickled mussels. The Singapore laksa with shrimp is also divine. For the main meal, have black Angus salad or black cod. Dessert is strawberry ice cream or brioche.
Starting with suckling lamb burgers or wild boar with truffle, you will immediately know the chef is an artist. The prices are amazing, though and the atmosphere is casual. Tell that to the Baltic herring tartare marinated with mango and avocado or the Guadarrama veal cheek stewed in black beer.
Blessed by Anthony Bourdain, Casa Salvador is not your typical casual eatery. Try their cod fritters for a starter before delving into one of the delicious meals. Chicken in garlic sauce, veal chops, ribeye, or veal sirloin are all served with sides and they have 10 different fish meals. Don’t miss the crocanti or caramel flan for dessert.
The only restaurant in Madrid with three Michelin stars, you know you will get a spectacular meal at DiverXO. The food is unique and delicious, and the chef finishes it at your table, serving it in stages as individual works of art. You will need to take pics. And the place is fabulously furnished with plush lounge chairs and curtains for privacy.
La Terraza del Casino
You have not seen fancy until you walk into this place. Chandeliers, linen tablecloths, gorgeous scenery, and fine china. Served as a tasting menu, you will get 20 tiny courses from truffle pizza to Thai peanut, and red prawn. The vegetable garden salad is artfully designed to look like a garden but even the “dirt” is edible.
Even with “only” two Michelin stars, Santceloni will amaze you with their menu. Choose from lobster with endives, mussel soup with yam, ox tartare with corn, and a crazy assortment of cheeses from their cheese table. Then there is the duck lasagna with pistachios, sea bass, or smoked ravioli with caviar.
Street Foods and Markets
Mercado de San Miguel
Mercado de San Miguel is more than a market, it is over 20 eateries both indoors and out, each with its own specialty. Madrí is a bar where you can get tiger mussels and beer, Morris has fresh seafood including octopus and barnacles, and Rocambolesc has artisanal and natural ice cream, baked goods, and candy.
Also known as the Market of Peace, this is the place to go for a nice and casual gathering of local grocers and other merchants. Not only can you get unbelievably fresh food, but you can also find some unique souvenirs. The locals even shop and eat here so you know it’s good.
Mercado de Maravillas
With over 250 stalls, you can find everything from avocados to ziti at Mercado de Maravillas. If you want meat, Teo Butcher is a great choice. For the freshest seafood, you can choose from Antonio Municio, Lieban Arias, or Fish and Seafood El Puerto. Try Dancing Fruits, Manuel Martin Cheeses, or Sweet Pepper for other fun tastes.
This is just a small sample of the amazing Spanish restaurants you can find in Madrid. After all, it is the capital of Spain, so it makes sense that they have the best Spanish foods. Make sure you take a lot of selfies and photos of the magnificent way they serve their masterpieces to share on social media.