A foodie in Madrid (post in English)

tiistai 13. marraskuuta 2018

What a foodie paradise Madrid was! We paid our very first visit to this metropol two years ago and were struck by the city's welcoming atmosphere and the enormous amount of interesting restaurants. So, naturally we had to go back and check out some more great restaurants. This time we managed to eat our way through three restaurants in two and a half day, and now I'm not counting the numerous tapas bars we stumbled upon on the way, not to forget the legendary Mercado de San Miguel. For the first evening's dinner I had reserved a table in the oldest winery in Madrid, which nowadays is known as La Bodega de los Secretos. A fine dining place in a romantic setting, due to the unique architecture. You find more information here.

To start our meal off we shared an appetizer called "Small beans with cuttlefish and sweet onion". So Spanish and utterly delicious.

I was the lucky winner concerning the main course: Baked butter fish loin with pack-choi and lime emulsion. Extremely tasty Asian flavours. I can still feel the heavenly taste in my mouth.

My husband's main was not as successful: Corvina at low temperature with zucchini noodles. Quite bland and tasteless.

Fortunately he succeeded better with his choice of white wine.

Next day immediately after breakfast we took a stroll to the gorgeous Mercado de San Miguel. It is supposed to be one of the world's main gastronomic markets and I don't doubt that at all. The atmosphere is crazy, it's crowded and loud but oh my goodness what delicacies you face when inside! All sorts of tapas, drinks, vegetables, fresh fish, seafood and meat. A very popular lunch place for the Madrileños working nearby. We visited the Mercado on a Saturday last time and then it was overcrowded. This Thursday you could move around easily without spilling your drink. Here is more info about the different stands in the mercado.

For the evening we had tickets to the Broadway musical Anastacia. It was performed in Spanish by such utterly talented and passionate actors and actresses that I have seldom experienced. No dinner, "only" tapas and wine. 

Friday was grey and rainy. A perfect day to visit El Corte Inglés in Salamanca , where you feel tempted to buy loads of nice, exclusive goodies for your pantry. Quite an impressive supply of beverages as well.

 We had time to enjoy two glasses of cava with a view from the sixth floor before rushing off to queue for lunch at StreetXO one floor up on the roof. The owner is David Muñoz, who, in a short time, has been awarded three Michelin stars for his restaurant DiverXO. He is recognized as "a mad cooking genius" and I totally agree. Asian fusion is the name of the game and the restaurant serves high quality street food. It's a little bit pricy, the atmosphere is loud and hectic but the food is to die for. It wouldn't be my choice for a relaxed dinner though!
I have to thank Merituuli from the blog Sillä Sipuli for recommending this restaurant. We had such a crazily delicious lunch!

This hip restaurant doesn't take reservations so stand in line you must! It was well worth it though! 

 Duck and white prawns warm sashimi vietnamese roll (nem) with sweetsour chillis and creamy alioli. Beautiful and at least as delicious as it looks!

 Roasted black cod macerated in umeboshi with free range chicken foaming sauce and vietnamese flavours. The tastiness of this dish can't be described … it was fabulous in every way. Our favourite!

 Korean lasagna: old galician beef, wontons with shitake mushrooms, spicy marinated tomatoes, goat milk, cardamom bechamel. Good flavours, a bit too heavy for us no lasagna lovers.

Final dish: marinated and lacquered rabbit shoulder balinese satay. Spicy peanuts "migas".

For our last evening in Madrid we had booked a table at one star Michelin restaurant Álbora in Salamanca. Downstairs there is The Bar, with tapas and foods to share. No star. Upstairs the fine dining section, very classic with white tablecloths and ugly but comfortable chairs. We wanted to be seated upstairs, but due to a loud, laughing group of Japanese businessmen I wished we had chosen the bar.

The amuse bouches melted in our mouths. Seafood moussseline and venison filled cannelloni in bouillon. 
Unfortunately I can't remember the ingredients in the dishes we chose …  and the menu has changed so I can't check it out. We didn't go for the tasting menu this time due to the big lunch. The dishes were okay, but I wouldn't give them a Michelin star.

Broad beans with cured ham

Cuttlefish and foam

Lobster , shellfish sauce and foam


The sommelier was one of the best in Madrid and when we told him what kind of wine we desired he chose this old Viña Tondona Reserva from Rioja for our meal. And a perfect choice it was! Next time I would probably go for the more relaxed gastro bar … there seemed to be quite a hustle and bustle down there on this Friday evening and the menu was interesting.

The only thing we brought home was one of these jamónes ibéricos. And Italian socks.

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