We love Easter as it gives us a chance to go away for a long weekend without having to use up any of our annual leave – what’s not to love? This year we decided to go to Madrid after hearing good things about it – particularly the food. We spent an Easter weekend a few years ago in Barcelona and everyone we spoke to who had been to both cities said that the food in Madrid was much better. I have to say, I agree. We had some wonderful meals in Madrid – here are some of our culinary highlights.
This was suggested to us by one of my husband’s colleagues and as it was very close to our hotel (in the Las Letras district), we decided to book it for our first dinner. The food was good – certainly not the best we’d had in Madrid but the main reason it’s in this post is because the restaurant itself is very quirky. As the name suggests, the restaurant is designed like it’s an old apartment with vintage telephones and knick knacks. The menus are pulled out of old record covers – very fun!
We ordered a bottle of Rose cava and started with the Spanish potato salad with wild asparagus and crunchy octopus and the cured beef from León with Parmesan cheese slivers, walnuts and olive oil. We then both opted for the Ox sirloin with a Port reduction and vegetables, which was very good. The sauce was delicious and we could have done with more! For dessert, we shared an apple pie with caramel ice-cream.
Ten con Ten
On our second night we went to Ten con Ten in Barrio de Salamanca, which is a very trendy bar and restaurant. We were a bit early but decided to go for cocktails at a nearby modern Mexican restaurant (Restaurante Tepic), which I highly recommend – the cocktails were fabulous!
When we entered Ten con Ten the bar was buzzing, which made me think it would be very loud for dinner but the restaurant is made up of numerous rooms and it was actually a lovely ambience. Strangely for me, I didn’t actually take any photos at all so you’ll just have to imagine the food…
For starters we had the barbecued octopus and Iberica ham, which were very good. My husband then had Picaña Braseada con Yuca y Plátano, which was beef with plantains and cassava – it was really yummy! I opted for cod with a crab and prawn sauce. The cod was perfectly cooked and the sauce was rich and complimented the fish perfectly.
Thai Garden 2112
After a couple of days of eating delicious Spanish food, we decided to have a change of culinary scenery. We asked the concierge at our hotel to recommend a good Thai restaurant and he suggested Thai Garden 2112. It’s about a 15 minute drive from the centre but it’s so worth the journey. The restaurant is stunning – the decor is beautiful and there is a fabulous garden with three pools and lovely lights and statues.
We were given a complimentary cocktail on arrival in a very unusually shaped glass, which was a lovely touch. For starters we chose the mixed platter for one and the vegetarian spring rolls. The food was beautifully presented and it was delicious!
For our mains we choose the Massaman curry and the Phad Thai. The Phad Thai was a little on the sweet side but it was still very good. The curry was well spiced and the beef was lovely and tender.
If you love Thai food, I highly recommend Thai Garden 2112 for great food, excellent service and a stunning atmosphere.
My husband found Albora when he was looking for Michelin-starred restaurants in Madrid (Albora has one star). They have both a restaurant and a bar so we tried our luck on Saturday and arrived for lunch without a reservation – we are such rebels. Luckily for us, they had a table in the bar and I do love places where you can see the chefs at work.
Our waiter was wonderful and helped explain the menu and suggested a few of their most popular dishes. For starters we opted for the tomato salad with white asparagus and tuna (so fresh and tasty), a lamb dish and the ham, which was the best we’d had in Madrid.
For mains we chose the barbecued octopus and the “Pluma ibérica “ Joselito” con pimientos de piquillo”, which was absolutely divine. We enjoyed all our dishes with a bottle of perfectly chilled Cava.
We weren’t going to have dessert but our waiter convinced us to try a half portion of dessert that is typical at Easter. It was lovely and light and I wish we’d had a full portion! And a lovely surprise was that they gave us the dessert on the house.
A friend suggested that we go to La Latina as it’s got great tapas bars, particularly on Cava Baja so we took a long walk from our hotel on the Thursday. As it happened to be a holiday in Spain that day (and it was sunny and very warm), the area was really busy. We walked around trying to find somewhere to eat and I spotted a cute little place down one of the parallel streets, called Majare Ta.
We had a lovely waitress who explained the menu and suggested their speciality dish – Huevos rotos crujientes, which is like potato crisps with blood sausage crisps on top of fried eggs with a piquant sauce. Oh my goodness it was amazing (although it doesn’t look that visually appetizing)! My husband didn’t like it, which meant I got to eat it all! We also ordered a salad, which was lovely and fresh and light and some Iberica ham with bread. We enjoyed a sort-of sangria with our food.
My husband and I were divided on this restaurant – I really loved it whereas he liked it but didn’t love it. I will drag him back though next time we’re in Madrid for those wonderful Huevos rotos crujientes!