Madrid

Old Jan 30th, 2001, 04:46 AM
  #1  
charlie
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Madrid

I am going to Madrid this coming w/e and I would love to hear from any of you crazy travellers on where to go to start off the evening with a nice spot of opera or a good concert.

Good restaurant tips would also be good as most of the decent international guides seem to avoid madrid

Thanks
 
Old Jan 30th, 2001, 06:48 AM
  #2  
Paulo
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I posted this upon returning from Madrid in August ...

Restaurant recommendations:

* Taberna del Alabardero (Felipe V 6; Metro Opera; tel. 91 531 6612; reservations recommended for dinner inside) This is next to the Royal Theatre, just off Plazza de Oriente. We went there twice. Once for a tapas dinner outside (with a view of part of the façade of the Royal Palace; 6,000ptas for two) and once for full course dinner inside (about 9,500ptas for two). We didn't reserve but were lucky to get the next to last table for dinner without having to wait. Menu with a bias toward Basque cuisine. Very nice setting and good service. Hard on nonsmokers inside.

*Café del Oriente (Plaza de Oriente 2; Metro Opera; tel. 91 541 3974) We had a tapas lunch outside on exiting the Royal Palace (5,000ptas) and didn't make it back for a planned dinner inside. Very nice setting and good service.

*Botin (Cuchilleros 17; Metro Opera, Sol or Tirso de Molina; tel. 91 366 4217; reservations essential for dinner) This is just off the southwest corner of Plaza Mayor. We got there at 11pm and had no reservations. As the reception desk had just told us that every single table was reserved/occupied a couple just in front of us raised to leave We had a suckling roasted baby pig and a filet mignon aux champignons and spent 8,500ptas. Very extensive menu fitting all tastes. Pictoresque, good service, a ball! Hard on non smokers!
 
Old Jan 30th, 2001, 06:51 AM
  #3  
Paulo
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I posted this upon returning from Madrid in August ...

Restaurant recommendations:

* Taberna del Alabardero (Felipe V 6; Metro Opera; tel. 91 531 6612; reservations recommended for dinner inside) This is next to the Royal Theatre, just off Plazza de Oriente. We went there twice. Once for a tapas dinner outside (with a view of part of the façade of the Royal Palace; 6,000ptas for two) and once for full course dinner inside (about 9,500ptas for two). We didn't reserve but were lucky to get the next to last table for dinner without having to wait. Menu with a bias toward Basque cuisine. Very nice setting and good service. Hard on nonsmokers inside.

*Café del Oriente (Plaza de Oriente 2; Metro Opera; tel. 91 541 3974) We had a tapas lunch outside on exiting the Royal Palace (5,000ptas) and didn't make it back for a planned dinner inside. Very nice setting and good service.
 
Old Jan 30th, 2001, 06:52 AM
  #4  
Paulo
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*Botin (Cuchilleros 17; Metro Opera, Sol or Tirso de Molina; tel. 91 366 4217; reservations essential for dinner) This is just off the southwest corner of Plaza Mayor. We got there at 11pm and had no reservations. As the reception desk had just told us that every single table was reserved/occupied a couple just in front of us raised to leave We had a suckling roasted baby pig and a filet mignon aux champignons and spent 8,500ptas. Very extensive menu fitting all tastes. Pictoresque, good service, a ball! Hard on non smokers!

*Julian de Tolosa (Cava Baja 32; Metro La Latina; tel. 91 365 8210; reservations essential; closed Sunday) We had been there the night before and didn't manage to find a table and reserved for the next day. We had the famous "chuletton madrileño" with a price tag of 10,000ptas. If you don't like medium rare stakes just forget it ... they don't ask you how you want your stake because they're sure they know better. If you ask for a well done stake they'll certainly think (and maybe shout out) "what the hell are you doing here?". Very nice setting, perfect service. Hard on non smokers.
 
Old Jan 30th, 2001, 06:53 AM
  #5  
Paulo
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*La Camarilla (Cava Baja 21; Metro La Latina; tel. 91 354 0207; didn't ask if it closes) We tried this one (which wasn't in our list) when we didn't find a table at the Julian de Tolosa. Price tag of 10,000ptas for a good setting, perfect service and no smoke at all (only thre tables being served at the time, one a couple with a baby). Plate presentation with a French touch (big plates with the entrée artistically disposed in the center ... portions could be somewhat bigger

Except for the tapas dinner at the Alabardero and the dinner at the Botin we went out in two couples. Among other, I had listed Casa Paco, Paradis Madrid, Posada de la Villa and Casa Lucio which were closed in August. On Cava Baja I had listed the Viejo Madrid which was open but the ladies decided for the Camarilla to get a respite from cigarette smoke.

It would be difficult to single one of the above out. Each has its own merits and I would recommend them all. I highly recommend a tour back and forth on Cava Baja up to Puerta Cerrada. There's one restaurant or bar after the other. Outside July/August/Sunday they should be all open. We checked the tapas bar El Soleá (on # 27) and it looked very interesting. On schedulled days outside August they have jazz jam sessions, not so touristy (and expensive) flamenco tablao, etc.

Besides the above, we had a very good and cheap lunch at the Prado and had fun at the Cerveceria Alemana on Plaza Santa Ana (almost a must for youngsters). On Plaza Mayor we weren't so lucky ... the tapas was only so so (don't remember the place we sat down) but people watching was a ball. One day, in the neighborhood of Plaza Canovas del Castillo (Thyssen museum) we had planned to have lunch at Paradis Madrid but it was closed. As we were hungry we just settled for a Taberna next door (reference disapeared) and had a decent menu del dia at very low price.

Paulo
 
Old Jan 30th, 2001, 07:12 AM
  #6  
Paulo
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Excuse me for the duplicate post ...

Regarding night entertainment, it appears that the "Parsilal" opera will be on Saturday, Feb 3rd. at 7pm, in Teatro Real.

Paulo
 
Old Jan 30th, 2001, 02:41 PM
  #7  
Maribel
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Charlie,
Paulo has given you a splendid list of very dependable restaurants (hi, Paulo!). Follow his advice, particularly about walking up and down the Cava Baja. Also great wine bars with fabulous gourmet, creative tapas there like "El Tempranillo" and "La Taberna de los Cien Vinos" around the corner at Nuncio #17, down the street and to the right of Puerta Cerrada.

I'd like to add a few recent discoveries of my own:

"Zerain" (Quevedo #3)-a new Basque cider house, beautifully done on a recently yuppified street in Old Madrid down from the Plaza Santa Ana with two floors of dining, basement is cozier. You can be brave and serve yourself "sidra" from the giant vats in the wall, or if you want to avoid the drippy mess, have the waitress bring you a pitcher. Very hearty Basque country fare; large portions. Packed at mid day with business types and politicians from nearby Parliament.
Lively.

When "Botin" is full, I take guests to
"Casa Lucio" (Cava Baja #35) where few tourists venture in-you may spot royalty or celebs-it's the King's fav. as well as the Griffin/Banderas and Bruce Willis/Bravo duo's (Melanie G
loves the rice pudding)-casually fashionable dress at night-filled with
business types at noon-fabulously fresh fish, great cholesterol laden scrambled eggs with potatoes
("patatas revolconas")-garlic chicken-NOT for those allergic to smoke, however! And upstairs is Siberia.

Another old stand by that's easy on the wallet:
"El Schotis" (Cava Baja #11)-good red meats and roast lamb in a more simple atmosphere, below the "Posada de la Villa"-old timer waiters-pretty murals in upstairs d. room.

A spot for carnivores near the Teatro Real: "El Buey" (Plaza de la Marina Espanola #1)-across from the Senate- noted for its fillet ("lomo de buey") which is served on a sizzling clay platter so that you can cook it to your liking, excellent house red Ribera del Duero wines-everyone orders the same thing, the "lomo de buey", a house salad of tomtoes and onion, fries and homemade lemon sorbet for dessert. But other desserts are great as well (cheesecake, crepes, apple tart, yum...) No space between tables!
Reserve 2 days in advance for weekends, the morning of for weekdays.

Also "Casa Marta", a small Mom and Pop with flair, recommended by NY Times. Caring service. Hard to find. From left side of Teatro Real facing the Opera metro, walk up Calle Vergara past Irish Pub. It's on the corner at Calle Santa Clara.

You can also check on concerts in the weekly "Guia de Ocio". Buy it at the airport or at any newstand (comes out on Thurs.) It lists "what's doing" and also gives restaurant addresses, approximate cost and hours (all in Spanish but easy to figure out).

And have fun!



 
Old Jan 30th, 2001, 03:12 PM
  #8  
Paulo
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Hi Maribel, long time, no hear. It looks like you've been having fun commuting back and forth to Spain
Paulo
 
Old Jan 30th, 2001, 08:31 PM
  #9  
liz
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Charlie, I second Paulo's advice on Botin's. We had a great meal there, everything was perfect, service was amazing,full of atmosphere,and the food was to die for. Have fun, I love Spain and can't wait to go back .
 
Old Jan 31st, 2001, 02:50 AM
  #10  
charlie
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gracias a todos.... que cantidad de informacion!!... les contare como va la vaina!
 
Old Jan 31st, 2001, 04:39 PM
  #11  
michele
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Charlie,
Should you tire of meat or just love fish try La Trainera, Lagasca Tel: 576 05 75. Superb fresh fish in a very modern setting (blond wood, blue tiles). Located in a very chic area of Madrid it appeared to cater to the business set. Not inexpensive, but everything is just excellent. The soup is a meal in itself.
 

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