Madrid Restaurants

Spain is an essential foodie pilgrimage, and no city holds a candle to Madrid when it comes to variety of national and international cuisines. Its cutting-edge restaurants helmed by celebrated chefs make the city one of Europe's most renowned dining capitals.

When it comes to dining, younger madrileños gravitate toward trendy neighborhoods like bearded-and-bunned Malasaña, gay-friendly Chueca, rootsy La Latina, and multicultural Lavapiés for their boisterous and affordable restaurants and bars. Dressier travelers, and those visiting with kids, will feel more at home in the quieter, more buttoned-up restaurants of Salamanca, Chamartín, and Retiro. Of course, these are broad-brush generalizations, and there are plenty of exceptions.

The house wine in old-timey Madrid restaurants is often a sturdy, uncomplicated Valdepeñas from La Mancha. A plummy Rioja or a gutsy Ribera del Duero—the latter from northern Castile—are the usual choices for reds by the glass in chicer establishments, while popular whites include fruity Verdejo varietals from Rueda and slatey albariños from Galicia After dinner, try the anise-flavored liqueur (anís), produced outside the nearby village of Chinchón, or a fruitier patxaran, a digestif made with sloe berries.

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  • 1. Bar Santurce

    $ | Lavapiés | Spanish

    This abuelo bar near the top of the Rastro is famous for grilled sardines, blistered Padrón peppers, and fried calamari. ...Read More

  • 2. Bodega de la Ardosa

    $ | Malasaña | Spanish

    A 19th-century bodega, with barrel tables and dusty gewgaws hanging from the walls, Bodega de la Ardosa is an anachronism in Malasaña, an...Read More

  • 3. Casa Alberto

    $$ | Barrio de las Letras | Spanish

    Enter through the firetruck-red facade of this 193-year-old bar and restaurant and be blown away by impeccably executed fried bacalao (cod...Read More

  • 4. Casa Gerardo

    $$ | La Latina | Spanish

    Huge tinajas , clay vessels once filled to the brim with bulk wine (yet now defunct), sit behind the bar at this raucous, no-frills bodega...Read More

  • 5. La Castela

    $$ | Retiro | Spanish

    Traditional taverns with tin-top bars, vermouth on tap, and no-nonsense waiters are a dying breed in Madrid, but this one, just a couple of...Read More

  • 6. Casa Botín

    $$$ | La Latina | Spanish

    According to Guinness World Records , Madrid is home to the world’s oldest restaurant, Botín, established in 1725 and a favorite of Ernest...Read More

  • 7. Casa Paco

    $$$ | La Latina | Steakhouse

    Packed with madrileños downing Valdepeñas wine, this Castilian tavern, with its zinc-top bar and tiled walls, wouldn't have looked out of place...Read More

  • 8. Cervecería Cervantes

    $ | Barrio de las Letras | Spanish

    Cervecería Cervantes is an improbably down-to-earth neighborhood bar—the type where you throw your olive pits and napkins right onto the floor...Read More

  • 9. El Landó

    $$$ | La Latina | Spanish

    This castizo ("rootsy") restaurant, with dark wood-paneled walls lined with bottles of wine, serves classic Spanish food like huevos estrellados...Read More

  • 10. El Pescador

    $$$ | Salamanca | Seafood

    Owned by the proprietors of the best fish market in town, this seafood restaurant with a warm modern interior welcomes guests with an impressive...Read More

  • 11. El Rincón de Marco

    $ | Lavapiés | Cuban

    Step straight into Havana at this hidden Cuban bar and restaurant where rumbas and sones flow from the speakers and regulars burst into...Read More

  • 12. Gourmet Experience Callao

    $ | Sol | International

    On the rooftop of El Corte Inglés, Spain’s largest department store, there's a gourmet food court with some of the best views in the city. Grab...Read More

  • 13. La Bola

    $$ | Palacio | Spanish

    La Bola is renowned for its cocido madrileño, a soul-satisfying chickpea and meat stew, and for its decor, which has hardly changed a lick since...Read More

  • 14. La Horizontal

    $$ | Spanish

    Away from town and surrounded by trees in what used to be a mountain cabin, this family-oriented restaurant is coveted by madrileños, who come...Read More

  • 15. Mercado de la Reina

    $$ | Chueca | Spanish

    Perhaps the only worthwhile tapas restaurant on Gran Vía, Madrid's main commercial artery, Mercado de la Reina serves everything from croquetas...Read More

  • 16. Mercado de San Antón

    $$ | Chueca | International

    Following the successful transformation of the Mercado de San Miguel, near the Plaza Mayor, the city completely refurbished this old neighborhood...Read More

  • 17. Mercado de San Miguel

    $$ | Sol | International

    Adjacent to the Plaza Mayor, this "gastronomic market" is a feast for the senses. Its bustling interior—a mixture of tapas spots and immaculately...Read More

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  • 18. Taberna Almendro 13

    $ | La Latina | Spanish

    Getting a weekend seat in this rustic old favorite is a feat, but drop by any other time and you'll be served ample, stick-to-your-ribs raciones...Read More

  • 19. Taberna de la Dolores

    $ | Barrio de las Letras | Spanish

    A lively corner bar with a colorful tiled facade, this is a solid spot for a cold beer and a quick bite after visiting the nearby museums. Try...Read More

  • 20. Txirimiri

    $$ | La Latina | Spanish

    One of four branches in a beloved local chain, this perennially packed Basque tapas spot is famous for its Unai slider, fried in tempura and...Read More

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