Centuries-old culinary- and spirits-focused history as well as newer concepts from young, forward-thinking restaurateurs, intertwine to create endless memorable dining and drinking experiences throughout Madrid. From Michelin-starred restaurants and cozy taverns to trendy bars, we’ve compiled a definitive guide to ensure discerning travelers savor the best of Madrid’s food and beverage scene.
For Coffee & Pastries:
Innovative flavors and traditional backing techniques collide at Acid Bakehouse. Artisanal breads such as house loaves of brioche, sourdough, and baguettes are available, and their bagels and sandwiches have grown in popularity–especially the Grilled Cheese with Kimchi. French- and Swedish-inspired pastries such as Pain Au Chocolat and Cardamom Bullar make the perfect companion to espressos or lattes.
Alma Nomad Bakery is a favorite among Madrid locals for its aesthetically pleasing interiors and downright delicious pastries. Their innovative baked goods mesh brioche, poppy seeds, fresh fruits, and scones into sweet morning delights. From the Apricot Frangipane Tart to the picturesque Meringue, we’re dying to try every treat on the menu.
For Authentic Eateries:
Embedded in the vibrant Huertas neighborhood core, Ferretería is an old yet revived hardware store that’s celebrated as one of the best restaurants in Madrid. Enjoy Spanish cuisine classics — including Iberian ham assortments and variations of vermú (a traditional Spanish white wine typically fortified with herbs, spices, and botanicals) — while taking in this true-to-form rustic shop.
Formaje is an elevated cheese shop upstairs with an exclusive tasting room tucked downstairs in Madrid’s Chamberí neighborhood. The current craftsmanship of cheesemaking is placed on full display, featuring both classic and avant-garde Spanish cheese variations. (We were most excited about sampling the Manchego — and it tasted better than we could’ve imagined.)
The rich tapestry of Spanish cuisine lives on at Restaurante Casa Salvador through time-honored recipes and warm hospitality. Photographs and paintings tell tales of decades past, all dedicated to a time when matadores were the most elite celebrity. With a legacy spanning over a century, this iconic restaurant continues to captivate travelers and celebrities alike (their rabo de toro (oxtail stew) was Anthony Bourdain’s favorite in the city).
For Cocktail Hour:
When Diego Cabrera opened Salmón Gúru in 2016, just as salmon swim against the current, he set out to disrupt the status quo of Madrid’s cocktail culture. This cocktail bar and lounge stimulates each sense with neon-clad ceilings, pop-art sketches, kitschy curtains and sofas, and an array of cocktails that are more akin to sippable works of art. Salmón Gúru is recognized as one of the World’s 50 Best Bars and is a winner of the 2021 Michter’s Art of Hospitality Award.
Huddled within the Mercado de San Fernando in Madrid’s Lavapiés barrio is the hidden gem Benditos, Vinos y Vinilos. This hidden gem is the brainchild of a group of young Spaniards determined to share the stories of small-batch biodynamic and natural wines from small winemakers around Spain and beyond.
Tucked behind the tourist-run Gran Vía, Angelita is owned by brothers David and Mario Villalon. The upstairs main dining room serves meat and vegetable-forward dishes with produce from the family’s farm. Pair meals with one of the 500-plus wines from untapped regions, or head downstairs to the cocktail bar and lounge for standout sips.
For Vermouth Tastings:
Tucked within the lobby of Rosewood Villa Magna, Tarde.O is the hotel’s dedicated bar and lounge. Designed to evoke a convivial English club, guests are encouraged to enjoy the carefully selected Spanish vermouths through a special tasting of three negronis, guided by expert mixologists and paired with traditional tapas.
Chocolatería San Ginés has been serving irresistible churros dipped in chocolate since 1894. Preparing the churros with a traditional Spanish technique called “a hombre,” these lightly sugar-coated crispy treats are a must-try when visiting Madrid.
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