Line Your Stomach in Madrid’s Best Restaurants
If you’re planning on enjoying the best of Madrid’s incredible nightlife, then it’s a good idea to make sure you’ve lined your stomach first. A hearty dinner will keep you fuelled for a whole night of dancing and it’s a great way to catch up with friends before the loud music.
Whilst Madrid is famous for its huge number of unique bars, the dining scene is certainly not to be sniffed at! These are some of Madrid’s best restaurants for a meal out with friends, with an option to suit all budgets.
Tapas at Casa Camacho – Low Budget
Not only is this little bar located in the super popular area of Malasaña, it’s also seriously reasonably priced. When you see the prices of the beer and wine, it’ll be no surprise to you that it’s been a local favourite for decades (their decor doesn’t seem to have changed too much since it opened in 1928). If you fancy a tipple with your dinner then their speciality is called a ‘yayos’ and comprises gin, vermouth and soda water – it’s refreshing, but don’t have too many!
In terms of dinner, they have a short but sweet tapas menu, which includes some regional staples. Patatas Bravas are a dish that appears on almost every tapas menu, but are so rarely cooked just right. Here, the potatoes are fried until golden and crisp and the tomato sauce is rich and spicy, you can tell it’s simmered for a long time. Marinated fish are also popular, with anchovies and tuna being the stars of the show. If you really want something filling then try an omelet with Spanish cured ham, or melted cheese.
Buffet Cubik at Casino Gran Madrid – Mid Range
If you’re looking for somewhere sophisticated and stylish to eat out before you make your way to the clubs then Casino Gran Madrid could be a great option. As well as providing a glitzy backdrop and plenty of after dinner entertainment, the menu here is absolutely delicious.
As with most casinos, in order to feel comfortable on the floor, there are some basic etiquette rules to follow, so remember to dress smartly and if you make your way to the games later then keep some change for tipping.
Much as the backdrop here suggests that the prices are going to be sky-high, this buffet-style menu is surprisingly affordable. It’s also not a buffet as you’d traditionally think of it. The dishes here have been tweaked and preened until they are just perfect, the customers of the casino are discerning and the level of the food on offer echoes this.
Interestingly just out of town in Torredolones, they also have a fine dining menu at their ‘Zero’ restaurant which is truly delicious, though comes at an understandably higher price point.
Tasting Menu at El Club Allard – Special Occasion
This restaurant opened back in 1999 as a private club, but since then it has won itself a name as some of the finest food in Madrid, no mean feat considering the fierce competition. El Club Allard has earned two Michelin stars for its creative flair and commitment to seasonal produce.
There are always two tasting menus to choose from, the Gourmet menu is lengthy comprising of at least 8 courses and often more depending on the time of year, the other menu is named after the season and is a little less gargantuan at around 6 courses. Wine pairing is an option with both menus and there are some unusual but exquisite selections.
Some of the highlights of the menus are the fish dishes. Making the most of everything the Mediterranean Sea has to offer, Chef José Carlos Fuentes expertly prepares fish as commonplace as squid and scallops, but combines them with the exotic flavours of yuzu and dill in a way that is comfortingly familiar, but at the same time exciting and new to the palette.
Visiting El Club Allard is truly an experience that can never be forgotten.