Top Tapas Bars in Madrid
When you think of Spanish food you instantly conjure up the image of tapas, small delicious mouthfuls of Mediterranean vegetables, cured meats, fresh bread and cheeses. The modern tapas provide customers with a wide range of traditional Spanish delicacies to enjoy, so you can really experience all of the different tastes on offer. An increasingly popular way of allowing customers to choose their dishes is to have them on display behind glass cabinets, ideal for those who can’t read the menu or are ensure of what to choose.
The large family style dining encourages a sociable, fun atmosphere and if you are travelling alone or in small groups it can be the ideal way to meet new people. All Madrid locals have their favourite haunts, whether it be the place they always go to for a morning coffee, a lunchtime bite to eat or a bottle of wine in the evening, there is a tapas bar suited to every taste and possible need. Here is a roundup of my top 5 in the city although as you wonder through the cobblestoned streets you are sure to stumble across plenty of your own when visiting Madrid.
Situated in Hotel NH Paseo Del Prado, Estado Puro offers innovative, exquisite food in chic, contemporary surroundings. It serves up the traditional mixed with a cutting edge flair, even a tortilla Espanola here, the thick potato omelette that is a staple of all Tapas menus comes in a glass and is known as the 21st Century Tortilla. Presented in a deconstructed form of its comfort food origins, in this dish a warm egg yolk and sautéed onions sit beneath a blanket of creamy potato. The potato aioli here looks more like a work of art and the humble club sandwich is even presented as a gravity defying spiral. The creator of all this original cuisine is well known Madrilenian chef Paco Roncero, who is also the head chef at Michelin-starred Madrid Restaurant La Terraza del Casino. He is one of a growing number of inspiring Spanish chefs turning their attentions towards tapas. Prices range from around 2€ for a small bite to 12€ for something more substantial, a taster session can be booked at 45€ a head at the chefs table which seats 6 – 8 people that allows guests the chance to try the best tapas dishes on offer.
La Perejila’s small entrance is easy to miss despite it being bright green in colour. Inside the interiors match the bright green entrance and flamenco memorabilia hangs on the walls, the friendly staff and lively atmosphere make La Perejila perfect for a great night out. Popular with the bohemian crowd the bar is great for enjoying a glass of cava in the evening along with the tapas specialities of salmorejo, a refreshing soup similar to a gazpacho or if you require something a little more filling opt for the toast topped with warm goats cheese and sobrassado, a cured pork. The vibrant atmosphere and great food makes this a fun packed venue for balmy Spanish evenings.
In complete contrast to its adjoining contemporary dining area, the bar area of La Camarilla offers delicious tapas in a quintessentially Spanish setting. Bistro tables and worn terra cotta tiles make this the perfect place to stop for a spot of a traditional Spanish breakfast of coffee and toast with tomatoes and olive oil. At night the bar comes to life with live music of funk, house and jazz along with an extensive selection of Spanish wines and tapas treats including sautéed mushrooms topped with peppers and salmon rolls filled with scallops and béchamel sauce. La Camarilla is the perfect place to enjoy a night of delicious food, fine wine and great music until the early hours of the morning.
For many Madrileños the search for modern tapas at a good price ends at Lateral, with several locations throughout the city that are ideally located for those just wishing to stop by for something tasty. If can be best to plan ahead at Lateral as the young and fashionable head here in their droves to enjoy the light dishes which are full of flavour. Specialities include, warm salad with grilled eggplant, caramelized red onions and goats cheese and salmon rolls filled with an unusual combination of cream cheese and caramelized apples. The perfect place to see and be seen in Madrid and the ideal stop off point during a hard
days shopping in the capital.
This post has been written by Rebecca Kelly of Simonseeks.com
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