To feel like an authentic “gato” from Madrid it’s best to know what’s genuine in the bars they frequent. But don’t think there are only stale places anchored in the past or full of tourists. I’m going to tell you the new taverns of Madrid for you to have a vermouth, the way it should be enjoyed, where you eat one of the best stews in the city, or all of a sudden it’s 8 in the evening. when all you wanted was just to have the appetizer. All yours!
In Retiro there are many elegant places, but few that combine style and that air of Madrid establishments that makes tapas taste better. In the bar you can ask for torreznos, patatas bravas, tripe or morro; but also “dim sum de txangurro” or “oxtail with curry”. It is one of the new taverns of Madrid with a wine list almost as extensive as the dishes. Afterwards, you will appreciate that the Parque de El Retiro is nearby for the food to settle…
Here there is no tricks or cardboard:they only serve stew, with all its variants. Stew croquettes, soup, chickpeas pedrosillanos and meats. And for dessert, the traditional Spanish “fried milk” and fruit salad. No, it is not a light menu, but it is much easier to digest as they reduce the fat of the dishes to the minimum expression. This way you can try the most typical Madrid cuisine without having to take a nap two hours later … One of the most surprising new taverns of Madrid.
If you don’t think there a good place at Gran Vía to drink vermouth, it’s because you don’t know this place with large windows. On your rubber and Duralex tablecloths you can have a cup of cooked broth, but its top offering is the “chicken potty breaded with kikos”. Although many begin to have a vermouth, they end up still being there at 6 in the evening. I do not know if it’s a “neo-tavern”, a “gastro-bar” or a bar of all life revisited; What’s certain is that it’s one of the new traditional taverns of Madrid where you will suck your fingers.
If to you a traditional bar is one of those that has many preserves, this one will love you. More than 20 different types of cans and canned food, but they also have a “cazuelita del día” for you to get warm: peas with ham and eggs, legumes with chorizo, or chickpeas with chorizo. She is the little sister of La Revoltosa, but here there are more than 30 gins to soak the afternoons in the Plaza del Rey. And of course they have a siphon, the essential complement to their formula of the perfect vermouth.
Malasaña is not only the neighborhood with more places per square meter to eat baos, it’s also where one of the new traditional taverns of Madrid that best reinterprets the tradition. Want some examples? Order your “cocido with foie” stuff or the “pickled chicken” with cooked broth and you’ll agree. In addition, vermouth from the tap and a good cold Mahou welcome anyone who wants to feel like another “gato”.
The old partners of the Nasti, which was one of the most legendary indie venues in Madrid, have returned to the fray by reopening the old premises of the Recio family. It’s a very neighborhood place, with good cuisine to eat with friends, and of course to enjoy the vermouth. The menu is simple and based on the fillet, from the Russian steak to the gourmet sandwich, even in its vegetarian version. Here there is little posture; what there is, though, is laughter and a good time on weekends. Come on, this is one of the new traditional taverns of Madrid that best maintains the tradition for the new generations ;-).
Inside the recently refurbished Hotel Regina, this modern but authentic restaurant maintains the simple flavors in life. Squid sandwiches with aioli or “callos a la madrileña” are its most traditional dishes, but they don’t stop there. As you already know, in Madrid the Spanish and the international coexist, and their “French mussels” is a good example of this. And everyone likes the cocktails of Carlos Moreno.
After several years being a celtic tavern, the boys from Triciclo have returned their original character to this place on Santa María Street. One of the new traditional taverns of Madrid, with quality food that can be ordered in half portions format. They have gildas and aubergines from Almagro, pork rinds and oysters, although their specialty is tiger mussels. They are not cheap, but on weekends they fill the seafood bar to make a memorable tapas.
If you visit any of these new taverns castizas of Madrid, you will realize why the most typical of Madrid does not go out of style. In fact, many famous chefs even with a Michelin star like Coque Conow how to extract the most interesting from the tradition and make it avant-garde. That’s why, whether it’s visiting hundred-years-old restaurants or my favourite vermouth bars of Madrid, you’ll feel like another “gato”.
Translated by Story Of Madrid, the podcast about Madrid in English.