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Eating in Madrid

I am looking for eating recommendations in the area between Palacio Real/Catedral de la Almudena and San Francisco El Grande/Iglesia de San Andres. Segovia Street has a lot of eateries. But I want sure bet, inexpensive places for an authentic local breakfast, lunch, snack, including cafes and bakeries. (I know about Mercado San Miguel and will go there but I want some other options).


Posted by
12154 posts

I thought eating in Madrid was some of the worst, in terms of authentic local inexpensive places, in Spain. Most places weren't that good and were expensive to boot.

Check out Calle Cave de San Miguel at about the southwest corner of the Plaza Mayor. The cave restaurants are there, we didn't think they were special but there were a few little places that served beer and food across the street from them.

Our favorite place was the Bull Bar Rick suggests inside Plaza Mayor (on the north side of the square). Our bill was too much for what we got however. We met a couple from Mexico city there. They did much better by just ordering drinks, they give you a small plate with each drink (we ordered food and drinks and spent twice as much).

Everywhere else we went was expensive and bad, so we ended up finding a grocery store and making our own.

Posted by
3956 posts

Maribel is good on Spanish restaurants, in Madrid and elsewhere. Her guide may help you avoid the unhappy experiences of the previous poster.
If you have been to Spain before you will know that breakfast is not a big deal and the central meal of the day is consumed quite late. Anyhow, there is no "sure bet" anywhere when you are a visitor, and especially not when attached to inexpensive and authentic. Each to his own taste, as the old saying goes.

Posted by
6929 posts

This past November, we stayed for a week at an apartment less than a 5-minute walk from the Palacio Real, and the neighborhood restaurant, recommended by the apartment owner, is Taberna Rayuela, at Calle Moreria No. 8. We went there 3 times. They're open for lunch and dinner, but I don't think they serve breakfast (we always had breakfast in our apartment). Good food, with some international inspirations, tapas, and full meals. Very affordable, especially compared with other places in Madrid. They're one block east of Calle Bailen, the main drag that runs the length of the palace/cathedral, and about 3 blocks south of the palace, at the south end of the viaduct. Their Spanish Website is @

Posted by
1186 posts

I might be late to help. We spent 8 or 9 days in Madrid. Two short stays one at each end of our trip. I must say, go to Rayuelas. Or how ever that other person spelled it. Excellent. Head south from the Palacio Real, past the cathedral, cross the viaduct and turn to your left. It is your first left. It will be the first building on your left as you go down hill. I think the name is on the side of the building facing you as you approach.

Excellent prices, a diverse menu, good service, and wonderful food. We ate there three nights in a row. I'd go back tonight if I were n't in central Wisconsin.

And the toilets are first class. My wife was shocked to find hot water, toilet paper, hand towels, soap, and I forget what else, but all in one place. If she is happy, I am happy.

Beef cheeks in a wine reduction...nice. A couple fish offerings. 10 Really nice racions (large tapas, of which I tried four or five). Tomato and mozarella with balsamic vinegar salad maybe designed to be shared, but I ate it all. Sally had a chicken salad, again, maybe to be shared...she ate it all. An 'Arab' type of chicken wrapped in filo dough. Really, there is something for everyone at this place. Kitchen usually opens at 8:30, 20:30.

Just one step off the tourist path and that is what makes the difference.

Gosh, now I am hungry.

wayne iNWI

Posted by
1895 posts

Some more options

Take advantages of the nenu del dia for almuerzo(lunch) for around 12 euros you can usually have an appetizer-main course, dessert and wine. If you are near the Prado, Terra Mundi is a Galician restaurant with homestyle food. Nothing fancy but filling and frequented by locals.

For a bakery, nothing beats the pastries at La Mallorquina-right next to the Puerta del Sol. I used to go here in the mornings and eat my cafe con leche and croissant at the bar. It's cheap and well loved by the locals.

Posted by
179 posts

Inexpensive and easy:

Mercado La Paz - try the incredible croquetas at Le Croquette inside of the market; you can buy delicious tortilla and roasted chicken here too.

Wok to Walk - for a quick and satisfying noodle stir-fry.

100 Montaditos - for a quick and inexpensive snack try two or three sandwiches with chips and a glass of tint de verano.

Cafe at La Central - not cheap but a nice cafe within a bookstore with some inexpensive options and delicious white chocolate mousse.

La Fabrica Cafe near Atocha for a nice meal at a moderate price.

La Mallorquina was good for Napolitanos in ham & cheese, chocolate or vanilla custard.

La Musa in Plaza de la Paja was a good moderate find and a nice place to sit both indoors and out.

Miss Sushi is a silly splurge but fun if you are traveling with girls who like pink and sushi.

In Panis in Chueca has good empanadas.