Restaurants in Madrid

Long best known for its traditional Madrileño cuisine, the capital has seen a wave of more adventurous restaurants open recently. Try the smaller tascas (tapas bars) for regional specialities. Major international cuisines can also be found in a variety of outlets, but head to Lavapiés for the most authentic Asian and other non-European cuisine.

The Madrid restaurants below have been grouped into three pricing categories:
Expensive (over €90)
Moderate (€40 to €90)
Cheap (up to €40)
These Madrid restaurant prices are for an average three-course meal for one including half a bottle of house wine or cheapest equivalent; they do not include tax or tip.

Tipping is not customary in Spain, and service charges vary from establishment to establishment. At smaller venues, simply leaving the small change is acceptable.


Price: Expensive
Cuisine: Spanish/haute cuisine

In the heart of the affluent Chamberi district, Hortensio's dim-lit interior of wooden floors and exposed brickwork make it ideal for a special occasion. Expect the full waiter treatment, exquisite wines (try the Picarana) and exquisite gastronomy courtesy of chef Mario Vallés. From oysters served in zesty sauce and caviar on a poached egg and bed of boletus mushrooms - brought to your table with bell-glass on top to keep the aroma in - Hortensio is high-end. Be sure to try the tender squab, as well as the foie gras served with a caramelised a tropical fruit called lulo.

Address: Calle del Marqués del Riscal 5, Chamberi, Madrid, Spain
Telephone: +39 910 023 554.

Restaurante Zalacain

Price: Expensive
Cuisine: Traditional

Probably the best-known restaurant in the city, and certainly the one where people go to be seen. It is a suitably elegant affair, and serves classic nouveau cuisine. The tasting menu is as formidable as the wine list, but both are worth exploring. Foie gras, caviar and truffles are likely to feature heavily, depending on the season. Keep an eye out for the great and the good - regular diners include King Juan Carlos I and Queen Sofía, plus politicians and Nobel Prize winners.

Address: Alvárez de Baena 4, Madrid, Spain
Telephone: +39 91 561 4840.

La Terraza del Casino

Price: Expensive
Cuisine: Catalan

Paco Roncero is the creative brain behind this Michelin-starred eatery. Booking early is essential with one of Spain's best chefs at the helm. Experimentation in the style of Catalan Ferran Adriá is the order of the day. Expect foams and unusual combinations of flavour – an experience unlike most 'normal' restaurants.

Address: Calle Alzala 15, Madrid, Spain
Telephone: +39 915 321 275.

Sala de Despiece

Price: Moderate
Cuisine: Spanish/haute cuisine

With an interior designed to evoke a classic butcher shop, Sala de Despiece might not look like an option, yet people book weeks ahead to try its inventive menu. Dishes not to miss include the tender artichokes served with morsels of eel and a stracciatella-cheese dip, and the melt-in-the-mouth octopus in a rich sauce of onion and peppers.

Address: Calle de Ponzano 11, Chamberi, Madrid, Spain
Telephone: +39 91 752 61 06.


Price: Moderate
Cuisine: Peruvian/International

One of the most original new restaurants in Madrid is /M, serving “international cuisine with a Peruvian DNA” according to co-owner Santiago Vidal. With one long, jagged table running down the middle, plus food preparation counters stationed intermittently along it, this is an unusual-looking place. But it's the food that really startles. From the Thai-style ceviche with fish, peanuts, cucumber and avocado in coconut milk, to the Gyoza dumplings filled with carnitas (pork), the menu is a delightful melange. Be sure to try the Pisco sours – you'll need something to cut through after such a feast.

Address: Calle Libertad 5, Chueca, Madrid, Spain
Telephone: +39 916 68 46 78.


Price: Moderate
Cuisine: Spanish

Claiming to be the oldest restaurant in the world, Botín first opened its doors below the Plaza Mayor in 1725, and has been keeping diners happy ever since. The wonderful old dining rooms retain the original painted tiles, oak beams and wood-burning oven. Traditional Castilian dishes are the speciality here - the roast suckling pig and the tender Aranda lamb are delicious. Reservations are strongly advised, as it is very popular.

Address: Calle Cuchilleros 17, Madrid, Spain
Telephone: +39 91 366 4217.

Casa Lucio

Price: Cheap
Cuisine: Spanish

One of the city's most famous eateries, it is not unusual to find a famous person eating at Casa Lucio despite the relative lack of glamorous décor. Situated in La Latina, one of the oldest areas of Madrid, the restaurant has established itself as the place to eat huevos estrellados con patatas (essentially a fried egg atop chips and often ham) since opening in the 1950s. Other dishes include local staple cocido madrileño (chick pea stew), callos (stewed cow stomach in spicy sauce), oxtails, freshly made croquettes and baby eel.

Address: Cava Baja 35, Madrid, Spain
Telephone: +39 91 365 8217.

La Galette 2

Price: Cheap
Cuisine: Spanish/Vegetarian

One of the best things about this vegetarian restaurant (whose location has recently changed) is that carnivores are catered for too. From the extensive list of imaginatively prepared vegetable, rice and pasta dishes, try the delicious tartar de chicle (cauliflower cheese with a dusting of fresh herbs), followed by apple croquettes. Diners sit elbow-to-elbow in the two small rooms, decked out in a country-kitchen style.

Address: Calle Barbara de Braganza 10, Madrid, Spain
Telephone: +39 913 08 54 13.

La Buganvilla

Price: Cheap
Cuisine: Spanish

Enjoy Spanish and general Mediterranean dishes cooked with flair at this stylish but great value-for-money restaurant, particularly the rice-based dishes. Tuck into paella served with lobster, seafood or meat amid subtle nautical-themed surroundings. It might look formal, but it's hard to find paellas this good for the price.

Address: Calle Almagro 12, Madrid, Spain
Telephone: +39 91 319 7550.
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