No matter where in Spain you are planning to visit on your holiday, tapas is one thing that you absolutely have to try. Ordering a host of small dishes and sharing them among friends, while drinking some sangria or wine, is one of the quintessential Spanish experiences.
As the capital city, Madrid is a wonderful place to come for a holiday thanks to its plethora of artistic, cultural and historical attractions, not to mention its cosmopolitan vibe and bustling nightlife. Naturally, the city is home to numerous tapas bars – we’re going to talk you through a few of the best, as well as give you some tips for making the most of your tapas.
One of the best pieces of advice when it comes to eating tapas is to get stuck in. You don’t need to stand on ceremony with this kind of food – and you can certainly mix your dishes if you want. As it’s usually eaten with friends, it’s an incredibly sociable meal and a fantastic way to sample a host of authentic Spanish flavours in one go.
In fact, the next tip is to be adventurous – tapas is designed to be served in small portions, so you can order some of your favourites along with a few bits and pieces you may never have tried before. If you don’t like them, chances are someone else will.
You should also check whether you actually need to pay for tapas – in some bars, little plates of tasty snacks will be provided free of charge. Of course, this means you won’t have the same level of choice as you would if you were ordering and paying, but it’s a brilliant way to sample tapas like the locals and stave off hunger along the way.
Where to go for tapas
There are, unsurprisingly, lots of tapas bars in Madrid, so you won’t be short of choice if you want to sample this quintessential Spanish meal during your holiday in the capital. The following are a few of the best places, but they are by no means the only ones you should consider.
Bodega de la Ardosa – This is one of Madrid’s classic spots for tapas and, having been here for over a century, the pedigree of Bodega de la Ardosa speaks for itself. Step inside and you’ll be greeted by a cosy interior where the drinks flow freely and the tapas tastes amazing.
Taberna Tempranillo – The first thing that will strike you about Taberna Tempranillo is the vast rack of Spanish wines behind the bar. Choose your tipple from its extensive selection and then sit back and enjoy the delicious tapas on offer. It gets busy here, so it’s sensible to arrive close to 8pm, when the bar opens, if you want to get a seat.
Vi Cool – Vi Cool isn’t a standard tapas bar, what’s on offer here is gourmet tapas that uses many of the staple Spanish ingredients in an inventive way. Catalan chef Sergi Arola has certainly put his mark on the menu. The interior is cool and chic, without being overly showy – and it attracts Madrid’s trendy crowd once the sun goes down.
Regardless of what food you want to sample during your trip to Madrid, make sure you get the best deal on your accommodation so you have plenty of spare cash to enjoy all that this vibrant city has to offer. Hotelopia is a good place to look for top deals.