How to save on price but not on taste.
It is fair to say that most of the food offered in Madrid is pretty damn good. It is also fair to say that is clearly an understatement; it would be more accurate to say that the food in Madrid is so ludicrously amazing that you wish you have the time, money, and metabolism to sit and gorge yourself all day.
Yet, sadly this gorgeous gourmet food must come at a price, one that can often seem too darn much, especially considering your salary and too-often-ignored budget.
However, have no fear my poor ravenous Madrileños, for help is at hand - there are actually some affordable places to eat in Madrid that will still be of great quality, quantity, nor quintessentially Spanish hospitality. Here are just some of fine dining establishments that will leave you with more than one fine dime in your pockets...
1. The Basque.
The Basque is a quaint little restaurant, nestled in a quiet street in Malasaña, just off Tribunal. Don't let its adorable size fool you however - its portions, as well as its heart, are certainly grande and do not leave you wanting more. Moreover, it is truly excellent food, with succulent meat cooked to how you like, and other great vegan/vegetarian options for your non-meat loving friends out there. To make things even better, they offer a great deal in which you can get a burger, drink, and a dessert all for only €10! As all the food is cracking, and the service is exceptionally good, this is certainly a great place for a meal out, as it is ridiculously good value for money and its quirky style will make your evening there as unique and enjoyable a experience as is a visit to fine Basque country of its namesake.
Address: Calle Colón, 3, 28004 Madrid
2. Subiendo al Sur
This is restaurant with a heart and soul as beautiful as the sunset viewed from el Templo de Debod on a stunningly clear day. Not only do the outstanding angels who run this fair-trade café and shop ensure that you receive great quality food for even better prices, but they are also endeavouring to help the world beyond our fair capital at the same time: all their profits go to good causes, including some charities offering aid to Palestinian children. As everything on the menu costs well-under €10, it is hard not to fall completely and utterly under the charm of the place, particularly as the kindness and charisma of its owners seems to sparkle in every atom contained within the establishment.
Address: Calle de Ponciano, 5, 28015 Madrid,
3. Casa Camacho.
Situated in the hip and happening haven of theMadridleño youth known as Malasaña, this unassuming bar truly reminds us whippersnappers why we should respect our elders, as its still retains its original popularity and excellent standards despite opening almost 90 years ago. Famous for its awesome atmosphere and its iconic vermouth 'yayo', this establishment has used its advanced age to become a sage example of what a good watering-hole should be. Its decision to offer amazingly cheap tapas certainly adds a few wisdom points, as it is incredibly easy to stuff your "not-fat-just-big-boned" face for way under €10. For a gay old time, this fine bar should most definitely be your first port of call.
Address: Calle de San Andrés, 4, 28004 Madrid
4. Casa Julio.
A cosy bar that truly epitomises what is truly great about the Spanish nation: the mesmerising warmth of its glorious gente, as well as the tremendous tapas that they have ever so magnificently mastered. Paying as little as 6€ for multiple plates of tapas and also the much loved Spanish classic of a caña, this magical establishment is particularly worth going to as a group, as splitting the costs per plate of tapas makes these delicious delacies wildly more affordable. One thing that also remains absolutely priceless about this place is its forever roaring atmosphere and the fiery breath it has, constituted of the excited murmuring of local residents. Definitely worth an evening or seven here.
Address: Calle Madera, 37, 28004, Madrid
The only thing more stunning than the hauntingly beautiful and abstract décor of this establishment, to be found right in the heart of Malasaña, is Naif's gorgeous food. Famous for its burgers and sandwiches, this restaurant has mastered the art of creating bread embraced pieces of heaven. As well as being in one of the finest areas of Madrid, Naif cannot help but be admired and adored by so many due to its truly top-notch pricing; there is a wide selection of cracking comida all to be had for under the eponymous €10, often with enough money left over to buy yourself a caña or two. You can't really get more Madrileño than that, can you?
6. El Tigre.
El Tigre is definitely must be one of the most famous and well-loved bars in Madrid with good reason. Their owners are famously friendly and welcoming, always up for a good laugh with their clientele.
And they certainly make sure that you won't leave their establishment hungry or quenching for a cerveza or two - not only are their proportions are so huge that you won't want to eat anything else for days, but they make sure that their darling customers don't have to spend all their pocket money to indulge themselves. With the payment of €2.50 for a large caña, you will receive two large plates of tapas, of your choice, that create a fericiously filling and fiercely great meal worthy of the king you know you are inside. As another famous tiger one said, they're truly grreeat!
Beirut is one of the most well-hidden gems of Madrid, as this fantastic little Lebanese restaurant that has certainly snuggled itself ever so sneakily onto a quiet street in the infamously multicultural barrio of Lavapies. With the excellent and authentic cuisine and décor, there is also the feeling of cohesiveness and sense of togetherness that the brilliant sharing patters and round tables certainly bring to the evening - certainly a place to go with your best buds and darling companions! One thing that certainly aids the feeling of comradery and love for all sentient beings across the globe is its other-worldly good pricing - a shared platter easily fit for four people will only cost €10. That's right, €10. Not each but all-together. As the food is well-suited to vegetarians and vegans (although vegans may need to specify dairy free requests for the shared platters), this is the perfect place to unite all money scrapers of all dietary persuasions.
Now you now where you can enjoy the luxrious lovelies that the forever heart-enrapturing calles of Madrid have in hold for us, all that there is left for me to say is... ¡Buen provecho !