Decided to leave the house and cross the rubicon of Gran Via to see if a café’s claim, backed up by a friend of mine, that they served the best coffee in Madrid was true. Toma cafè on calle palma. Teeny tiny place which wasn’t helped by a couple of bikes being parked in there. Group of six americans and a trendy japanese couple filling the place meant I had to get my coffee “to go”
Coffee was good and was nice to see those two great nations putting their histories behind them and choosing to ignore each other and enjoy their coffees instead. Best in Madriz? Iunno to be honest, it was good but i made a tactical error and took a cappuccino…think i’d need my usual cortado to truly make a judgement. I should fall on my sword like Brutus.
So, i found myself in a part of town I don’t frequent too much and thought…instead of studying, why don’t I throw lager beer and free tapas down my throat instead? I couldn’t come up with a decent point against this proposal, so that’s what i did.
First stop: La Pomerada
A bit incongruous in an area that would like to think it had its hipness turned up to 11. Asturian place. Marca to read, telly in the corner. Caña for 1,40€ and decent free tapa. There’s a comedor out back and their menu del dìa was advertised at 12€…which ain’t bad for a sunday
Taberna de Abajo
On a street parallel to the last one. Old skool. Barman has no voice. Judging by the silk scarf he wears around his throat, it’s something medical…or he’s very gauche and chooses not to speak. Must be hard in his line of work.. He has crabs too. And clams and percebes. I just got a small plate of crisps as a tapa though. The spanish can’t say “crisps” it’s a consonant cluster which doesn’t occur in spanish…actually,i can’t think of any that do….so it comes out as “crips”….obviously not a worry for our barman as he can’t speak. Caña was 1,40…which ain’t easy when you can only communicate with fingers. I’d be tempted to make them either 1€ or 2€
Bodegas El Maño
An old favourite. Not much to say. Paella as a tapa, 1,40€ for the caña. Couple of decent old skool places on same part of the same street. Possibly my caña goggles had kicked in at this point as was a group of women of a certain age who were very attractive. And i’m almost exactly that age!
Seems to be american run. Doing a roaring trade in brunch and burgers. Mimosas are bucks fizz to us, and they were serving them in jugs. I do approve of that. Caña was 1,40€….but the tapa was mixed nuts! (Add your own ” for fucksake”)
Decided to head back to la republica de lavapiès
Stopped for a drink near anton martin martin. I couldn’t actually remember the name of the bar…but i googled “perroflauta bar anton martin” and it was the first choice…that tells you enough…
Not much to say. Perroflauta is the spanish for crusty. Perro=dog, flauta=recorder. Nice enough in there, though i don’t think i got a tapa.
Not the shit one on cava baja, the one just off the top of calle ave marìa. Turned my nose up at offer of crips or olives as a tapa. Beer goggles fully functional. Fell deeply in love with a woman in a tartan skirt and boots.
An old favourite. Wine bar. Vermouth on tap.
Bar that used to be called los nogales but iunno now
One of the best examples of a shitty old man bar that has been taken over by people with either enough taste or not enough money to fuck it up. Turn the lights down a bit, hummus as a tapa, couple of comfortable chairs, rolling gnomes instead of el fary and bob’s your giddy aunt.
Tapa was russian salad on bread and some olives. Barmaid was doing a good deal of talking to herself. Although she could’ve been talking to my food
Almost home…O’Pazo de Lugo
Opposite my gaff. Inscrutable old gallego barman and to offset that, a very friendly young cuban barman. Prawns always there as a tapa. Neil diamond was playing. Not live, obviously.