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Looking for an awesome food tour in Madrid? Look no further.
We love to travel and we love to eat. In addition to having visited over 90 countries, we’ve done almost 60 food tours in 25 countries, and there’s no better way to get to know a culture than through its cuisine. Spain is an amazing country for foodies, and Madrid has numerous restaurants and food markets to explore.
Food tours in Madrid offer you a chance to sample the best of the city’s cuisine. Here we share with you three terrific food tours we have taken that will allow you to experience traditional Spanish dishes and popular street food in Madrid and learn a little about the history and culture of the city.
The Madrid Food Scene
From iconic restaurants to street food stands, Madrid is a food lover’s paradise. Known for its traditional Spanish cuisine, it has a rich culinary heritage and vibrant street food scene. From traditional Spanish dishes to trendy new eateries, there’s something for everyone.
#1: Ultimate Spanish Cuisine Tour of Madrid – Devour Tours
There were six of us, along with our guide Mitzi, and we started exactly where we hoped we’d start: Chocolat, for churros and chocolate. This is the traditional Spanish breakfast. Churros in Spain are not as sweet as those in the US or Mexico, and they are simple, not coated in sugar and cinnamon, so that you can then dip them in rich molten chocolate. We had the skinnier churros rather than the thicker porras we’d had at San Ginés, the most famous purveyor of churros in Madrid. We found the porras at San Ginés more flavorful, but we preferred the thicker, richer chocolate here at Chocolat. Delicious!
Our next stop was at a Galician bakery called MOEGA in Barrio de Las Letras. Here we sampled sourdough preñaos, mini loaves of bread stuffed with chorizo. They were tasty, warm and very savory with just the right amount of spicy grease.
Then it was on to Mercado Antón Martín for tastings of 6-7 different olives, Spanish olive oil, Iberian ham, a fresh strawberry from the market, a boquerón (anchovy) in vinegar with potato chips (a lovely salty, savory bite), and a nice vermouth drink – Madrid’s favorite drink which you will see everywhere.
Other stops within Mercado Antón Martín:
Casa Gonzalez – Sells regional cheeses, wines and delicatessen products. They served us four types of cheeses plus a red and a white wine.
La Revuelta – They are purveyors of really excellent warm savory croquetas with creamy fillings. We tried one salt cod and one ham.
La Campaña – Their specialty is the bocadillo de calamares, or fried calamari sandwich. The trick is to have tender lightly-fried calamari and a crusty sourdough bun. This was tasty.
Confitería El Riojano – We sampled Ponche Segoviano, a traditional Spanish cake originating from Segovia. This is a layer cake of custard and marzipan that is topped with caramelized sugar, which we enjoyed with coffee.
#2: Gourmet Tapas & Local Neighborhoods – AirBnB Experience
For this food tour in Madrid, we met our guide Andrea near the Opera metro stop, then we headed to the Chocolatería San Ginés for churros and chocolate. Always a great way to start the day! Then we explored the area around Plaza Mayor.
Our next stop was the Mercado de San Miguel, one of the first gourmet markets in Spain. Built in 1916, it was originally a wholesale food market, but in recent years it has been transformed into a lively indoor market for food lovers. The interior is packed with dozens of vendors offering an array of gourmet food and drinks. You can find everything from fresh seafood, meats, fruits and vegetables, to cheeses, chocolates, tapas and wines from all over Spain.
We stopped at La Hora de Vermut for a tapa called a “gilda” and a delicious vermouth drink. The gilda is a skewer containing meats, peppers and olives. We also tried mild green manzanilla olives that are so simple and flavorful. They use a lye solution to remove the bitterness before naturally fermenting them in salty water, and they taste so different from the jarred green olives in the U.S.
Then we headed to the La Latina neighborhood, an important area to better understanding Madrid. We visited the Mercado La Cebada, one of Madrid’s largest markets, where we learned about Spanish products and tasted a red wine and some varieties of goat, sheep and cow’s cheese. Spain is ranked second in the world in wine production, but also has lovely hams, cheeses, olives and olive oils.
Last, we explored the Lavapiés neighborhood before ending in the Mercado Antón Martín with a glass of cava and a tapa. We ended our food tour in the heart of Barrio de las Letras.
#3: Cook Your Own Tapas in Madrid (with Endless Wine) – AirBnB Experience
Our third food tour in Madrid wasn’t technically a food tour, but it was such a great experience that we had to share. If you’re seeking an unparalleled culinary experience in Madrid, look no further than this cooking class hosted by Alex at The Cooking Clubhouse. Led by professional chefs, you’ll embark on a gastronomic journey across Spain, where you’ll learn how to create four authentic and tasty tapas, each from a different region of Spain.
We made a chorizo dish, garlic shrimp, baked stuffed peppers, and mussels (we made asparagus instead, because of an allergy.)
The evening starts with cava and snacks as you get to know your fellow chefmates (there were 20 of us). With all the necessary equipment and ingredients provided, you’ll work alongside your partner in your own kitchen station, chopping and cooking the ingredients, with the chef on hand to guide you through every step of the process. It’s cooking where you don’t have to concentrate too hard… because you’re also drinking and chatting.
But it’s not just about the food – this class is fun. You’ll have the opportunity to interact with the chef and other guests who all share your same passion for food… and wine.
Once the cooking is done, everyone sits down together downstairs in the private dining room to share some of the tapas you’ve prepared, as well as a main course and dessert made by the chefs themselves.
And to top it all off, you’ll have access to endless wine pairings throughout the meal, making this a truly unforgettable experience. Book it, and bring your camera and your appetite.
Conclusion: 3 Amazing Food Tours in Madrid
These three great food tours in Madrid gave us a thorough introduction to traditional Spanish dishes and ingredients from some of the best and most popular stands and restaurants in town.
We enjoyed each experience immensely and learned so much about the food in Spain and specifically in Madrid. Afterwards, the guides provided their own restaurant recommendations so we could continue to enjoy local food with confidence.