Cervantes, Quevedo, Jacinto Benavente…. You could think that today we are going to talk about literature but no, we will not talk about literature but gastronomy. The names mentioned previously apart from being some of the greatest Spanish writers of all times, are also the names of the principal streets in the district of Las Letras, in the centre of Madrid, one of the best areas for tapas (finger food) in the capital.
In fact, Madrid’s most mythical taverns are here and have the same name as the streets: Cervecería Cervantes,Taberna Quevedo…. Places where one can enjoy the authentic atmosphere of Madrid, savour a lively vermouth and with a beer taste traditional delicious tapas such as, omelette, squid, cheese in oil, chistorra sausage, classical homemade croquettes, Iberian cured ham, tripe, potatoes with mayonnaise and garlic, Russian salad, etc. Everything!
Near to the recently reopened Hotel Las Letras one of the great hotels in the centre of Madrid, can be found the principal streets offering the typical delights of the most well known dishes of Spanish cuisine. Taking as a reference the plaza Santa Ana, where on the terraces one can spend hours with a cold beer or vermouth, all you need to do is go to the Paseo de Prado, turning into the Calle Huertas and the surroundings.
Between the bars and taverns famous for their tapas in Madrid, the two which we have already mentioned stand out from the others: Cervecería Cervantes, situated in the street of the same name, near to the Metro station Bank of Spain. It opens every day of the week from 12 noon to midnight except on Sunday evenings when the staff are free. Here it is essential to try their sea food, prawns, octopus, or even oysters. Also the dishes and traditional tapas are more than recommendable.
The Quecedo Tavern is smaller although there is also a dining room at the back but it is well worth squeezing in, find a corner of the bar, put your elbows on the bar and ask for two beers directly.
Newer and more modern is El Barril also in Cervantes street. A place for fans of sea food tapas. The products are good although more expensive than the previous two and not so authentic, but there is a good atmosphere and first class produce.
In the neighbourhood we can also find one of the classic taverns for cocido madrileño (boiled meat and vegetables). If La Bola is the point of reference for this dish in the area near to Santo Domingo and the Opera, here in the Las Letras district the La Daniela Tavern is the place to visit. Apart from the stew you can also try their tapas, an essential is their omelette, which they cook freshly for you.
To enjoy to the maximum this area, it is recommended that you book a room in the Gran Via or directly at an hotel in the Las Letras district, where there is an excellent selection and the quality of the establishments is good with a mix of 3, 4 and 5 stars. Also apart from being able to prolong the tapas route without limit and return comfortably to sleep, you can plan visits to the principal museums in Madrid, go to the theatre or see a show, or a night out in one of the most animated in the capital