Anytime I am heading to a new city I always do a quick search for a food market. Why? It is typically the quickest, cheapest, most organic way to try the best of the local nibbles popular with locals. And, hey are always filled with locals to interact with.
Upon, arriving to Madrid I did my typical market search and found the fabulous looking and food-filled Mercado San Miguel. Built in 1916, this iron and glass structure is a not a place where locals buy product and meat but a gourmet tapas market with close to 30 vendors who are selling all types of Spanish favorites – many for as low as 1 euro.
I spent an hour surveying and tasting the nibbles and spent less than 20 euro and left with a full belly, satiated taste buds and an understanding of the local delicacies such as olive and anchovey skewers.
Read on to see which tapas you should definitely give a try when visiting the Market!
Oxtail or locally known as Rambo de toro is a traditionalSpanish stew which takes beef from Córdoba and slowly roasts it. The vendor Uvepan was serving up a spin on the classic by stuffing raviolis with them. For 3 euroI had three yummy raviolis coated with melted cheese and a hearty stuffing of the roasted delicacy.
The seafood canapés at La Casa Del Bacolod were so difficult to choose from. Each of the two bite morsels looked who tempting so I choose a variety. My selection included the traditional dehydrated, salted cod called bacalao that was then rehydrated and mixed with a cream, a salted anchovey with sautéed peppers toast, salmon and, personal favorite, the pulpo (octopus) canapé. In total, these four nibbles cost 5 euro and were delectable.
Vermouth & Olive Skewers
Of all the tapas vendors in the market La Hora del Vermont was my favorite! The gourmet olive and vermouth vendor had a great selection of olives and pickled onions mixed with a seafood varieties and cheese. Plus, the selection of vermouth on tap ranged from 1 to 6 euro for a glass. My skewers included a variety ranging from jamon with cheese and olives to and anchovies. The serving of vermouth was a perfect level of sweet to pair with the salty, pickled flavors of the skewers. I spent 10 euro here and definitely would try even more if able to return to the market.
Visit the Market
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Cynthia is a recovering Travel Director turned TV host, creator of Her Drive Podcast, and lover of all things adventure, unicorns, van life, and wellness-focused. She can be found dining wherever octopus is on the menu.