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Wilfrid1

Madrid

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I’ve been to Mercado San Miguel before and loved it. Is it much different then in 2011? I am having a light lunch there.

 

I have zero interest in Mexican food or a 3 hour lunch that day.

 

Thanks for the dinner tips!

 

It'd be really jaded to say it's bad. It's just much more tourist facing / strictly a food hall now than it was in the beginning, but you can still have a great light (or not light at all) lunch. 

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Actually, for what I want, a cono of iberico bellota, another snack and something vegetarian for my wife and dine/done in 40 minutes, seems perfect. Most of the day will be at the museum

But given the collective advice on the board, if I can get some pata negra for snacking, I may skip lunch .

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 What went south?    Seating?   Table?    Timing?    Indifferent service? 

 

Interesting because their online menu is in English so they are supposedly used to or at least encouraging visitor patronage.

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What's a good area to stay in for a first time visitor to Madrid?

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Probably Barrio de las Letras - close to the museums, retiro, atocha, touristy but not overly obnoxious. 

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I’d say anywhere within walking distance of Plaza del Sol. It’s a very compact city, all the first-time sights like the Prado are easy from there.

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Yup. Actually I would say you want to ideally be a 10 minutes walk from Sol if you're there on the weekend as the B&T crowd pours in there. 

 

Chueca is nice too but more of a walk to most attractions. (completely gentrified nowadays, vs Malasaña which I love but where we still get plenty of dirty looks if we leave dressed up for dinner in Salamanca)

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If UES/UWS is your thing and you don't mind the commute to the museums I kind of liked staying in Salamanca last year.  I mean its barely a commute. But its very nice and quiet and mostly closer to where you'll want to eat.

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Does anyone have any fairly recent restaurant recommendations? I would like one splurge.

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I think, for you, Lippy, the right splurge is probably going to be Santceloni or Horcher or Alabaster … with Alabaster being more modern and less splurge-y but still included because I’m not sure what splurge-y means to you and it’s a very good resto (and I'll add that I don’t take any issue with Bonner’s prior comments on the place yet I still think that it merits some consideration)

 

When I say “for you”, Lippy, although I don’t see you write enough on your resto experiences / preferences (hence I don’t have your tastes totally calibrated), I am thinking that you are someone who strongly appreciates tradition, who likes a good, involved recipe (and sauce), who appreciates but doesn't fetishize good/great/exceptional product, who knows when such recipes are being executed properly and who may also put additional emphasis on civilized ambiance when splurging and of course would want to easily discourse between courses.

 

Hence I’m skipping all the modernist stuff because I don’t think that’s your cup of tea, so bye bye DiverXo, DSTAgE, etc

 

Hence I’m skipping the pure product marisquerías, where you can order yourself an expensive fishy feast if so desired and experience mariscos that you simply cannot find in your NYC geo because my instincts tell me that this is not your idea of a splurge and, maybe more importantly, that you desire a higher level of service and ambiance. So adios O'Pazo, La Trainera, Restaurante Sanxenxo* and Restaurante Combarro*, and (winking at you, Orik) El Señor Martín

 

That’s it, my dear, that’s pretty much** the whole jamon*** that you need to be reflecting on … but stick to my top 3

 

 

*Name of a Galician resort town and a nearby touristy village, respectively, fyi

 

** You could throw A Barra in there for a surely civilized, slightly scene-y, mini-splurge a la Alabaster, I guess, if your feeling a bit bourgeoisie … but this isn’t you, Lippy … Ramon Freixa ? No, I can’t send you there ...

 

*** Could have pulled a better Mexican mot out of my back pocket, but as Behemoth well knows that’s a bad idea to do in Old Europe and while conveniently on that subject I conclude by saying that although once very good, Punto MX has seen much better days ... far from horrible, but it's seen better days

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Maybe not Alabaster right now, but agreed on the rest. DiverXo is going to change a lot, soon.

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Whew! Chambolle, I think you've got my tastes just about right, although your suggestions may be mre of a splurge than I intend!

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