It’s not just a market anymore when you’re standing there, fingers smeared with Spanish cheese and tears forming in your eyes, declaring, “This is the best day of my life.” For me, in the middle of Madrid’s vibrant Mercado de San Miguel, it certainly felt that way. Perhaps I was experiencing a sort of foodie Stendhal Syndrome, stricken and dizzied by the colors, tastes and smells of one of the world’s most interactive and indulgent food markets.
Located just behind Madrid’s famous Plaza Mayor, Mercado de San Miguel isn’t an ordinary supermarket; it’s a high-concept culinary wonderland. Part tapas bar, part tasting hall with healthy doses of wine bar, grocery store and gastronomic maze thrown in, there’s more to do here than daily errands. Read more
A Photo Journey through one of Madrid’s Most Imaginative Michelin-Starred Meals
El Club Allard is rising through the international culinary ranks after receiving a two-star Michelin rating in 2011. This restaurant is helmed by illusionary genius Diego Guerrero, one of the most innovative chefs in contemporary cuisine. Eliminating the concept of menu choices, diners are only given three options: an abbreviated tasting menu, a classics tasting menu showcasing the best of El Club Allard and a “Farm to Table” menu (pictured below) mixing up Guerrero’s signature dishes with his latest gastronomic experiments. Each of the restaurant’s menus is a multi-sensory journey into taste imagination where nothing is as it seems. Read more
SAN SEBASTIAN, a small seaside city in northern Spain’s Basque Country, is currently the world’s most exciting culinary destination, with more Michelin stars per capita (currently 16) than anywhere else. San Sebastian is also famous for its outstanding pintxos – pronounced “pinchos” – Basque-style tapas. These small, savory canapés are presented in a myriad of colors, forms and flavor combinations, laid out on giant platters and spread along every counter in town. Twice a day, hundreds of people pour into the streets for a traditional “pintxos crawl,” moving from bar to bar: tasting, drinking and socializing. In San Sebastian, pintxos are more than delicious snacks, they are ingrained in the city’s culinary history, they are a way of life. Read more