Madrid Restaurants: Casa de Granada

Restaurant Casa de Granada

Granada is celebrated for its rolling hills, with spectacular views of the city and the tremendous Alhambra; the most generous and appetizing tapas in Spain; and people that exhibit an open and friendly spirit. Yet these charming Andalucían qualities have been adopted by one restaurant and bar here in Madrid; Casa de Granada. At this discrete rooftop restaurant, you will enjoy warm hospitality, an assortment of savory tapas, and a sunny terrace with views of red-tiled rooftops and the colorful Plaza of Tirso de Molina.

Normally frequented by locals, Casa Granada is situated on the top floor of an apartment building in Tirso de Molina. It is easy for passersby to miss, unless they cast their eyes upwards and catch a glimpse of Madrileños enjoying cold drinks on the rooftop terrace. It is well worth it to get on the wait list for the pleasant patio, where you will enjoy the warm summer sunshine, views of Tirso de Molina´s old-fashioned rose- and mustard-colored buildings, and groups of vendors selling flowers in the plaza below. At night, the lights of Madrid twinkle into the distance. The terrace fills up quickly, but the inside of the restaurant is also pleasantly Spanish and comfortable. The simple décor of the cozy interior includes light wooden tables, clay tiled floor, broad windows overlooking the terrace, and a bar hosting peanuts and other snacks. Madrileños always create a lively Spanish ambience—the space quickly fills with cheerful chatting and raucous laughter.

Beyond its sweeping views, Casa de Granada has adopted another tradition from Andalusia´s white city; incredible tapas. The menu is extensive, and while portions are generous, prices stay low. If you would like to try a variety of different Spanish tapas, then this lively restaurant is ideal with a large group of friends. Together, you can sample homemade ham croquettes, patatas bravas or alioli, fish stuffed peppers, Iberic sausage and cheese, and Spanish tortillas. Another specialty is the chopitos platter (8.20 euros). This enormous plate—perfect for trying a mixture of Spanish flavors and feeding a hungry crowd—features four types of meat, calamari, potatoes, and six diverse sauces. For a complete meal, the menu of the day is 9 euros, and includes two traditional Spanish plates, bread, wine, and dessert (served Monday-Friday; weekend menu 12 euros). To round it all out, enjoy an ice cold beer, a jug of sangria, cider, or an Andalucían tinto de verano. The staff at Casa de Granada is extremely friendly and accommodating, carrying on the tradition of Andalucían openness. So if you can´t take that trip to Granada, a bit of the white city can come to you in a uniquely Madrid manner.

PRICES:

Beer, wine, sangria, cider- 2.40-20 euros (glasses, jugs/bottles)
Soda and juice- 1.90-2 euros
Salads- 6.50-8.50 euros
Vegetables- 7-8.50 euros
Tapas- 3.50-13 euros
Iberic ham, sausage, and cheese- 6.50-18 euros
Meat and fish- 8-16.50 euros
Homemade desserts- 2.50-12 euros

Menu del dia (Monday-Friday)- 9 euros
Menu del dia (Saturday-Sunday)-12 euros
Specially Catered Menu- 25-50 euros per person

Casa de Granada

Calle del Doctor Cortezo 17, 6th floor  Malasana
Neighborhood: Tirso de Molina
Metro: Tirso de Molina
Telephone: 914 200 825
Types: Rooftop bar, restaurant, tapas
Hours: 12 p.m. to 1 a.m. Sunday-Thursday
12 p.m. to 2 a.m. Friday-Saturday

By Jane Caffrey
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BARS IN MADRID: La Descubierta

La Descubierta

Calle Barcelona, 12
Neighborhood: Sol
Metro: Sol, SevillaTelephone: 915329757
Hours: 12 p.m. to 2 a.m. daily

Outstanding wine is a delightful aspect of life in Spain. La Descubierta, the chic new wine bar that opened its doors on May 14 of this year, has capitalized on this pleasant quality of life and offers a massive selection of wine from around the country. Spanish wine lovers should not miss the opportunity to spend an evening tasting rich and diverse flavors from Rioja, Ribera del Duero, Somontano, and La Mancha.

Amidst the colossal collection of high quality wine, La Descubierta offers everything from reds to whites, rosés to sweet wines, fine wines and a house special, Calzadilla Crianza (20 euros per bottle). The menu also includes a flavorful Castillo San Diego white from Cadiz; a pungent Conde de Valdemar Rioja; and the sweet Moscatel Goya. The wine tasting experience is further enhanced by a tasty tapas menu. Each glass or bottle is accompanied with a tapa, like tostadas, cured cheese, or freshly cut Iberic ham, but for additional finger food, the full menu offers toast, salads, and Spanish rations. Specialties include potatoes served with two sauces (4 euros), calamari a la Romana (7 euros), and a platter of traditionally grilled meat (14 euros). Don´t see what you want on the menu? Just ask for it! Here, the chefs will personally prepare individual requests. The staff is extremely friendly and knowledgeable, so do not hesitate to ask questions about the menu or wine.

A great location and sharp interior design have also bolstered success for this up and coming bar. Located on Calle Barcelona—a street bustling with the outdoor terraces of a variety of restaurants—diners can enjoy the Spanish summer scene at one of the outdoor tables on the cobblestone street. Inside, the bar is modern and stylish, yet also classically Spanish. Cozy, light brick contrasts with the sunshine yellow, violet, and sea foam turquoise walls. Gold candle chandeliers, old-fashioned clocks, and ornate mirrors dress up the space. Yet legs of ham also hang on the walls and around the bar, in an innately Spanish fashion. The chic wood and white marble bar is set to the backdrop of the striking collection of wine.

La Descubierta has been increasingly drawing crowds since it opened its doors this spring. Attention to detail and excellence, found in the waiters, the ambience, and the wide array of sweet and savory wines, ensures that this bright bar in the center of Madrid will increasingly make a name for itself into the future.

PRICES:

Wine- 1.50 (glass)-28 (bottle) euros
Sangria- 10 euros per pitcher
Mixed drinks, mojitos, caipirinhas- 5.50 euros
Shots- 2 euros
Coffee and tea- 1.30 euros
Tostas- 2.50-5 euros
Salads- 4-6 euros
Ibericos- 4.50-12.50 euros
Rations- 6-14 euros

By Jane Caffrey

To return to the main page click here.

BARS IN MADRID: Gaudeamus Cafe

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Gaudeamus Cafe

Calle Tribulete, 14, Edificio Escuelas Pias (UNED)
Neighborhood: Lavapiés
Metro: Lavapiés
Telephone: 91 528 25 94
Hours: 6 p.m. to 12 a.m. Monday-Saturday
Kitchen open 8:00 to 11 p.m. Monday-Saturday

At sunset, the terrace of Gaudeamus Café overlooks a brilliant display of scarlet and tangerine hues dancing across tiled rooftops. In the heart of Lavapiés, Madrid’s most multicultural neighborhood, this outdoor rooftop café and restaurant crowns the prominent Edificio Escuelas Pias (UNED), known as one of the greatest architectural jewels in the capital for its cylindrical, stone library. Come here to surround yourself with cinema festivals and art exhibitions, and to enjoy a cold drink while taking in the spectacular view of Madrid’s most colorful quarter.
The ambience at Gaudeamus Café is what truly defines this hidden rooftop gem as one-of-a-kind. Beyond the UNED building—with its stoic, old-fashioned library, actor’s studios and artistic displays, and enormous, roman numeral clock—the bar itself is chic and urban. A color scheme of crimson, orange, and dark-chestnut greets you upon entering, and trendy artwork, like the modern painting of a British phone booth, adorns the walls. The brick bar is complemented by luminous, orange and ruby teardrop lamps hanging overhead, and for lounging there are plush leather couches or the sleek, black tables embellished with tea light candles. A continuous row of windows forms an entire wall, providing an impressive view of the neighborhood rooftops. But in warmer months, the cool, outdoor terrace will be too tempting to pass up.  While dining or drinking, you can admire the stunning library of the UNED building and take in unparalleled views of tiled rooftops and white Spanish architecture in Lavapiés.
On hot summer nights, a chilled drink or a light meal on the terrace is the perfect way to enjoy the outdoors and relax. Wine and ice cold beer are available for 2-3 euros, and the bar also features interesting cocktails. For fresh dining options, try the homemade Argentinean empanadas, a tosta topped with Italian tomatoes and flavorful cheese, a rich hummus, or the mouthwatering white chocolate mousse topped with dried fruit.
The crowd at this sophisticated bar generally consists of an interesting mix that is involved in the arts and cultural scene. So if you plan to find an interesting book and a quiet corner in the library, are passing by to catch a unique movie at one of the film festivals, or are simply strolling through neighborhood—do not miss this stylish bar at the heart of Madrid’s cultural scene and in one of the city’s most pulsating neighborhoods.

PRICES:
Wine and beer- 2-3 euros ?
Gaudeamus Specialties- 3-17 euros
Salads- 9-15 euros
Tostas- 5.50-8 euros
Desserts- 5-6 euros

By Jane Caffrey

To return to the main page click here.

Veranos Concert Series

The summer concert series from VERANOS continues this week with an incredible lineup of rock and roll superstars swinging through Madrid. On Monday, July 13th, John Fogerty will be playing all of your favorite CCR tracks as well as songs from his solo career. On Tuesday, Lou Reed brings his tour with Laurie Anderson to the stage for what sounds like an interesting show that encompasses even more than just their music. And on Thursday, one of the founding fathers of Rock and Roll, Jerry Lee Lewis, will grace Madrid with his presence. For all of the ticket info click here.

Annie Leibovitz Exhibition in Madrid

Just Opened! This is a can’t miss exposition that has just arrived to Madrid as part of the international visual arts festival, PHOTOESPAÑA. One of the most recognizable names in photography, Annie Leibovitz, brings her exposition ‘Annie Leibovitz: A Photographers Life, 1990-2005’ to Madrid. After stops in places like New York, London and Berlin this is a great opportunity to see some of her best work including photos of Bill Clinton, Nelson Mandela, and the unmistakable photo of Demi Moore posing while pregnant. For more information on the location and hours of the exposition and the rest of the PHOTOESPAÑA lineup click here.