November 18, 2018
Restaurants of the World: La Cocina de San Anton in Madrid.
Wonderfully located on the rooftop of a well known old popular market (El Mercado de San Anton), you can shop and then eat! The market itself is full of delicious fresh produce of local provenance, including fish, meat and vegetables. You can also find a delicious array of breads and pastries that tempt you to indulge.
If you have never visited Madrid (you are missing out), it is an enchanting and vibrant city that almost never sleeps – likewise La Cocina de San Anton, which is open from 10am until late into the night. Wandering around the streets of Chueca, which is akin to London’s Shoreditch area or Greenwich Village in New York, it is lively and bustling with people even in the late midnight hours. There is a vibrancy in this area that is equal to none. You really do get swept up into this atmosphere very quickly.
We stumbled across La Cocina de San Anton almost by accident. We had not heard of it before, but as foodies we love to get involved in great produce by visiting local markets. What a bonus to find this restaurant!
The vista from the roof is wonderful. The restaurant itself is divided into sections, depending on your taste and desire to eat or just enjoy chilling out in the Hawaiian themed bar, sipping a cocktail and enjoying the view. The restaurant is quite large and well decorated, but you need to remember it is so popular and very busy, so booking is vital. This restaurant is somewhat of a closely-guarded secret frequented by locals rather than tourists, but for sure, it won’t remain that way for much longer!
Inside or out, there is a charm to this place – you can have privacy at a corner table, or sit outside in the shade enjoying a cocktail and some delicious tapas or a full meal. There is something on this menu for everyone. Sample the so tender ‘jamon bellota’, a beautiful cured ham made from pigs that have been raised on acorns – authentic and full of flavour, accompanied by delicious bread. If you enjoy soup, particularly ‘gazpacho style’, this colourful cold tomato soup will not fail to delight with its’ deep flavour and specially created recipe by the restaurant. Other great choices are ‘padron peppers’ or ‘chanquetes’ (tiny fried fish, similar to whitebait).
It is impossible to mention all the delights of the menu at La Cocina de San Anton. You can tell how fresh the fish is – recommended is the Salmon Tataki or the wonderful mouthwatering octopus. If you really cannot make up your mind, try the fixed price daily menu, served from Monday to Friday, or order some choices from the a la carte offerings. You certainly won’t be disappointed. The wine list is excellent and the staff will recommend any pairings with food that you may enjoy.
But here’s something we have never experienced before. Stroll round the market, pick up some fish or meat that takes your fancy and head upstairs to La Cocina, where they will cook it for you for just E12.50! You can choose if you want it grilled or oven baked, and pick what vegetables you want including varieties of potatoes, chipped or as you like them!
This restaurant is certainly unique in its location and style of dining. Lunch or dinner or just a snack with a drink, you are certain to enjoy it and wish to return.
When you have finished dining, go back to the streets and soak up the atmosphere. The area is so cosmopolitan, alive and eclectic – you will find something different happening every day. Put San Anton and the surrounding area on your ‘must do’ list!
A: C/ de Augusto Figueroa, 24
3ª planta | Madrid
T: +34 91 330 02 94
W: La Cocina de San Anton
Written by Rafa Zurita for Luxuria Lifestyle International