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Spain has some of the oldest restaurants in the world | © Casa Mingo
Spain has some of the oldest restaurants in the world | © Casa Mingo
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A Photographic Tour of Madrid's Oldest Restaurants

Picture of Lori Zaino
Updated: 17 February 2017
Madrid is famous for having some of the oldest restaurants in the world. You can chow down on delicious, authentic Spanish cuisine and take a trip through history at the same time when visiting some of the city’s restaurants, some of which date back to the 18th and 19th centuries. If you can’t make it to Madrid in person to eat at some of these famous spots, you can at least admire them in the photos below.
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Botín

Botin, back in the day | © Botin

Botín, back in the day | © Botín

Madrid is home to Restaurant Botín, which dates back to 1725 and is the oldest restaurant in the world according to Guinness World Records.

Botin today | © Botin

Botín today | © Botín

The restaurant, which still uses a wood-fired oven also dating back to 1725, specializes in roast suckling pig and lamb. These delicacies are still prepared in the famous oven today, just as they were centuries ago.

The oven is still cooking today| © Botin

The wood-fired oven still works today | © Botín

Literature buffs can take pleasure in reading about Botín as the restaurant appears in texts like Fortunata and Jacinta by Galdós and Hemingway’s The Sun Also Rises and Death in the Afternoon, as well as works by Frederick Forsyth, Arturo Barea, Carlos Arniches, Graham Greene and even F. Scott Fitzgerald. Today, you an enjoy a typical Spanish lunch or dinner in Botín in one of the upstairs rooms or even in the downstairs wine cave.

Dine in the wine cellar| © Botin

Dine in the wine cellar | © Botin


Casa Pedro

Casa Pedro back in the day |© Casa Pedro

Casa Pedro back in the day | © Casa Pedro

Casa Pedro’s roots actually date back to 1072, when founder Pedro Guiñales created a restaurant and inn called Casa de la Pascuala. Cattle breeders on the road from France to Spain often stopped here for a rest and a meal. In 1825, one of Guiñales’ descendants changed the establishment’s name to Casa de Silvestra and began to sell grapes and wine produced in the family vineyards.

Castillian delights at Casa Pedro |© Casa Pedro

Castilian delights at Casa Pedro | © Casa Pedro

In 1940, the restaurant changed its name to Casa Pedro, specializing in traditional Castilian cuisine.

The restaurant today |© Casa Pedro

The restaurant today | © Casa Pedro

The restaurant has also refurbished their wine cellar, Bodega Pedro, where you can sample plenty of Spanish vinos.

The Bodega Pedro |© Casa Pedro

The Bodega Pedro | © Casa Pedro

Casa Pedro, Calle Nuestra Sra. de Valverde, 119 (Pueblo de Fuencarral) Madrid, +34 917 340 201


Lhardy

Lhardy's classic decor | © Lhardy

Lhardy’s classic decor | © Lhardy

Lhardy maintains its aristocratic charm today, once known as an establishment that entertained royalty and Madrid’s elite back in 1825. In 1880, the restaurant had a makeover by famous decorator Rafael Guererro, who was known for creating chic and glamorous spaces around Madrid.

Lhardy's elegant rooms | © Lhardy

Lhardy’s classically decorated rooms | © Lhardy

The “secret” room, known as the Salon Japonés, was the meeting spot for many Spanish revolutionaries, and it’s said that many conspiracies and plots were born there. This secret spot wasn’t just for men, though—it’s also rumored that Queen Isabel II met her lovers at this spot too. Today, the restaurant is known for its delicious Spanish cuisine and elegant atmosphere.

Delicious food at Lhardy | © Lhardy

Delicious food at Lhardy | © Lhardy

Lhardy, Carrera de San Jerónimo, 8, 28014 Madrid, Spain,+34 915 21 33 85


Casa Mingo

Sidra and chicken | © Casa Mingo

Sidra and chicken | © Casa Mingo

Casa Mingo is one of the oldest and most famous sidrerías in Spain. Dating back to 1888, the spot serves sidra, an apple cider-like drink originating from the Asturias region in Spain.

Sausage and sidra | © Casa Mingo

Sausage and sidra | © Casa Mingo

The restaurant has a fun and bustling atmosphere and its menu is simple but delicious, featuring roasted chicken, cheeses, sausage and a few other key Spanish dishes.

Bottles and barrels | © Casa Mingo

Bottles and barrels | © Casa Mingo

The building’s decor has remained almost entirely the same over the years with plenty of bottles and wooden barrels in sight.

The original facade | © Casa Mingo

The original facade | © Casa Mingo

The facade today, not too different from 1888 | © Casa Mingo

The facade today, not too different from in 1888 | © Casa Mingo

The grounds of the venue have often been used as filming locations in commercials and movies, putting it firmly on the map as one of the most well-known restaurants in Madrid.


Restaurante Viva Madrid

The tiled facade | © Restaurante Viva

The tiled facade | © Restaurante Viva Madrid

Dating back to 1856, Restaurante Viva’s colorful, antique ceramic facade is representative of Madrid’s rich cultural history.

The main bar | © Restaurante Viva Madrid

The main bar | © Restaurante Viva Madrid

The main bar is also reminiscent of older days, with a gaudy chandelier, wood bar and intricate beams supporting the ceiling.

Seafood rice | © Restaurante Viva Madrid

Seafood rice | © Restaurante Viva Madrid

The restaurant offers typical Madrileñan cuisine as well as other Spanish dishes such as paella, stews and oxtail.

Traditional cuisine | © Restaurante Viva Madrid

Traditional cuisine | © Restaurante Viva Madrid

Restaurante Viva Madrid, Calle Manuel Fernández y González, 7, 28014 Madrid, Spain, +34 914 20 35 96


Casa Del Abuelo

Casa del Abuelo back in the day | © Casa del Abuelo

Casa del Abuelo back in the day | © Casa del Abuelo

Not necessarily the oldest restaurant in Madrid but producing some of the city’s most delicious fare, Casa del Abuelo stills hits well above the hundred-year mark, having been open since 1906.

The facade | © Casa del Abuelo

The facade | © Casa del Abuelo

The tavern started out selling donuts and sweet wine, and later expanded to include sandwiches and in the 1940s, prawns. To this day, a glass of wine with some gambas remains the most popular order.

The famous prawns | © Casa del Abuelo

The famous prawns | © Casa del Abuelo

Nicknamed “El Abuelo” (“The Grandfather”) by the locals, this restaurant is considered a local favorite by many in Madrid. If you go, make sure to sample the famous prawns—although these days the menu has expanded to include cured meats, cheeses, seafood and more.

A beer and a high top table | © Casa del Abuelo

A beer and a high top table | © Casa del Abuelo

Casa Del Abuelo, Calle de la Victoria, 12, 28012 Madrid, Spain, +34 910 00 01 33