Casa Ricardo: Traditional Spanish Tapas in Madrid

by mary on December 19, 2012

Casa Ricardo, in the Moncloa district of Madrid, is one of those old fashioned places, tiled walls, bull-fighting memorabilia, local clientele, that really represents the spirit of Madrid. All the new, fashionable places with their upscale tapas, their fusion cuisine, and their multi-page wine list are re-inventing Madrid’s culinary scene….but sometimes you have to get back to basics. Luckily for every one of those new-tangled palaces, these are still ten Casa Ricardos…these places are what still gives Madrid that truly Spanish feel. All the traditional comfort foods are there, fried in vast quantities of good olive oil, and your drink options are only beer, red or white.

They were out of menestra the day we were there, but always get the menestra…one of Spain’s best dishes, a medley of the freshest sautéed and fried vegetables. So we settled on the ventresca and pimiento salad….simple as are most Spanish salads to let the ingredients shine. You don’t really get preserved tuna until you’ve had ventresca…you can just eat it straight out of the can!

The wine was the white, Rueda, and perfectly delicious with all of our dishes.

Missing those vegetables, we ordered the habas con jamon, lovely baby fava beans with chunks of ham for flavor. To satisfy my fried cravings, we ordered the huevos con patatas. There are a million variations of this ultimate Spanish comfort food….always with some type of fried pork. Here it was lovely blood sausage, or morcilla but due my friend’s allergie, we swapped chistorra, a sausage similar to chorizo. Delicious! Perfect fluffy egg, with crispy edges, slightly greasy, salty potatoes, rich pork….so satisfying!

All the dishes are shared as is usual in the best Spanish tradition. These are the types of simple foods Spaniards eat at home….it’s easy to feel at home in a place like Casa Ricardo. You get a real sense of history eating in a pace founded in 1935 and the people are very welcoming. It’s a little out of the touristic center but in a real Madrid neighborhood and worth the small detour. Web. Closest metro: Quevedo.

 

 

 

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