Best known simply as “Botín”, the Restaurante Sobrino de Botín (which means nephew of Botín), was established in 1725 and is the world’s oldest restaurant. In its nearly 300 year history it has hosted countless European royalty, is mentioned in Hemingway’s book “The Sun Also Rises” and was his favorite restaurant, and it’s said that the renowned painter Goya worked there while he waited to be accepted to the Royal Academy of Fine Arts.
With such a long and distinguished history, it’s no wonder that many tourists eat at Botín when they visit Madrid. This makes some wonder if it is “too touristy” and should be avoided. While it’s true that many tourists eat at Botín because of its history and it appears in every Madrid guide book under the sun, you will always find locals dining there as well. The locals eat at Botín because it is known for the high-quality traditional Castilian specialties that it continues to prepare in the same cast-iron ovens that were installed nearly 300 years ago when the restaurant began as an inn.
Botín is best known for its roasted meats, such as the cochinillo asado (roast suckling pig) and the cordero asado (roasted lamb), but the roast suckling pig is really the star of the show. It is roasted to perfection in the centuries old ovens and comes out with a golden skin that is so crispy it crackles when you cut through it. The meat below the perfectly crispy skin is tender and moist, and it practically melts in your mouth.
The menu at Botín includes many classic dishes, including sopa de ajo con huevo (garlic soup with egg), revueltos de la casa con morcilla y patatas (scrambled eggs with blood sausage and potatoes), and chipirones en su tinta (baby squids in their own ink), to name a few.
Eating at Botín is one of those things that everyone who visits Madrid should try at least once, and then you can be the judge of whether the experience lived up to your expectations.
- Calle Cuchilleros, 17
- Madrid, Spain
- Phone: (91) 366 42 17
- Website: Botín
Photo credit: © Christopher Pappas • All rights reserved.
Video credit: Restaurante Botín
As usual, thanks for reading. Please visit International Lodging Corporation at our home page.