Madrid: Mercado San Miguel

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Without a doubt our favorite place in Madrid was Mercado San Miguel, one of the oldest covered markets in Madrid. This renovated market was surprisingly modern, clean and filled with all sorts of wonderful foodstuff and tapas.

After our dinner at Restaurante Botin we walked along this street and was surprised to find the market just a few minutes away. We didn’t even plan to go there on our first night but the lure of more food was irresistible.
Plaza San Miguel

On the way to the market we passed by this popular tapas place called TragaTapas which had a promotion for San Miguel beer. Is this the same as our own San Miguel beer? The logo on the bottle looked the same.

We saw a lot of branches of Museo del Jamon around the city.
Museo del Jamon


The first stall I saw when I went in the market was this one selling different variations of bacalao (salted cod) tapas.
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Ham, ham, ham!!!
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We couldn’t decide what to try and buy so we ended up not getting any. We did try their free sample of Jamon Iberico Belota ham. Yum!!!
Mercado San Miguel

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Majority of the tapas were on bread and were cold. You could literally treat the market as one big tapas buffet and try as many or as little as you desire.
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I was impressed with this hi-tech digital weighing scale at the fruit stand. We won’t see anything like this in our markets that’s for sure.
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The cheese stand had their own all cheese tapas too.
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nuts and dried fruit

I wish I tried the chicharon ( fried pork rind) made from Jamon Iberico.
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This stall also sold potato chips fried in olive oil.
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Rochelle and I tried the Pastoret yogurt in the glass jar and it instantly became my favorite yogurt while I was in Spain. They had unique flavor combinations like coconut & pineapple, banana candy milk and green lemon which we bought.
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This was the section when I began to feel faint. My eyesight hazed and my heart went aflutter.
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I knew I wanted dessert after dinner but how the heck was I supposed to choose from all these goodies? Those chocolate covered palmiers were taunting me again.
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I did consider those super cookies but I deemed it too safe and boring.
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I ended up buying an almond florentine cookie. Good choice if I may say so.
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almond florentine

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Arabic sweets

If tapas aren’t enough then there were also fresh seafood available.
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fresh seafood

This monkfish was really huge.
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fresh artisinal pasta

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Since it was summer it was still really sunny at 9:28 pm.
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The next day we went back for lunch and this time we knew what we wanted to try.
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This was the only seating area in the market. It was not enough and we had to look for an alternative area to stand and eat.
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We went straight to the paella stall for a small tapa portion of paella which we shared. It was a bit firm and oily for my taste but it wasn’t too bad.
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Next we had a couple of bacalao on melba toasts and foie gras topped with cheese. I wish we could have eaten more but I was still full from our hearty breakfast buffet at our hotel.
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I also had a glass of what I thought was lemonade but it was heavily spiked. I think it was white sangria but this stall called it Limonada Madrid.
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Limonada Madrid 4€

While we were eating we met a young Filipino guy who was also traveling around Spain and this was what he ate. The white spaghetti like thing on the left was actually angulas (baby eel) which Rochelle had been wanting to try but was scared she wouldn’t be able to finish it. The guy was nice enough to let her try a little bit. He even offered us some ham. He told us that Mercado San Miguel was much nicer and cleaner than La Boqueria market in Barcelona.
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I thought I had enough food sightings for the day but my feet led me into this pretty pasteleria near the market.
pasteleria in Madrid

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I gave in and bought a couple of marzipan is a favorite of mine.
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Here’s something we Filipinos are very familiar with – lenguas de gato and barquillos. Looking at the food and pastries around Madrid made me realize how ingrained Spanish food is in our culture. I don’t speak much Spanish having failed my Spanish subjects in Ateneo (¡perdón! Señor Prado) yet I didn’t have a hard time understanding the names of the food and that’s the most important thing.
pasteleria in Madrid-002

Mercado San Miguel
Plaza de San Miguel, s/n, 28005, Madrid Spain
telephone: 915-424-936

9 thoughts on “Madrid: Mercado San Miguel

  1. I was so carried away with this article and can’t get over it that I have to read it over again for 3 consecutive days, hahahah! (and probably will do again) thanks for posting these exciting place & foods


  2. Hi, Leslie. I enjoy reading your entries on Madrid. Makes me miss it even more! We also liked Mercado de San Miguel. The paella, the hamon, the 2EUR sangria, the red wine, the chorizos, the caviar on salmon, the cheese!!, the pistachio florentines (i see that you liked your almond florentine 🙂 ), the olives, etc.. YUM! but more than the food, we really enjoyed the vibe of the place. We were there on a busy May evening, and everyone just seemed so happy. Definitely a must-visit! Keep your Europe posts coming 🙂


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