Friday, September 21, 2012

Travelogue: The Madrileña Part II - Of Churros and Toros

In the vain hope of actually documenting my trip, you'll see some entries interlaced in between ones of actual life back in the States.  I apologize for the chronological confusion that is about to occur, but hopefully pretty pictures will allow you to forgive me.

Plaza de Toros de Las Ventas in Madrid

Lesson one about Madrid is that it may not be for the faint of heart.  It's rich, yes.  Both in culture and in cuisine, which we apparently learned the hard way when wandering through the Museo de Jamón (Museum of Ham) or watching an actual bull fight at Las Ventas.  For the sake of not disturbing you too much, I'll probably forgo from the discussion of the bullfight.  It was gory.  Fortunately, I was so exhausted from jet lag that I actually fell asleep in the middle of the bullfight.  The plus sides?  The bull fighting ring was beautiful, and the toreadors have some cute tooshes.

Left:  Anita and I in front of the Chocolateria de San Gines; Right:  Devouring the churros.

Lesson two?  The extent of how gory the bull fight was was made up for in the deliciousness of Madrid's markets and local staples.  One of the must-go-to places on my list was the Chocolateria San Gines.  The store specializes in churros con chocolate.  Now, these aren't your run of the mill churros from Taco Bell or Costco, which I'll be honest were the only churros I had eaten at that point.  These are hot, funnel cake-like, melt in your mouth sticks of deliciousness, dipped in a soup-like chocolate.  The chocolate was not too sweet, but had a delicious dark bitterness to it.  Needless to say, they were eaten very quickly.

I've got more pictures of food where that came from.  You should click the next page to see it!  It'll make you hungry, I'm just going to warn you.  Click next to read more!

Inside the Mercado de San Miguel
I think the last greatest place we visited in Madrid (other than the palace) was the Mercado de San Miguel.  Unlike some of the other markets I've been to in Europe, this one is brand new.  From its innovative wine bar and restaurant seating areas in the middle of the market itself to its array of food carts, the Mercado de San Miguel is a foodie's paradise.  This place had everything:  a butcher, a bakery, numerous tapas bars, a bookstore, a store that sold only jellies and candies.  This is what I imagine a part of heaven to be like.

Until then, I'll spare you the gory details or any more pictures of food.  I'm hungry, and unfortunately, I have no food in my apartment.  In any case, what do you think?  Think you can last a bull fight?  Holler at your girl down below.

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