The beautiful and historic La Latina neighborhood in central Madrid is dotted with tapas bars and leafy squares, with picturesque winding streets bringing it all together.
Locals love this part of town, making it one of the most authentic neighborhoods in the center of the city. This means that there are plenty of delicious choices when it comes to local bars and restaurants. As a result, La Latina is one of Madrid’s most iconic foodie neighborhoods.
La Latina is home to some of Madrid’s most essential food experiences. Calle Cava Baja is the can’t-miss street for a tapas crawl in the Spanish capital. And there’s nothing like a Sunday morning of exploring the Rastro flea market followed by an afternoon of bar hopping.
But where to start? To help you choose, here are some of our favorite places to try when you are deciding where to eat in La Latina.
1. La Taberna Errante
For creative Spanish dishes prepared with love and care, La Taberna Errante is a must for those wondering where to eat in La Latina. They specialize in seasonal dishes prepared with the freshest local produce.
Their ensaladilla rusa (creamy potato salad topped with tuna and hard-boiled egg) is a local favorite and a classic Spanish dish. For pre-dinner drinks, stand at the bar for a cold beer or glass of wine.
2. Taberna La Concha
For great Spanish tapas with a modern twist, Taberna La Concha is not to be missed. You can let the food do the talking, or you can accompany your meal with one of their expertly selected white or red wines for a truly special experience. If you’re looking for something sweeter, order one of their famous vermouth cocktails!
We love the salmorejo (like gazpacho but thicker and richer) and the homey-yet-elegant lentils with duck confit and foie gras. One bite of the food here, and you’ll know why it made this list of where to eat in La Latina.
Insider’s tip: Madrileños love tostas—hearty toasts topped with everything from grilled shrimp to blue cheese and steak. Taberna La Concha has a wide selection of tostas and they are a great way to try small portions of big flavors.
3. Taberna del Capitán Alatriste
Inside a 16th-century palace, with some dining rooms set in the original cellars, this sit-down restaurant features history, hearty food and great wines, making it a perfect choice when choosing where to eat in La Latina.
Try the roast suckling pig, the bull’s tail stew, or the migas—a traditional dish made of breadcrumbs sauteed with fried pork belly, garlic, eggs and grapes. Also, be sure to sample one of the Rioja Reserva wines, served by the bottle or by the glass!
Insider’s tip: In warmer months you can also enjoy your meal outside on their terrace!
4. Taberna Los Huevos de Lucio
“Fast food from the 17th century” is what you’ll find at Los Huevos de Lucio. The star dish, as the name of the restaurant gives away, are its huevos rotos—olive-oil-fried eggs rest atop a bed of perfectly crisp potatoes.
You can get them with pisto (ratatouille-like veggies) for the vegetarians, or we also love them with chistorra, a bright-red sausage from northern Spain.
This place fills up on nights and weekends, but don’t be afraid to carve out space for yourself wherever you can. Important: you’ll need real estate where you can set your plate down (or a friend to hold it for you), so you can sop up left-behind egg with a crusty piece of baguette!
Insider’s tip: Taberna Los Huevos de Lucio is located on the popular Cava Baja street. On weekends this area is abuzz with people young and old out to enjoy tapas and a drink. Go on the early side if you want to snag a table!
5. Juana La Loca
Named for the mad queen who ruled over Spain in the 16th century, locals and travelers alike go mad for the tapas at this cozy spot. Ask any savvy madrileño where to find Madrid’s best tortilla española (Spanish omelet), and nine times out of 10 the answer will be Juana La Loca. This spot should always be on your list for where to eat in La Latina!
The staff is friendly and knowledgeable, so be sure to ask for a recommendation from their excellent wine list. Whether you’re coming in for dinner or stopping by for a quick bite, every item on the menu is guaranteed to delight your palette.
Insider’s tip: This place is always packed, so call ahead to make a reservation or ask for the current status of how busy they are.
6. La Posada de la Villa
For a traditional Spanish lunch in a roasting house that’s been there since the 17th century, head to La Posada de la Villa. Try the roast lamb, prepared in a wood-fired oven, and pair it with a bold red wine from Ribera del Duero. They also make a mean cocido madrileño, perfect for lunch during Madrid’s winter months.
Insider’s Tip: If you want to try the cocido, you have to pre-order it while making your reservation!
7. Casa Gerardo
Also known as el almacén de los vinos (“the wine warehouse”), Casa Gerardo is an amazing, super-traditional tavern in La Latina. If you’re looking for an incredible selection of wines by the bottle and glass, and an out-of-this-world offering of cheeses, you can’t go wrong in this picturesque bar that looks like it’s straight out of another century.
8. La Paloma
La Paloma is a local favorite in the heart of the area where the Rastro flea market sets up shop every Sunday. After a day at the market, nothing beats coming here for the best no-frills seafood in town!
First opened in the 1960s, this spot is now run by the second generation of the same family. The current owner is Alfredo, whose father opened the bar. This is the place to go for seafood in the Rastro area—their grilled shrimp and vinegar cured anchovies are a thing of legend!
9. Mercado de la Cebada
Still can’t decide where to eat in La Latina? Head to the neighborhood market, Mercado de la Cebada, to help narrow it down a bit more.
A neighborhood fixture since 1875, the market is home to 80 stalls proudly run by local merchants. Whether you decide to stop for a bite at one of the market bars or restaurants, or simply pick up some picnic supplies here and then head to your favorite Madrid park, it’s a can’t-miss stop for foodies!
10. Los Caracoles
Rounding out our list of where to eat in La Latina is another Rastro-area standby serving a rather unconventional Spanish specialty.
If you speak Spanish, you’ve probably already picked up on what it is—the hint is in the name! This bar on Calle Toledo pours the best draft beer in town and serves a mean tapa of caracoles, or snails.
Squeamish? Don’t be—this is Madrid food at its finest. Here in the capital we are big fans of adventurous eating, and there’s no better place to do so than at a family-run bar that’s been perfecting their recipes for nearly 100 years!
Where to Eat in La Latina FAQs
La Latina forms the southwestern corner of the area considered the city center. It’s easy to access from famous Madrid sights such as the Royal Palace and Plaza Mayor.
La Latina is famous for its tapas street, Calle Cava Baja, which is a great place for a local bar and restaurant crawl. The neighborhood also hosts the famous El Rastro flea market every Sunday. Other can’t-miss places are the La Cebada Market and the San Isidro Museum showcasing local history.
Update Notice: This post was originally published on January 7, 2016 and was updated with new text and photos on May 14, 2021.Want our insider’s guide to eating in Madrid? Just add your email address in the form below!