I’ve finally succumbed to the cold. In the grips of cabin fever, I’m left with nothing to do except
catching up on uni work read my book on Felipe II, and blogging. It’s All Saints Day today, which means – you guessed it – a Tuesday Bank Holiday! The metro to work yesterday had about four people on it, as a lot of people had taken the day off as a long weekend; I was therefore able to sit in a corner and sneeze to my heart’s content.
My parents arrived last Tuesday and we kicked off the visit with the wine bar/bookshop Ruairidh and I had sleuthed out on Day One, Tipos Infames. Ya can’t say better than that. Over the course of their stay we also went to:
- Cervezas La Fábrica in Las Letras barrio, which is a very no-frills bar where we had the best octopus I’ve ever had (slice it up, olive oil, salt, paprika – what more do you want?), lots more fab seafood, and very sketchy squid stuffed with squid (squidception);
- La Gloria de Montera on Calle Montera, where Adrián had taken Ruairidh and I on the Bank Holiday Wednesday, which has top food and is really great value (and they also have a good-looking dessert menu which I’ve always been too full to try out – but that just leave us open to a future review!); and who could forget…
- Lateral on Calle Fuencarral: this is absolutely due a proper review soon, because although it is filled with guiris it is also the best place ever and I take everybody here on their first night in Madrid. Sophia took me there on my first ever night in Madrid, back in 2012, and I will take her when she comes to visit at the end of the month. It’s all coming full circle…
We went to the rooftop bar at the Círculo de Bellas Artes by Banco de España – which I had already been to a couple of nights earlier with Adrián (the King of Rooftop Bars). Here is the night/day comparison:
The views are great, and if you walk up the grand, sweeping stairs dotted with statues then you can peek into the halls where they hold concerts and dinners and such.
We went to the Museo Sorolla, which is the house of Joaquín Sorolla, a Spanish Impressionist painter who made it very big and became a baller (probably would have been invited to dinners at the Círculo de Bellas Artes), but still like to paint his wife and children and the beach a lot. He loved experimenting with capturing light and water, and competing with John Singer Sargent. The house is full of his paintings, and of beautiful statues and art deco fireguards and such, and is really faithfully preserved. And to top it off, the courtyards outside have a ton of fountains and nudey figures.
And of course there was the Toledo day trip, which you can read about here.
And finally, we bought new wine massive glasses and I couldn’t live without knowing whether you could fit a whole bottle of wine in one. So I did.
That reminds me, actually: Ruairidh and I went to a wine tasting over at the Westin Hotel by the Prado, and for 20€ it was, to use the Jimmy Chung’s Chinese Buffet nomenclature, ‘all you can drink’. Being Spain, almost everything was Spanish, or at a stretch Portuguese, but we tried some stoaters. And Ruairidh got angry on the way home because McDonalds here don’t sell Chicken Legends.