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Dine like a Local at This Museum Garden in Madrid
Alyssa Brown
byAlyssa Brown

In today’s edition of bucket-list-worthy lunches, we’re headed to a museum in Madrid, where you can dine on the best local croquettes and charcuterie spreads followed by rice dishes and grilled meats. If there’s only one thing you already know about the capital of Spain, it’s that lunch is the biggest and most extravagant meal of every day. Taberna Arzábal serves a lengthy menu that lives up to that hype, in a garden setting you’re going to love.

Photography: Imma V Photography

Garden Dining in Madrid

Set in the gardens of Museum Reina Sofia, dining in the covered terrace is like dining inside a greenhouse. Transparent walls and ceilings create a shelter where diners are enveloped in the trees, vines and hanging plants of the gardens. There’s a private hall that can seat 25 diners if you’re planning to share your bucket list lunch with a crew, and there’s an outdoor terrace for those who prefer to feel the breeze.

Photography: Brayan Mesa

A Fresh Catch or Market Find

The culinary approach at Taberna Arzábal is all about what’s fresh and local. During an extravagant lunch here, you might dine on meat that’s been aged for 50+ days, the day’s catch, or something the chef stumbled upon at the market. Some of the menu fan favorites are the Iberian ham croquettes with sheep’s milk and salmorejo and the skillet of eggs with truffles. If you're in the mood to try a few small bites, check out the cheeses and aged meats for the table, and don’t miss the Cantabrian anchovies, and grilled artichokes. Because this is a bucket-list-worthy brunch, you’ll want to take your time perusing the list of 300+ bottles of wine, including single-vineyard options, natural wines, and organic wines. While you’re at it, you might even ask for a recommendation of which wine will pair best with your meal.

Photography: Brayan Mesa | mysevendays

A Museum, A Market and A Park

Taberna Arzábal is located in the gardens of Spain’s national museum, Museo Reina Sofía, which displays paintings, sculptures, drawings, prints, photographs, and installations from the late 19th century to present day. The primary focus of the museum collection is Spanish art, and temporary exhibitions are featured throughout the year. If you don’t have time for a lunchtime visit to the museum and a sit-down meal, small bites from the Arzábal team are served counter-style at Mercado de San Miguel. There’s also a sister restaurant from the same group overlooking Retiro Park. All offer a similar approach to dining, but each is a special bucket list experience of its own.

Obsessed with Brunch? We hear you. Check out our brunch bucket list for more hot spot →

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