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Jul 20, 2010 07:47 PM

Your favorite places in Lisbon and Madrid to celebrate a 40th birthday getaway!

Heading to Lisbon and Madrid for a week to celebrate a friend's 40th birthday. Looking for great places for 2 girls on the town to enjoy everything from fine dining (especially for the big night) to casual tapas. Excellent seafood, cheeses, meats and wines a must! Send me your faves!

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  1. I would highly suggest searching the logs/archives of this board, since this is a rather popular request for both cities. I have posted significantly on Lisbon, so here are some threads that might help.

    Boa Sorte!

    1. My faves in Madrid:
      "Casa Rafa" on Calle Narváez # 68. High price for best quality, antiquated decor, old fashioned staff... but Casa Rafa is a mecca for best seafood: crayfish (cigalas), spider crab (centolla), barnacle (percebes), clams (almejas), razor-shell (navajas), shrimp (gambas), hake cheeks in sauce (cocochas), excellent roasted turbot (rodaballo). Also, excellent jamón ibérico, even very good Russian salad (ensaladilla).
      "Asador Ansorena" on Calle Capitán Haya # 55. Basque restaurant with GREAT T-bone steaks.
      "Gonzalez" on Calle León # 12. A cool deli where you can find wines and cheeses of Spain. The cutest thing in this "bar-shop-restaurant" is its big windows. When you sit down just behind them you can watch the passing people while you are enjoying a nice cheese with a delicious wine.
      "Angel Sierra" on Plaza de Chueca. Traditional Madrilenian tavern. Try the "vermut de grifo" (vermouth on tap) with a tapa called "pincho de escabeche" (marinated tuna).
      "Stop Madrid" on Calle Hortaleza # 11, near Angel Sierra. A tavern for having a glass of red wine with jamón.
      Doing tapas in La Latina: "Juanalaloca" on Plaza Puerta de Moros. Good but pricey Basque tapas for two people sharing. The "pincho de tortilla" is a must. "Txirimiri" on Calle Humilladero # 6. Assorted tapas.

      4 Replies
      1. re: JuanDoe

        Mr. Doe. Per your one of your past suggestion to another diner we dined at Asador Ansorena this last Sunday. We did not eat meat but had a great sea bream <I'm getting attached to this lillte fish> and spouse had the cod fish, both delicious and very fresh. Sides were the amazing and so very tasty white asparagus from Navarre, and the Guernica pimientos <cooked in a similar way like pimientos Padron>. Ending with an arroz con leche and flan The table next to us, a family including the grandparents ordered the grilled meat for the table that looked very delicious and made a mental note to get it for our next future visit.

        On another note, after trying to get reservations at Diverxo <calling 2 weeks ahead for either Fri or Sat> we were not successful and kept on a waiting list. So this past Sat night wanting simple fish and not wanting to go to a gallego restaurant and having no idea where to dine in the Salamanca section we checked chowhound on our I-Phone and decided to follow aerobmadrid's suggestion of La Cazorla, where we dined on Andalucian fish a la plancha. It was satisfying and good. La Cazorla is a nice neighborhood restaurant and a good choice if you're at a loss of where to go.

        So thank you both.

        1. re: Quimbombo

          glad someone tried La Cazorla at last, and very glad you liked it - as you say, it's a nice neighborhood restaurant; decent price and quality. We love the plates of salted almonds that they leave you to nibble on while you wait.

          1. re: arobmadrid

            The spouse devoured them. LOL! I only managed a couple.

            Thanks again.

            PS. Have you tried El Espigon in Madrid? We dined at the one in Sevilla <not the one in the Felipe ll hotel> the Monday before last, superb and incredibly fresh fish. I'm looking forward to trying the one in Madrid which doesn't seem to be too far from Asador Ansorena.


          2. re: Quimbombo

            Diverxo seems to be the hardest reservation in town - not helped by their communication!
            I was told to get back 1 month in advance - but, I'm now guessing, they meant the 1st of the previous month. When I contacted them exactly 1 month early they were completely full for the rest of the month!
            They also offered to call me if an opening occurred - never got a call!

        2. Lisbon to celebrate: for fine dining, decor service and atmosphere, first look at Tavares. It has received its first Michelin rosette this year.