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Botin is a traditional restaurant offering Mediterranean cuisine.
The average price of a main course dish at the Botin restaurant is 18 euros. The average price of a 3-course meal at the Botin restaurant is 40 euros.
Note that although GoMadrid.com strives to maintain all information about Botin up to date, the prices mentioned are only an indication and may not reflect the exact value of your meal.
Read customer reviews of the Botin restaurant, or write one yourself here
Complimentary bottle of house wine at Botín with the Madrid Card! Click here
According to the Guinness Book of Records (see certificate), this is the oldest restaurant in the world, dating from 1725. The restaurant is also mentioned in the book Fortunata y Jacinta by Benito Pérez Galdós (published 1886-1887) and Goya supposedly worked here before becoming a painter. Hemingway was a frequent visitor and pronounced it one of his favourite restaurants.
Today, the restaurant is decidely a tourist spot, since it appears in so many guides. Don't let that put you off, though, becase Spaniards still go here to sample the excellent food, specialities being cochinillo asado (roast suckling pig) and cordero asado (roast lamb). The restaurant in housed in a XVI century building in the old part of Madrid and really is a must when visiting Spain's capital.
Botin was founded by Frenchman Jean Botin and his spouse, and was originally called Casa Botín. It was inherited by a nephew of theirs called Candido Remis, thus explaining the change of name to Sobrino de Botín, which survives to this day.
It consists of four floors of tiled, wood-beamed dining rooms, with caste-iron ovens several centuries old. As you eat, you may find yourself serenaded by the ocassional "tuna", a musical group formed by students and playing traditional songs in traditional dress, complete with knickerbockers.
You can see Botín's menu in English here, and in Spanish here
Both menu files are over 500Kb and in PDF format so may be downloaded and printed.
The dining rooms at Madrid's Botin restaurant ...
Please click photos to enlarge
The bodegas or cellars
The Castilla rooms
The Felipe IV rooms
A few years ago, the GoMadrid webmaster visited Botin and offers the following account:-
The Botín restaurant dates from 1725, when the ground floor of what was previously a small inn (since the late 16th century) was reformed and around the same time a log-fired, cast-iron oven installed. This type of oven is typical of Castillian restaurants, where roasts of all types (meats, fowl) are the mainstay of Castillian cuisine. The restaurant has 4 floors and is located in Cuchilleros street, a short walk from Plaza Mayor.
We had reserved a table for 22.00h earlier the same day, but I would recommend making a reservation a couple of days before if possible since Botín fills up every single day of the week. As soon as you enter the restaurant, you realise that more than 75% of the clientele are tourists. Botín figures in every known guide to Madrid and it's a stop-off point for most tourists, but this shouldn't put you off, since the food makes no concessions to the visitors - it's standard Spanish cuisine of the type to be found all over Castille, and the setting deserves at least one visit.
You enter on the ground floor and are shown to 1 of several dining rooms. We ate downstairs in the "bodega" or old wine cellars (see photo above). Main courses in Spanish restaurants can be very spartan where vegetables are concerned and Botín is no exception. This is just the way it goes- the Spanish tend to separate their vegetables and serve them up as starters.
My partner, Anabel, ordered sauteéd artichoke hearts and I had a plate of green beans, both dishes served with small chunks of Spanish cured ham and sprinkled with olive oil. The portions were large, very large and we discovered that this was a comforting trend throughout the meal. In fact, it justifies the price somewhat, since Botín is more expensive than similar establishments.
For the main course Anabel ordered grilled fillet mignon with mushrooms, Botín style, and I had roast suckling pig - their speciality - with roast potatoes. The fillet steak came in two huge pieces and covered with the mushrooms and sauce. Anabel said the meat was tender and tasty, if a little salty. My suckling pig was incredible - the meat was really tender and covered in what we call "crackling" in the north of England - the crisp, roasted skin which cracks when cut and tastes simply delicious. Again, the portion was more than enough. We washed all of this down with a bottle of red house wine - adequate, but connosieurs will need to ask for the wine list - and a jug of water.
For desert, Anabel had an incredibly thick slice of pineapple soaked in sherry and I went for the lemon sorbet. Our coffee - "cortados" - finished off the proceedings. Throughout the meal the service was brisk, and a little impersonal, probably because there were so many people to attend to.
In general I could say the following ... that it was well worth the visit, but I would probably not repeat. I had wanted to go to Botín for a long time and I am glad I made the effort. However, I have also been to similar restaurants like Casa Lucio and Posada de la Villa and I would definitely go back to those, but not Botín. I think this is mainly because of the overly tourist atmosphere. I would, however, recommend anybody to go just once for the experience. The food and service are good and even with all the tourists, this is still a typically Spanish restaurant where Spaniards DO go (the King and well known politians are known to dine here from time to time).
And it's great to be able to say you've eaten in the world's oldest restaurant!
We recommend avoiding disappointment by booking your table at the Botin on this page
The nearest Metro station is La Latina.
Please see the Botin restaurant location map below.
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