Where to eat a good Fabada in Madrid? … and other Asturian delights.

Eating out & Madrid Restaurants, Traditional

by Marina Diez


When it’s cold in Madrid, nothing revives you like a good Fabada, the thick Asturian bean stew with chorizo, ham and morcilla (black pudding). Here are my three favourite Asturian restaurants to sample a great Fabada, as well as other Asturian delights:

Casa Portal:
This is a friendly and traditional restaurant, not far from the Retiro park. For an informal meal or great tapas, the tables located near the bar are fine. For a relaxed full lunch head further inside to the dinning area located beyond the end of the bar. As well as the Fabada, try the assorted Asturian Cheese plate, croquetas made of vegtables or a strong blue cheese called Cabrales, and the Asturian Omelette with white tuna, onion and tomato.

Metro: Ibiza, Goya, O’Donell Address: C/ Doctor Castelo, 26 Phone: 91 574 2026 Opening hours: 13:30-16:30 and 20:30-23:30. Closed Sunday night and all day Monday.

Casa Hortensia:
Formely located in a tiny restaurant in Lavapies, Casa Hortensia recently moved to a much bigger location on the second floor of the “Centro Asturiano” building just off Calle Fuencarral. They have two sittings for lunch, at 1:30 and 3 pm, and it’s essential to book. It’s really important to note that one portion of Fabada easily feeds two, so one Fabada, a Salad and another starter would be a great choice for two people – the same applies to Casa Portal.

Metro: Tribunal, Chueca Address: C/ Farmacia, 2 2º Phone: 91 5390090 Opening hours: 13:30-16:30 and 20:30-24:00. Closed Sunday night and all day Monday.

Casa Mingo:
Famous city-wide for its roast chicken, both to eat in or take away, this traditional family restaurant has excellent service, and is even better value than the two places mentioned above. Although the Fabada portion is smaller (and cheaper) here, Casa Mingo is always worth a visit for its great food and wonderful atmosphere.

Metro: Principe Pio Address: Paseo de la Florida, 34 Phone: 91 5477918 Opening hours: 11-24h.

See map below for restaurant locations:

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Comment from ValenciaSon
Date: February 18, 2008, 4:15 pm

Marina, your enjoyable article not only made me hungry, I think I gained 10 lbs just by reading it! When I try some Fabada, I hope to have the opportunity to do some serious walking afterwards. So it seems the least accessible restaurant offers the best Fabada. Thanks.

Comment from marina
Date: February 18, 2008, 11:39 pm

Thanks for your comment ValenciaSon. Hopefully you’ll be able to make it to Madrid soon so you can try the Fabada, and of course many other delicious things;-)


Comment from Richardksa
Date: February 20, 2008, 12:28 am

Ah! You highlighted one of my constant gripes. With most of my friends working during the day I usually eat lunch alone. (Not always – I am not devoid of friends that still take two hour lunches!!). But I often find what I call the “Chateaubriand Syndrome”; a meal designed to feed two that I would like to eat but a)know I won’t finish, and b)don’t want to pay for a huge portion that I know I won’t finish. So where, except in a can off a supermarket shelf, can I find Fabada for one.
I find the same thing in Madrid Chinese restaurants also, but that’s getting off the subject.
I love Fabada, missing as I do the Cassolet of France. I just wish I didn’t need a can opener to give myself a modest portion.

Comment from ValenciaSon
Date: February 20, 2008, 2:08 pm

Well I certainly hope to eat some fabada with my Notes From… friends real soon at one or more of these restaurants. We’ll give your can opener a rest, Richard.

Comment from Cairogal
Date: February 29, 2008, 5:22 pm

Oh heavenly fabada…one of my favourite dishes.