Tag Archives: Madrid

Gluten Free Madrid

Again, I looked up a ton of different options for Madrid. For just a few days I had two breakfast places, some tapas places and dinner places so that we would have a wide range of choices and some backups in case places were closed or didn’t exist. Unfortunately like we discovered in Barcelona, sometimes places are closed when they say they will be open… or in the case of two different places in Madrid, they just didn’t exist anymore, even when they had been written about less than a year ago, had working websites and Google had no indications that they were permanently closed.


OH!CELIA bakery: This place ended up not existing. It was not a big deal because it was a short walk from the next place.
Celicioso: Gluten free bakery with sit down option. We had the lasagna for breakfast as well because we were really hungry for just cupcakes and cake, but it was just reheated in the microwave.


El Arrozal: Unfortunately, this place was also closed permanently, but luckily Bar el Taller was close by, so we ended up eating there instead.

La Crêp’: This was a crepe place that opened only around 2pm on Sunday. It was such a cold overcast day and all we wanted to do was go in somewhere warm to eat, but when the place opened up it was so cold inside. Spain is not made for cold weather! The food was very nice and I didn’t have any gluten reactions later. I ordered a mushroom and cheese crepe and later on a dessert crepe as well.

Bar el Taller: I loved this place! We arrived here because El Arrozal did not exist, which was frustrating that two of the places we tried to eat at on Saturday no longer existed, but I was really happy to find out that pretty much all the tapas at this place were gluten free and they even had gluten free beer, which has been very hard to find in restaurants on trips. I ordered two because I was so pleased and we all stuffed ourselves silly. 🙂

Mozzarella stack from Bar e Taller above.  Shrimp carpaccio below. Delicious!!

Complimentary strawberry dessert. Mmm.

Salad from a place near Kay’s brother below. In a pinch, we could do gluten free just by asking them to take care about certain ingredients and ordering the typical gluten-free salad with meat.

Overall, I wasn’t that worried about GF in Madrid. Spain is actually pretty good about celiac disease and they have a lot of options that you wouldn’t find in Germany, for example.

If you go, don’t miss out on the Serrano ham or the Iberian ham!


Mid-March my friend Grace visited Spain from NYC. Since we graduated design school together we have made an effort meet each other usually in NYC or Columbus, but Grace has also come to Zurich a couple times and when she started planning her Spain trip, she immediately asked me if I could meet her for a weekend. We had last seen each other in Baltimore last summer for a friend’s wedding.

Weekend trips in Europe are one of my favourite ways to meet with family and friends in Europe because I get to see and experience a new place as well. I had been to Madrid before, but Kay had not and his brother is actually living there at the moment, so we were planning on taking a trip this year to visit him anyway.

While it was 26ºC the weekend before we came, it did cool down to almost the same temperature at home around 14ºC, but it was sunny at least!

Language was funny. Kay’s brother is fluent in Spanish, so he did most of the talking to waiters. Kay and his brother obviously spoke Swiss German and any time I talked to Kay’s brother alone, I also used German, but with Grace we all spoke English. She also understood some Spanish, so the whole table was a mix of Spanish, German and English at times.

Selfie time! Some of the only time I get photos with my friends… but no selfie sticks for this girl. 🙂


The Palacio de Cristal, which doesn’t really hold up to the Franklin Park Conservatory in my eyes. It had a really creepy art installation in it when we visited.

Streets of Madrid.

The Almudena Cathedral, which was closed when we visited.

Royal Palace of Madrid below.

The train station where Grace left from, filled with trees!

Kay also managed to get us into the business lounge on the way back, so we could fill up a bit on snacks before our flight home.

Overall it was a great weekend. We walked a TON and although it was overcast and much windier and colder on Sunday, we ate well and enjoyed the time.

Do you ever meet old friends in new places?