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madrid friends (1)While I was in London, staying at Jo & Mark’s place, somehow the idea came up that it would be fun to pop up to Madrid for a couple of days and visit Jo, who is there taking flamenco classes all of August. Checking the calendar I saw that I could comfortably squeeze in a quick two-night “getaway” between London and Galicia, so what the heck. I found a nice hotel – Casual Madrid del Teatro – at a good rate (which turned out to be just around the corner from Jo’s apartment and almost next door to my favourite sherry bar La Venencia) so it really couldn’t have been more perfect.

I arrived Sunday midday and, after checking in, met Jo at La Venencia for a quick sherry before heading over to David Muñoz’s fabulous StreetXO, which I was dying to try again. I also hadn’t been to their new location in calle Serrano. But it turned out to be a bit of a walk (read: Death March) in the HEAT and when we finally arrived they had just closed off the queue for the lunchtime service. Undaunted, we decided to try Cascabal next door, run by another michelin star chef, Roberto Ruíz, whose PuntoMX is the only Mexican restaurant in Europe with a star. It was a fabulous late lunch that later segued into an evening tapeo back in the centre of town, with a lot more walking and bar hopping involved. Food pics are over here.

madrid friends (2)Somewhere close to midnight we finished our outing as we’d started it, with a penúltima sherry at La Venencia. And by one of those very random of coincidences ran into our mutual friend (and sherry educator) Mómoko from Jerez (!!!).Which led to another penúltima (or two). Mómoko was just in town for the day doing research for a book she is writing. I mean, seriously, what were the odds? This was also when I decided to stay an extra night, which proved to be an excellent idea.