Mercato San Miguel

Between food and literature: a tour of the stalls

In the heart of Madrid is a market that attracts locals and tourists alike. Its uniqueness also lies in its architectural beauty. A design that has made it a Property of Cultural Interest of the nation. Located in San Miguel Square, it is the centre of city life.

33 stalls alternate fresh, local produce with books on gastronomy and handicrafts. All in a building constructed and designed by Alfonso Dubè y Dìez in 1916.

“Over time it has undergone improvements and remodelling that have made it environmentally friendly”.

Little touches such as air conditioning, absent in the building, where humidified air is preferred. The original style of the San Miguel Market was inspired by the Les Halles markets in Paris and has a surface area of about 2000 square metres, with an underground area for storage.

What you can find is the whole of Spanish gastronomic history. There are counters where you can buy the products directly and areas for tasting them on site. It is a meeting place, a sort of reproduction of a city within a city, where the streets of the San Miguel market are lined with bars and shops. Today, after various renovations, it is the place to find the best Hispanic gastronomic products. The aim is to display and promote the best traditional products, as if it were a cultural gastronomic centre.

“Almost like a tapas bar, the San Miguel Market is the perfect place to sample local delicacies in small doses”.

Among the must-haves are the walking sliced meats, served in handy cones, so you can continue exploring without difficulty and try the tasty Jamon Iberico. Other practical finger foods are the Croquetas, fried croquettes flavoured with cheese, chorizo, fish and fresh vegetables. Accompany with fresh Cerveza or a mug of Tinto de Verano, the classic red wine washed down with lemonade or soda.

Not only street food and shopping at San Miguel Market. Even the most discerning of palates will find something to their liking in this covered market. Rich stalls of oysters and caviar alternate with the catch of the day cooked in creative and original ways. Not only fish, but also dairy products are reinvented as tapas. Madrid is a young city, open to innovation, and this market is proof of that.


Patrizia, born in 1992, graduated in Architecture at the Politecnico of Milano. I’ve always loved this world of stories, stories and construction techniques, but what really didn’t convince me was the idea of spending my life between subway trips, fixed schedules, patterns and habit. It was exactly in front of the possibility of having a permanent contract that I decided to leave for America. To do what, you may be wondering? To realize the first of my many dreams: being a cook. And here I am, writing stories of my travels, of the people I met during my transoceanic trips and handing down the recipes of the dishes I taste around the world.

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