The moment we booked our latest holidays in Spain we made our reservation at Bibo Madrid, the new restaurant of Spanish Chef Dani García. We finally got a table at Bibo Madrid! It’s a long story: last Summer, when we heard this new concept, a mix of traditional classics and nomadic cuisine, was opening in Madrid we tried to book a table, but sadly we came back to Germany before it opened. Bad timing. Last Christmas we tried again, but couldn’t make it because it was fully booked for the whole holidays. So this time we were determined: we were going to make it! And we did!
After all the waiting and failed attempts, Bibo Madrid did not disappoint. Quite the opposite, we were mesmerised by the incredible food, the attentive service, the fun atmosphere… and the bathrooms, graced by the sound of birds! They’ve thought about every detail to make a dinner at Bibo Madrid a delightful experience. Everything was perfect.
We started with a cocktail, of course. The innovative menu in the form of original playing cards is full of fresh proposals to work up an appetite. We chose the Thai Cooler, sweet yet sour, refreshing and served in a gorgeous coconut glass, and for me, a non alcoholic cocktail with red berries, lime and mint. We drank both of them quicker than we should have, but they were so tasty we couldn’t help it. And while we were sipping our cocktails and getting in a real good mood, a couple of appetizers were brought to the table: homemade bread with French butter and crunchy fried pork rind. I’ve never liked fried pork rind, a traditional Spanish tapa, but we fought for the last bit of this fried pork rind. It was that good.
The waiter came to our table to take our orders but we honestly didn’t know what to do. Everything looked so tempting that we were in awe. We knew we wanted fish and seafood. Here in Germany we can’t eat it and growing up in Spain you eat plenty of fresh fish and seafood, so you learn to love it from a young age, appreciate it…. and, therefore, we miss it terribly. When we discussed our doubts with the waiter he recommended a few things that we never thought we would like, but we loved. And that’s one thing that you should do at Bibo Madrid: let the staff advise you, pay attention to what the waiters recommend because as weird as the dish may sound, you will love it. So we ended up ordering a few plates to share, that way we could try a little bit of everything.
We started with braised artichokes with payoyo cheese and smoked wagyu ham. It was delicate and light and we loved the touch of cheese, that added a really nice creamy texture. Then we had the oxtail brioche. This was one of the wonderful recommendations of our waiter and the proof that maybe something you wouldn’t order at the beginning can become your favourite dish. And what a dish! Creamy, rich, full of that classic Spanish stew flavour. It’s tiny because it’s strong and dense, but we were tempted to order more of that insanely good brioche. Luckily we controlled ourselves, because we still had lots of food coming. And we wanted dessert.
We continued with Dani García’s version of the traditional Andalusian fried dishes. If you have ever visited Andalusia you will know that you can have the most amazing fried dishes, mainly fish and seafood, in its restaurants, bars and beach huts. Dani García has taken that traditional technique to another level and offers in his menu plenty of different options. We opted for the creamy ham croquettes and the crunchy Sanlúcar langoustines.
The croquettes were very different from your average croquette. They were covered in a rich dough that made quite a contrast with the creamy interior. To be honest, this is the only dish we wouldn’t order again. It was delicious, but really, really, really fulfilling. On the contrary , the langoustines were so good you could eat dozens of them. Wrapped in basil and a light crispy dough, they came with a sauce that probably was nectar of the gods. One of the best options of the menu, no doubt.
And last but not least, the incredible smoked tuna tartar. This dish is a complete experience for the senses: on the one hand is absolutely beautiful and tastes amazing and, on the other hand, it smells heavenly. During our dinner we were sometimes surprised by a delicious smoked scent, and every time we would notice it we would start looking around asking: What is that? Where does it come from? Well, when the waiter brought the plate with a glass cover full of smoke and opened it in the table we were all oooohhhs and aaahhhs, that was it and we were lucky to have ordered it! Once you mix all the ingredients in the plate you get a creamy, soft, rich tuna with fresh and citric touches. The best tuna tartar we’ve ever eaten, hands down.
And it was time for dessert, but sadly we just couldn’t order it. I blame the croquettes… well, that had been a feast so no wonder we didn’t have space for one of the amazing desserts in the menu. I left my heart with the Nutella to dye for and the chocolate and extra virgin olive oil but we ordered a couple of herbal teas instead. That’s a reason to come back, isn’t it?
And just like that our two hours in the table came to an end and the waiter brought our check. This you should know: during the most crowded times, you can have the table just for two hours. At first we were a little bit worried, but the truth is that we weren’t rushed at all and the timing was perfect. All in all, we can’t recommend Bibo Madrid enough: we left planning our next visit (maybe for their Sunday Brunch?) and sending pictures to all our foodie friends. The restaurant is fun, it’s beautiful and the food is out of this world. The music in the background gets you in the most lively dance mood (we, grannies, almost went out dancing afterwards… almost, because we had a very early appointment the following morning and we are very responsible ladies), there is a wonderful relaxed vibe that combines perfectly with the fine dining experience, the decor is a modern twist on classic Andalusian kitsch and the service is really kind. So, next time you are in Madrid, book your table here.
Bibo Madrid, Paseo de la Castellana 52, Madrid.