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“Elegantly Suburb ⭐️”
Review of Zalacain

Ranked #502 of 10,916 Restaurants in Madrid
Certificate of Excellence
Cuisines: Spanish, International
Dining options: Breakfast, Late Night, Reservations
Restaurant details
Dining options: Breakfast, Late Night, Reservations
Port Stephens, NSW, Australia
Level 3 Contributor
13 reviews
6 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
“Elegantly Suburb ⭐️”
Reviewed May 21, 2014

Attentive service, Beautiful cuisine, .....very friendly and personal welcome, felt like visiting a grand home, love the colours and the decor. Thank you for a perfectly memorable dining experience

  • Visited May 2014
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank 22Victoria22
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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402 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Rating summary
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
  • Turkish first
  • Any
English first
London, United Kingdom
Level 6 Contributor
357 reviews
200 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 198 helpful votes
“Highly recommended”
Reviewed May 17, 2014 via mobile

Service attentive. (We had private room though)

Food is very fine and good quality.

I liked the variety and choice in the menus - for every taste. Same re the desserts.

Overall highly recommended for upscale business dinners

1 Thank Valux01
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Beverly Hills, CA
Level 2 Contributor
7 reviews
4 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“Time Warp”
Reviewed November 2, 2013

And not a favorable one. When we arrived, I was wearing a dark blazer and slacks and they asked me to wear a tie. (My wife looked great and passed inspection.) But I was secretly pleased. A demanding classicism, I thought. How cool. But it was not to be.
The restaurant is leather banquets and linen tablecloths. Nice but unimaginative place settings. Modest art. An older (largely +50) clientele. So we fit right in.
Service throughout was polite but incredibly impersonal and in one case, bad. More on that to come.
The amuse bouche was embarrassing. nothing more than a potato puff.
My wife's prawn salad was tasteless and covered in mayonnaise. Beyond dull. My ravioli with mushrooms and a (very) little fois gras in a cream sauce was actually tasty. Traditional, but refreshing in that regard.
I ordered baby lamb rare. My wife had the roast chicken. When my lamb arrived, it was a dull gray. I remarked on that and was told that it was baby lamb and should never be served rare. That may be so, but someone could have said that to me. The lamb was decent, but no one on the wait staff ever came back to inquire if I was satisfied. It bordered on rude. My wife's chicken was fine, but nothing that either of us couldn't have roasted in a heartbeat.
But it was the vegetables that accompanied the main courses that were totally unacceptable: cold, overcooked, tasteless. Frankly, embarrassing if they had come from an institutional buffet.
The desserts were so poorly translated on the menu (no one in the restaurant spoke much English) that we ordered ice cream to be safe. Again, okay but so unimaginatively presented.
If this place was in France it would be roadkill. After two lovely meals in Madrid, we were really looking forward to Zalacain. At the prices, we figured it would be special.
It was so NOT. Consider yourselves warned!

  • Visited November 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
4 Thank RWCBeverlyHills_CA
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Spain
Level 6 Contributor
121 reviews
60 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 45 helpful votes
“Walkout with a smile.”
Reviewed October 27, 2013

Needless to say, the Zalacain is probably one of the best restaurants in Madrid. If you are in the neighborhood, stop by and order a tasting menu with your companion. Only then, you'll understand that not much needs to be said about the excellence of this cuisine.

  • Visited September 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank Wajdi A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
2 reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“An expensive disappointment - I will not give it a second chance”
Reviewed September 30, 2013

I went to Zalacain for dinner with my wife in our wedding anniversary, expecting a formal atmosphere and excellent food. There was a somewhat formal atmosphere, spoiled by the executive with a young woman in an excessively revealing dress. We had dinner in the main hall, with some very bad modern paintings hanging on the walls and a very tacky table centerpiece (quite hideous: a silver basket with apples and a green plant emerging from it) that we quickly set aside.
The Chefs de Salle had the looks of old hands of the Franco regime and were quite rude in making comments between themselves and with the waiters regarding our choice of menu and wine, even after we told them we understood Spanish quite well. I was surprised by the fact that the menu they offered my wife included prices (something I did not expect from such a formal restaurant). In contrast, the sommelier as well as the waiters were professional and efficient.
The real disappointment was the food. Excellent ingredients spoiled by bad concepts and a quality of execution that was far bellow par for such a restaurant. We started with the lobster salad. The lobster was overcooked, giving it a rubbery texture. It was accompanied by a heavy sauce that completely overwhelmed the shelfish: not the Sherry vinegar dressing advertised in the menu... It made me ask: what's the point? In a few bites I tasted the glory of the lobster, but too little and only after trying to clean the sauce off!
For the entrees we chose fish. I had the grouper ("Mero a la plancha com emulsion de vinagreta de marisco"). The fish was excellent but the dish was badly executed: the top was beautifully grilled but was simply too salty. As for the inner part of the fish, it basically had no salt at all. As for the sauce, It was bland and added nothing to the dish.
My wife had the sole fillets with soya and Kenyan bean sauce. Not the best concept: the sole was overcooked (she didn't eat more than a quarter of the portion), and the sauce was just too heavy for the fish.
Wondering what they couldn't ruin, we finished with a raspberry sorbet. That was excellent, as were the sweets served with coffee.
All in all, it may impress turists from other parts of the world with money to spend, but it definitely does not live up to the standard or to the reviews I read here at Trip Advisor. We will not return. Michelin should really improve their standards: one star? Not in my book!

  • Visited September 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
4 Thank mmsilva
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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