Let’s set the scene for an unforgettable Valentine’s Day.
The sun is setting as the city slows from the hustle and bustle to a faint hum of activity. The street lights are illuminated, softly, slowly. The small neighborhood bars open. The red wine is poured. The romance arrives…
But we’re not in Paris. We’re falling in love with Madrid. And this isn’t just a short winter fling. Madrid is the slow-burning kind of romance. The kind of city that offers something new and exciting when you least expect it.
Leah Pattem knows what we’re talking about. She’s the creator and author of Madrid No Frills, a website dedicated to all things Madrid that shares locations for no-frills bars and food, as well as untold stories, the city’s history (the kind you won’t find in a school text book), and art.
Madrid No Frills was born out of Leah’s fascination with no-frills bars. You know the ones—they’re quaint and tucked behind a corner where no tourists venture.
“I’ve forever found no-frills bars inspiring spaces. They’re gateways to Madrid’s working-class soul, and are unpretentiously beautiful, just like the city. They’re also where Madrid No Frills was born, propping up the bar with acaña and a tapa and listening to the owner’s story”, she writes.
Leah compiled 100 no-frills bars of Madrid on her website to show the unique beauty and charm of each one. And while each bar certainly is “no frills,” with its tiny counter space and ultra-compact seating area, there’s also something magical about them.
The best part, though, is that each bar is conveniently located on Google Maps so you don’t even have to look like a lost tourist while discovering these gems!
Rachel Ruiz-Oakley is the Managing Editor of Slide Night.