4 Reasons to Have a Cocktail in Madrid

4 Reasons to Have a Cocktail in Madrid

Craft cocktails aren’t as popular in Spain as in some other countries. Many Spaniards have historically stuck to beer, wine, or the (very popular and very large) gin and tonics that dominate evenings and weekends all over the country. Madrid by contrast has developed a strong cocktail scene in recent years and has a number of highly regarded specialty bars. Here are four of the most essential stops for any cocktail enthusiast traveling to Madrid.

  1. Salmon Guru

Salmon Guru

Salmon Guru opened in 2016 under the leadership of experienced Argentinean bartender Diego Cabrera, and has quickly made a name for itself, being ranked as one of The World’s 50 Best Bars in 2018.  The bar serves exquisite craft cocktails, often in surprising custom-made vessels. The design features neon lightning bolts and comic book inspired BAM! signs. A definite must for any cocktail enthusiast in the Spanish capital.

2. Viva Madrid

Viva Madrid

Not satisfied to have only one excellent cocktail bar, Diego Cabrera decided in 2018 to revitalize a true Madrid classic. Viva Madrid was founded in 1856 as a tavern, and was a popular nightlife destination during Madrid’s movida in the 1980s. The decor has been left untouched, with tiles covering the outside and an interior more at home in the 19th century than the 21st. The cocktails are focused on classics, in contrast to nearby Salmon Guru, with a mission to serve forgotten greats and resurrect forgotten recipes.

3. Bar Cock


Bar Cock, despite the name, is a relaxed and classic cocktail bar founded in 1921. Originally popular with literary types, in the last few decades Bar Cock has been associated with numerous celebrities, from Pedro Almodóvar and George Clooney to the Spanish royal family. Walking through the doors will make you feel like you’ve travelled back in time, with an interior of dark wood and leather. Located just off the Gran Vía, this is a perfect place to leave the rush of Madrid behind for a while.

4. Angelita Madrid

Angelita Madrid

Angelita Madrid is best known as an excellent tapas & wine bar located just behind Madrid’s Gran Vía. There is also a top-tier cocktail bar, the American Bar, in the basement that specializes in cocktails using wine and products from the tiny herb garden located inside the bar. At the tables downstairs, it is possible to order wine from the extensive wine list, as well as food from a lighter menu.

For more Madrid see our Madrid & Historic Towns Tour