In the northern part of Madrid is the commercial district, with HQ’s like Google. This has a little less hustle and bustle than the centre, but is still host to a good selection of restaurants and cafes to accommodate the workers and local residents. There is a shopping centre which has a huge Mango. There is also a Zara, Massimo Dutti and Intimissimi. Essentially not a flood of stores, just a few of the right ones. This area is also home to Santiago Bernabeu Stadium, Real Madrid’s home Football Club. A couple of blocks south of the stadium is where we had a lunch in the sun.
Volapie is a combination of outside and inside dining. A weather protected terrace area sits in front a clean, bright and modern tapas bar. The outside area is just off the main road, so not too much traffic to interupt your experience. On our visit there was a beeping van nearby as a car had parked and blocked his free movement. Annoying for him I am sure, but even more so for us outside diners having to listen to the incessant noise. We were delighted when they finally sorted out their dispute. We sat amongst a mixture of affluent youth and stylish middle aged guests.
The menu was very simple with a focus on fish, olives, cheese and generally, seafood tapas. A chilled glass of wine later and I was ready to order. I went for the row of prawns in the shell, because the picture looked great. When it arrived, it was very fresh and perfect in texture and taste, just a wee bit on the small side. There was also some seafood tapas with shavings of cured tuna and ling roe, crisps, peanuts and olives. Again, the picture looked appetizing, but the fish shavings tasted really bitter. I like most fish, so that’s why I took a leap of faith in ordering it. I must say, the bitterness of this type of fish serve is not really my cup of tea. My dining pal, Lydia, had gazpacho to start with ham and egg added and for her main course she had what she described as a Galician favourite dish of bienmesabe, which was essentially monkfish in light batter. I did have a taste of it, and it was a little bit bland.
I think what was appealing about Volapie was its location, a quiet side street. A well behaved chilled crowd made for great neighbouring diners and the outside terrace allowing the sunshine to beat down on us was also good. The food however, on this occasion, was not a draw. If you want to just have a chilled glass of wine, then definitely come here. For the food, I would need to come back and try some other things before I strongly recommend it.
Taberna del Volapie
Paseo de la Castellana 124