Are you a flavour seeker? Do your taste buds die when they touch bland food pretending to be something it is not? You are not alone, many of are just looking for the thrill of interesting flavours mixed together in almost unholy matrimony. MuchBites is here to tell you that your search can now stop. A new restaurant going by the name La Casa Tomada opened recently and has set our taste buds aflame. Situated very close to Tribunal Metro Station in Malasaña, their offering is the marriage of delicious bocadillos, amazing sharing size tapas and craft beers from Spain, the UK and North America. As if this was not enough, La Casa Tomada has gone a step further and created a rather welcoming environment conducive to group togetherness with their light and airy restaurant and big group tables. In an effort to bring art and gastronomy, the restaurant walls are dedicated to the exhibition of different art pieces from the community.
La Casa Tomada is a truly refreshing new entry to the ever expanding gastro-activities of Madrid. The restaurant is the product of two Venezuelan brothers who bring with them tales of an adventurous life in Venezuela in times gone by. Speaking to them, you cannot help but notice the passion they have for their restaurant and their food. The food is hugely influenced by their Venezuelan background, but hints of Spanish cuisine 2.0 are also evident. Their menu is so varied and delicious looking that you know you will be a repeat customer.
On our visit, we could not resist but rock the boat a little bit more than is necessary or even recommendable. We ordered an item from the starters, the salads, the chicken bocadillos and the roast beef bocadillos, and of course, dessert. We started off with the Casa Tomada salad which had the usual salad bits, bacon, Edam cheese and boiled egg. It was simple looking, even to the point of disappointing, but once we drizzled that homemade honey mustard dressing it came with and did the mixing, boy, did it turn out to not be enough. Tasty indeed it was, but as our first course, a little bit humdrum. But things heated up when our chilli cheese fries came. In a few words, they could be described as what happened when huevos rotos con patatas met chilli con carne. The spuds were cubed; crispy on the outside and fluffy on the inside. The chilli con carne was like a explosive flavour bomb. Everything was topped with melted cheddar cheese, generous amounts of red onion, jalapenos, fresh coriander, bacon and a sunny side up egg to finish off. Como los españoles, all that had to be done was to mix it all in, working that egg into the everything and then lap it up. In all fairness, we could have just ordered more of those chilli cheese fries and called it a night. However, in the efforts of being all encompassing with the post, the show had to go on.
Our roast beef bocadillo came. They say they roast the beef in house. The beef joint is marinated before roasting, then thinly sliced and fried slightly before serving. Our option had bacon, sautéed onions, Gouda cheese and a sprinkling of sea salt. Size wise, it was massive, thus perfect for sharing or as a one man thing for the bottomless stomach owners. One can say that it really is a pleasure to find well roasted beef in Spain. After the roasted beef sandwich, we tried the teriyaki chicken. It is safe to say that these guys really know what they are doing and they mean business. Every time we are out on MuchBites’ food hunts, it becomes ever clearer that Spain might just be the foodie future – no need to ever return home.
On the beer side of life, you will find some local favourites including the Malasana and Cibeles. We were definitely also surprised to find the Flying Dog and the Snake Dog. With the beef bocadillo, the Flying Dog was the perfect partner. For beer lovers, La Casa Tomada will keep you safe from those beers whose name shall not be mentioned.
When you go and you find yourself struggling to decide, La Casa Tomada also has other sections of the menu to throw in. Our sources tell us that the hotdogs are not to be messed with either. The menu boasts one by the name hotdog with everything. Yes, it has it all, from carrots, to avocado to potatoes et cetera, et cetera, and not forgetting the frankfurter sausage. Fun for everyone indeed.
All in all, La Casa Tomada has a bright future in our books and we are already raring to go for round two, three, four… Enjoy your visit there and do be sure to go in a good sized group to share it all. If you go to La Casa Tomada enough times, the owners will let you in on a secret that for us sent this place sky rocketing to new levels of cool.