Wednesday, April 04, 2007


Is it my imagination, or do comings and goings happen faster in Madrid than elsewhere? I was walking around Chueca yesterday, and was moderately surprised to find that The Wok, which I'd swear I had eaten at just a couple of months ago, had metamorphasized into Original. No loss there, but still it was a bit of a surprise: white and beige instead of red and black, birch trunks growing from the floor instead of chopsticks on the table, and a menu whose main ingredients come sourced (partridge from Toledo, cheese from Extremadura) instead of invented by some poor Spaniard pretending to understand Asian food.

But the biggest shock was to see Taberna Carmencita, the old-fashioned bistro beloved by Lorca (and by me), transformed into an Italian restaurant. And not even Italian: Italo-Argentine. The tiles are still there in their astonishing voluptuousness, but what used to be squid in its ink and braised beef cheeks is now arugula pesto and empanadas. Worse, the exterior is as blue as it was once red. Look closely and you can still see the logo--Taberna Carmencita surrounded by a flowery border--etched in the door's glass.

1 comment:

madrid teacher said...

Although the pace of life and waiting for things in Spain can seem eternal, setting up or changing businesses happens in a Flash, everytime I return to Valencia there seems to be 14 new bars, 10 restaurants and a couple of discos changed venue and thats in one barrio.