Although this gateway may evoke the entrance to Frances Hodgson Burnett’s “The Secret Garden” hidden away in the countryside, it is actually the entrance to a restaurant located in the center of Madrid with a courtyard that makes a perfect oasis for those hot summer nights. It is perhaps my favorite summer terrace.
But what lies behind all the greenery? Well, it is Sacha, whose owner gives name to his own bistro. Once inside with the blue-white color combination and the art work flooding the walls you are transported to a French bistro but with a lot more room between tables, thank goodness.
So, who is Sacha? Sacha is a funky T-shirt lover with a long ponytail who reminds you more of a retired rock star than a chef. Sacha is one of those people who can of course, carry on a conversation about food but also about photography, cinema, music… it is quite interesting to sit down and enjoy a conversation with him over a GT. He has been referred to as the chef of chefs, the retreat where all of the more media-known chefs go to eat on their days off but he has preferred to stay away from the limelight and it is quite common to hear him greet you with a, “but why don’t you go eat somewhere else where you really eat well?” while you just chuckle away surprised by his modesty.
In my opinion, the secret to Sacha’s cuisine is the apparent simplicity that lies behinds every dish of the upmost quality. Forgive me, but I feel that I must emphasis that the quality of the food is sublime.
He has taken huge cockles, added what appears to be a simple vinaigrette and the end result is a burst of happiness in your mouth. It is the kind of preparation which you never get tired of and you feel that you could eat at his restaurant every day of the year.
At our last lunch we had:
Anchovies (spanking clean which makes them a delight)
Warm fried rolls stuffed with salmon eggs (sorry, no pic)
Tortilla del vago (translated as the omelette of a lazy person because he never bothered to turn it over so the end result is that it is only cooked on one side)
Corujas Salad (which is a type of watercress that grows near water, the taste if very soft and subtle)
Tomatoes from Tudela (Tudela is a town in the region of Navarra in the north of Spain which is famous for its tomatoes)
Horse cecina (cecina is cured meat)
Perrechicos with pine nuts (perrechicos are a type of mushroom and they were served almost raw)
Marrow with a side of meat (This plate was quite fascinating because the side of meat surprisingly helped clean the palette from the marrow. Although it might sound heavy, it was delicious, one of our favorite dishes in the meal.)
Leche merengada with coffee sorbet (Leche merengada is a typical Spanish dessert which consists of whisking milk with egg whites and adding sugar and cinnamon and is served cold)
Tocino de cielo (This is another typical Spanish dessert which is made with egg yolks. It reminds you of a flan but much richer)
After this spectacular lunch, all I have to say is that I can’t wait for the terrace to open!
Calle de Juan Hurtado de Mendoza 11 (the actual entrance is at the back of the building)
913 45 59 52
Average price without drinks 50 €