THE REAL MADRID: 5 Picks for Your Next Cafe-con-Leche

By Charlotte Gilliland




Tucked away in the barrio of Las Letras, this intimate cafe housed on Calle de Fucar is perfect for curling up with a warm cup of tea and your favorite book on a rainy day. After exploring the historic literary barrio, it won’t take much for the tranquil, cool colors of Azul to catch your eye. Perfect for coffee, tea, fresh smoothie or a delicious pick from their sandwich menu, Azul won’t disappoint. Calle Fúcar, 1.


Toma Cafe


According to some, Toma Cafe might be the spot for the best cup of coffee in Madrid. And although this little coffee shop is located in what might be the hippest neighborhood in the city, Toma Cafe doesn’t need Malasaña’s help attracting a crowd. Self-proclaimed “casa de cafes & espressos,” this cafe could take root in any location, and there’s no question that everyone –hipsters and beyond –would be drawn in by the delicious coffee aroma. With its latte art, strong espressos, scrumptious cake and even its simple toast and jam for breakfast, Toma Cafe will keep you coming back for more. Bring your laptop, your friends, and maybe even your dog. Calle de la Palma, 49.


Swinton and Grant

Swinton & Grant CafeIn the mood for art, coffee and shelves full of books all in one spot? Then Swinton and Grant in Lavapies has got you covered. Perfectly balanced between the three, the walls of this coffee shop and art gallery are plastered by intricate designs, street art, and rows upon rows of books, comics and zines to catch your eye. After you grab your coffee, saunter through the Swinton Gallery downstairs, a space for emerging artists to both sell and display their work that encompasses a variety of disciplines from street art and illustrations to photography and more. Right between the Lavapies and Embajadores Metro stops, Swinton and Grant is just right for both your coffee and art fix (and maybe your sweet tooth too). Calle Miguel Servet, 21.




Stumble upon this cafe by accident, and you may think you’ve entered an alternate universe. And that alternate universe might just be a place called Heaven (unless you for some reason hate healthy vegetarian food then, unfortunately, this might not be the place for you). Tiyoweh offers a paradise of coffee and tea, delectable desserts, vegetarian options and a friendly staff.

The word “Tiyoweh” comes from a Native American word meaning a “stillness of the heart as one enters the stillness of the mind.” And there’s no doubt that this peaceful cafe seeks to offer everyone a type of tranquility, whether it be through Hatha yoga, natural therapies, workshops or classes. All accompanied by free wifi, of course. Calle San Pedro, 22.


Mama Framboise

Mama Framboise from Facebook

Finally, for a more traditional vibe, and maybe for the Francophiles out there, pop by Mama Framboise, the original French boulangerie/patisserie in Madrid for a perfect latte and a mouthwatering croissant. Filled with natural light, a bustling atmosphere, and a delightful menu, Mama Framboise is perfect for cozying up with that day’s newspaper, grabbing a coffee with friends, or a lunch date with this cafe’s rich goat cheese and caramelized onion sandwich. Calle de Fernando VI, 23.



Featured image by Judy Dean, CC BY2.0, Flickr
Azul, Toma Cafe, Tiyoweh: C. Gilliland

Swinton & Grant: Their official website, fair use
Mama Framboise: Their Facebook page, fair use


Charlotte Gilliland: A lover of coffee, podcasts, and the sounds of a bustling city, she’s eagCHARLOTTE ID picer to explore each corner and crevice of Madrid where she lives at present. Charlotte is a member of the Guidepost staff.