madrid spotlight: toma cafe

Throughout my travels I have discovered many new things, people, products, passions, loves, and above all flavors. One of the best byproducts of traveling is merely walking the streets (preferably at an outdoor market) and sampling everything with a toothpick jabbed in it and even splurging a days salary on those cocoa powder covered almonds. Yeah, we’ve all been there! Recently, one of my culinary walks has led me to Malasaña, where I heard resides a cafe that supposedly produces the best coffee in Madrid. I hadn’t realized until recently how much I missed a perfectly crafted cup of joe until visiting Barcelona a couple days ago and discovering a delicious cafe called “Satan’s Coffee Corner.” Why the place is called Satan’s Coffee.. well you are going to have to ask the proprietor about that one. My guess is there was an exchange of services — a young mans soul for the freshest coffee beans available. It can happen…

Anyways, I chatted it up with the barista [baristo?] — Marcos — and he mentioned a cafe in Madrid called, “Toma Cafe.” I made a point to jot down the name on my bcn map so I could investigate the place myself. Now, I don’t necessarily consider myself a coffee connoisseur in the slightest bit. I’m the kinda girl who in college just needed caffeine streamlined into my arm and could really appreciate the fine tunings of some good ol’ fashioned diner coffee (I have a certain FBI special agent Dale Cooper to thank for that one). But on the other hand, I can also appreciate the delicious subtleties of a precisely pulled espresso shot and some perfectly steamed milk. And sometimes, I don’t even realize how much my taste buds are missing out until I get the real deal coffee treatment. If you’ve tried Portuguese coffee from a percolator than you know what I’m talking about. That stuff is silky smooth! But this cafe, definitely brought me back to the days of yore when I did work as a barista and had the luxury to sip local fresh coffee, and perfectly steamed milk whilst munching on freshly baked goods. Que rico! Oh, how I miss those lavender bars.

Entrada: Toma Cafe! The place is replete with a hanging bicycle, wooden benches with coffee pads for cushions, the echoes of surf rock blaring from the speakers, ornate china and antique tables decked out with pastas, bizcochos, and various galletas (what else can you ask for to be honest). The cafe is about a 15-20 minute walk from the center of Madrid — in the Bilbao/Tribunal area — and in my opinion worth the extra few miles walk from my normal cafe spot now. They also have dine on a dime prices (1.50 for a cafe con leche) and are situated right down the street from Plaza del 2 de Mayo park, where you can sit and watch passerbyers whilst sipping away your joe and feeling too European for your own good.

So, if you are a fan of specialty coffee, then Toma is the place for you. If you have no idea what specialty coffee is and are curious about reading up about it and think that in turn, you might be interested in trying it … then Toma is the place for you. If you like cozy neighborhood settings and supporting local businesses, Toma is for you. just go there. Toma.

located at:
Calle de Palma 49
28004 Madrid, Spain

+34 917 02 56 20


One thought on “madrid spotlight: toma cafe

  1. Alright kindred spirit, I agree, we should get together for one of these coffees (or booze, probably both) as soon as i get over to your (soon our) part of the planet. I’ll probably be a little overwhelmed which means I’ll need some quality lady time over a stiff anything.

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