Spanish version


Lhardy

Lhardy is located at  Carrera de San Jeronimo number 8.Carrera de San Jeronimo

It was founded in 1839 by the Swiss Emil Huguenin. He had been working in a luxurious restaurant in Bordeaux, France. During the reign of Fernando VII the exiles living in France used to visit his restaurant. When they came back to Spain they missed such a kind of restaurant and asked him to open one in Madrid. So it became the first luxury restaurant of the capital.

It  was also the first restaurant offering catering facilities. Among the upper classes it became a custom to order their Lhardymeals at Lhardy. They brought, and bring, not only the food but also the crockery and cutlery, if you want. They even have  golden tableware. Some of its pieces can be seen in the delicatessen shop downstairs.

The restaurant is on the first and second floor. There are a few private rooms which were used by  Queen Isabel II to meet her many lovers. It has always been a characteristic of the restaurant, that if the door of the room is closed, the waiters do not enter.

Also Queen Isabel´s son, Alfonso XII frecuently went to Lhardy. There was a sentence often used, "I have seen the King, he was going to Lhardy."

It has a room called the "Japanese Room" decorated with original Japanese lamps, wallpaper and paintings. This type of decorating was very popular in those days. It has to be said that everything you see in Lhardy is original, i.e. the furniture, the wallpaper, the decoration. Mata Hari liked to dine in this room.

The Marques de Salamanca, a very wealthy man, even built his palace without a kitchen. "There is Lhardy, I do not need a kitchen", he said.

Lhardy is very popular because of its "Cocido", which you can have at lunchtime. They have an extensive menu and eating there is like being part of history.

Downstairs, in the delicatessen shop, you can find exclusive food to buy. Also little tapas or croquettes. They are in an original container. The typical thing to do is have a tapa and a cup of clear soup, with or without sherry. The client just takes what he wants and before leaving tells the cashier what he or she has had. The people from Lhardy trust their clients, they have done so for nearly two hundred years.

Visiting Lhardy is a must! And taste the clear soup, specially in winter!

@Copyright 2008, 2009 Mª Dolores Diehl Busch. All rights reserved.
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