Gourmet Madrid: Culinary Trip to Spain

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All booking details and payment are handled through Insider's Travel. All inquiries are handled by Carly directly via phone +44(0)7711071665 or by email carly@insiderstravel.io


Join us in Madrid for cooking classes, market shopping, paella making, tapas hopping, winery tours and Flamenco! Anne and Lili love exploring Mediterranean cuisine in cooking classes in the Teaching Kitchen. Now, it's time to make those delicious dishes in their home - Madrid! Read on for the day-by-day plan. It's packed with delicious food and learning - plus free time to explore on your own. Join us!

All tour activities will begin each day from the Four Star Pestana Plaza Mayor Hotel located on Madrid’s most square in heart of the city. Surrounded by shops, restaurants and bars, a five-night stay the Pestana Plaza Mayor Hotel is an optional, add-on for the trip. Facilities include a spa, fitness centre, rooftop pool (subject to weather) and a restaurant with courtyard garden. 


The touring activities will begin each day from the comfortable Four Star Pestana Plaza Mayor Hotel, located on Madrid’s most historical square in the heart of the oldest part of the city. It is surrounded by shops, restaurants and bars. Built in a former fire station and butcher’s guild, the design incorporates a lot of original features and the colour palette is a nod to Madrid’s Golden Age in the 17th century. Facilities include a spa, fitness centre, rooftop pool (subject to weather) and a restaurant with courtyard garden

We have secured a mixture of Superior Plazor Mayor and Premium Plaza Mayor Rooms should you wish to book this optional accommodation. Read through to the pricing section for room pricing and a detailed description of rooms. 

Day 1. Tuesday, October 1, 2024
Arrival & Welcome Tapas Bar Hop
Tapas: a delightful cultural and culinary journey through Madrid. We will visit authentic restaurants - favorites of locals. We'll try cecina from Castile and Leon, Mozarabic dishes from Andalucia like cason en adobo. We will learn the history and cultural significance of various tapas and paired Spanish wines. Tapas bar hopping is a very social affair and this will be a lovely intro to the city and its food. All food and drink included.

Day 2. Wednesday, October 2
Tapas Cooking Class + Olive Oil Tasting
We will meet Gabriela Llamas, a well-known chef, food writer and instructor for the week in her beautiful studio around the corner from the Royal Palace.

We will start the day with a Sommelier-led Spanish Olive Oil tasting. Olive Oil is a significant part of Spanish culture and cuisine, with a long 3000-year history. The Spanish use it in absolutely everything, from morning till night, so we start this first day learning when to use which oils.

In this cooking class, we will prepare a selection of classic tapas dishes taking influence from regions across Spain. For example Coca, a traditional Mallorcan vegetable pie, potato omelettes, Shrimp al ajillo, Marinated cecina, Stuffed piquillo peppers with cheese, and Matrimony tapa.

The class will end in the afternoon as we gather together at the table to enjoy the tapas lunch with a selection of wines, cheese and accompaniments, such as quince paste & apricot jam. All food and drink included.

The remainder of the day and evening is yours for exploring. Insider's Travel can arrange a wonderful selection of optional activities for free time in the city.

Day 3. Thursday, October 3                  
Paella Cooking Class + Market Tour
The day starts early as we head to market! Gabriela will accompany us on a visit to a local Spanish fresh food market where we will pick out our ingredients for the day. Plus, we will learn about how markets are used in modern day Spanish culture.

Back at the studio, we will make Paella! This dish is known internationally for its link to Spain, but there are a wide variety of Paella dishes and they all tell the story of the dish and the country. Originating from Valencia, Paella is a piece of Mediterranean heritage: a well-balanced combination of Spanish, Roman and Arab cultures.

While the Paella bubbles away, we will make dishes such as Hake in Green Sauce or Chicken Pepitoria. Flourless chocolate cake will round out the meal. 

The class will end in the afternoon as we gather together for lunch eating paella and other dishes prepared during the class along with a selection of wines. All food and drink included.   

Day three ends with a guided visit to the Prado Museum with a highlights tour of the Prado focusing on Velázquez, Titian and Goya. The evening is yours to explore on your own.       

Day 4. Friday, October 4             
Ribera del Duero Winery Tour, Barrel Tasting and Cave Tour
We will depart together at 10am with our expert wine guide - transport included - for an exploration of Madrid's beautiful wine region. We begin this morning at an internationally awarded winery for a full tour and tasting direct from the barrel. This will be particularly special tasting their high-end wines. Here we will stay for a traditional lunch with the owner dining on milk-fed lamb. All food & drink included.

In the afternoon, we will travel back in time to a winery led by a true pioneer in Spanish winemaking - the founder of the Ribera del Duero appellation created in 1982. We will enjoy a private tour through the magnificent, 16th century underground tunnels, used as a cellar to age these excellent wines made exclusively with the Tempranillo grape variety. The vineyards around the winery and town, over 32 hectares, are also owned by the family. After your visit, you will taste 4 of the winery's top wines. 

We will arrive back in Madrid at 7:30pm and the evening is free and yours for exploring. 

Day 5. Saturday, October 5               
Cocido Madrileño Cooking Class, Farewell Evening & Flamenco!
Our final morning cooking class with Gabriela, we will make Cocido Madrileño:a rich, fragrant stew especially identified with Spain’s capital city: Madrid. The nationally celebrated meal dates back to at least the Middle Ages and makes thorough use of the bounty of the vast agricultural plateau that surrounds this city.

Gabriela says, “Every country has its own pot-au-feu, a big pot where you put everything in and let it boil. Cocido is Spain’s pot-au-feu.”

The dish is derived from adafina, the long-cooking dish of chickpeas, garlic, meats, and seasoned stock prepared by Spain’s Sephardic Jews. In addition, we will cook veal or fish in a salt crust. For dessert, Santiago Almond cake with fruit and sorbet

At the end of the cooking class, we will gather around the table and enjoy our last lunch together, delighting in your own hearty stews and wine to accompany. All food and drink included.

Day 6. Sunday, October 6                     
Meet your driver in front of your accommodation and depart by private transfer to Madrid airport. Transportation to the airport is included.


PRICING WITH ACCOMMODATIONS: $2,839 USD per person PLUS Superior or Premium Room (or choose your own accommodations):

  • Superior Plaza Mayor Room:$838 USD per person. Based on 2 guests sharing a twin/double room. Single Supplement: $826 USD.
  • Premium Plaza Mayor Room:$922 USD per person. Based on 2 guests sharing a double room. Single Supplement: $910 USD.
 Whether choosing your own accommoations or choosing the Pestana Plaza Mayor Hotel, accommodations are in addition to the $2,839 trip price. All tour activities commence each morning from the Pestana Plaza Mayor Hotel - this is the meeting place for all tour activities. For alternative hotel suggestions and information on Madrid please click here.

Superior Plaza Mayor Rooms: Rooms are 21sqm and can either be queen or twin-size bed, with a balcony facing the Plaza Mayor Square. Please note the bathroom is semi-private as shown in the diagram below, whereby the shower and toilet have their own door, and then the bathroom area is separated by a screen but itself does not have a door. Upgraded room prices available on request and subject to room availability.

Premium Plaza Mayor Rooms:Rooms are 23sqm with queen sized bed, and two small balconies overlooking the Plaza Mayor Square. Please note the bathroom is semi-private as shown in the diagram below, whereby the shower and toilet have their own door, and then the bathroom area is separated by a partial wall but itself does not have a door. Upgraded room prices available on request and subject to room availability.

Guests are welcome to book their own accommodations as all meeting points will be clearly provided in advance. You can find some further accommodation suggestions here or you can contact Carly directly on Carly@insiderstravel.io and she will be happy to discuss your requirements and provide suggestions. 


  • Return private airport transfer via Madrid Airport and centrally located accommodation
  • Three mornings of private cooking classes with Gabriela Llamas including refreshments and all good quality ingredients
  • Three private lunches with Gabriela Llamas including all food and drink
  • A private olive oil tasting lesson with expert
  • Market visit with Gabriela Llamas
  • Guided tour of the Prado Museum
  • Private evening welcome tapas walking tour including all food and drink
  • Full day excursion to Ribera del Duero with a wine expert, including mini-coach, two special winery visits and a traditional lunch (all food, drink and wine included)
  • Finale evening with Tapas dinner, Flamenco expert and best tickets to a traditional Flamenco show(all food and drink included)
  • Full Support from Insider’s Travel including personalised electronic itinerary booklets, sightseeing notes, restaurant bookings and an emergency contact number


  • International flights
  • Visas (as required)
  • Accommodations
  • Meals not specified as included
  • Tips
  • Any personal expenditure

How to Book
For booking, please contact Carly at Insider’s Travel directly on +44(0)7711071665 or by email carly@insiderstravel.io. Secure your spot by completing this booking formThe tour will be sold on a first come first serve basis. 


Payments are accepted by bank transfer.


Tour Numbers
Tours are subject to a minimum number of participants. While we endeavour to run all tours, if the tour cannot go ahead due to insufficient numbers, or due to other factors beyond our control, then your deposit will be refunded. Please see our booking form for our full terms and conditions. 


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