Visiting yet another important Madrid market, sprawled on a lot within the barrio of La Latina, is Mercado de Cebada. I went on a Wednesday, the middle of the week, and based on what I saw — what with the numerous kiosks in every corner of the mercado, although perhaps only a third is open to sell all sorts of food and non-food wares, and the rest is closed — it must be one of the biggest markets in the whole of the Madrid Centro District.
While its imposing facade is sure to catch one’s attention, you can tell from the inside that the market is antiquated. Its interior is behind compared to that of the other modern markets like San Ildefonso and San Miguel. Still, the people behind Cebada can say that it is a no-frills market, one devoid of the unwanted decorative clutters, and offers the necessities of the homemakers first and formost. Like any other market in Madrid, morning is the hustle-and-bustle part of the day, where a common sight everywhere are lively interchanges between stall owners and their clients.
Upon entering, you are greeted by staircases that lead to two floors, both of which are filled with food stores selling meats (carniceria), fruits and vegetables (fruteria), fish (pescaderia), poultry — everything you might need to stock up your kitchen. Non-food wares are also sold here, such as cosmetics, optic wear, furniture, flowers.
It is no wonder that the market is brimming with locals and even from those outside the barrio to do their weekly purchases. Come Friday, and onto the weekend, Cebada transforms itself into a huge roofed, gathering place for friends who want to have a few hours of good time chatting, while at the same time drinking beer on one of those Latino bars, or eat some cheese or Spanish tapa from a local food shop.
Direccion: Plaza de la Cebada 17, Distrito Centro La Latina
How to go:
Via Metro — It is easy to reach Mercado de Cebada, since it is situated right within the City Centro. You have to take Madrid Metro Line 5, and get off at La Latina Metro Station, which is directly in front of the market.
Via Autobus — Buses that pass through are 17, 18, 35, 23, and M1.
Horarios (Business hours):
Cebada Market is open Monday-Friday, 9AM to 2PM, 5PM to 8:30PM. On Saturdays, it is open starting 9AM and closes shop at around 3PM