Tuesday 13 May 2014

Street-Xo, Madrid.

Street-Xo was pretty much number one on my food list on our trip to Madrid. We'd already managed to secure a booking at chef David Muñoz's three Michelin star restaurant DiverXo later that evening. This is his street food operation on the ninth floor of The El Corte Inglés department store (the Callao branch, there are quite a few). Under the impression that it opened at 10am with the store itself, we turned up early for brunch. They told us to come back when it opened at 1.15. Knowing the Spanish never turn up early for anything, we arrived at 1 and were the first there. Easy peasy. There are only several precious seats so just follow the clockwork nature of the Spanish and you'll have no problem! (They of course all turned up at 2pm en-masse). 
You sit on stools around the very small kitchen area and watch the manic theatre of it all unfold. There is proper house music playing which just so works in this environment. Then there's the food, oh my the food! I had a big list of recommendations from pals on twitter, we settled on six dishes. Everything we ate was nothing short of stunning. I mean everything, and it takes quite a bit to bowl us over these days. This stuff is on a different level! We had; Smoked Razor Clams with charcoal and olive oil. Ponzu of sishio and coconut cream. (€6). 
Sandwich club steamed version. Ricotta. Fried quail egg. Sichimi togarashi. (€8).
Pekines Dumpling. Pig confit ear and strawberry hoisin. Ali-oli. (€10.50).
Pork Belly with pickled mussels saam. Shitakes, siracha sauce and XO tartare sauce (€14).
Flamboyant super cool head chef Jhonny, (pictured below) also sent us out a free dish as he knew we are food bloggers. Almost a Calamari Roll. (€14).
Chilli Crab "Pimenton de la Vera", chipotles and steamed chinese bun (€12).
Usually with these things, one or two dishes stand out, but we loved absolutely all of this food. If you twist my arm though, I'd choose the  Pekines Dumpling. Pig confit ear. 
We enjoyed it so much that we returned the next day at the same time and got exactly the same seats. As last time, I washed it all down with some Alhambra beer, one of the best of the Spanish lagers I think. Apparently all the local foodies turn up on Sunday and Monday as on these days chef David Muñoz often puts a shift in at the kitchen (as he did on this occasion).
Baked in coals Mackerel - yuzu - miso. Smoked bonito and pickled onion rings. Trout roe. (€12).
Old Beef Meatball. Indonesian Peanuts stew. Marinated frogs legs Acid coconut. (€14).
 Pekines Dumpling. Pig confit ear. Mrs B insisted we have this again, I'm so glad we did, it's simply amazing.
Grilled Bone Marrow & Cocotxa. (Cocotxa or Kokotxa is cod or hake throat). One of the best things I've ever eaten. End of. 
Hot & Sour Ramen Black Pig. Egg Yolk and sweet paprika. (€13). Another big favourite.
Glazed Squid with sambac olek. Creamy grain of wheat with sheep milk. (€13). 
Prawns+Prawns+Prawns+Prawns+Prawns=Prawns. (€9.50). 
We had nearly the whole menu on two trips. I still think about some of those dishes a week later too.
I've been to quite a few Michelin star restaurants in my time and the food here although Asian fusion 'street food' in style, is equal to and better than many. It's all in the taste intensity and strength of flavour that all this food really delivers. Chef David Muñoz' isn't too bothered I don't think with authenticity, it's all about those big bold flavours, and he just knocks it out of the park every single time. The great news for those living in the UK is that Street-Xo is coming to London this summer.
I tweeted that if it's anything like this one, it will be massive.
David Muñoz replied; "ehhh! Will be much better!" We plan to go to London especially for it, so we may see you there.
To see the photos in hi res click here.


  1. Nice review, it looks amazing! We will be going this weekend, is it correct that there are two branches now? (one on calle serranno, too?) Which one do you recommend? Thank you!

    1. I'm sorry I don't know for sure Nanna. I know they moved after our visit so in that case I'd go to the newer Calle Serrano, presuming they shut the Corte el Ingles branch.

  2. Months late but for the benefit of your readers, the Callao Branch is no more. Go to El Corte Ingles Serrano Branch.