Bienvenidos, welcome to Café Central Madrid!
In over 30 years of activity, the venue has presented more than 10,000 concerts to excited crowds of locals and tourists. Because of its hard-work and the incredible atmosphere in which he presents high-quality jazz shows, WIRE hailed Café Central as one of Europe’s top jazz clubs and DownBeat magazine ranked it among the world’s best jazz venues.
There are only few places in Spain that offer opportunity of performance to European and American jazz artists. Café Central Madrid is without doubt among the top options for musicians. This informal art-deco cafe near Plaza del Angel will celebrate its 32th anniversary on 12 August. For over three decades, it has been one of the country very most popular stages for jazz musicians touring Spain.
Following the footsteps of legendary jazz clubs like the Village Vanguard, Café Central welcomes new performers for exciting week-long shows. Just like it regularly happens in New York City.
Hot Live Jazz in the Heart of Madrid
Not many jazz clubs can brag about having hosted more than 10,000 concerts…but this is exactly what Café Central could do. For over 30 years, it has presented some of the best shows that have taken place in Madrid. It has been the stage for stars of the past like George Adams, Art Farmer and Jeanne Lee, and the present. Randy Weston, Concha Buika and Bob Rockwell are some of the prominent jazz names that have stopped by Café Central in recent years.
Whenever there has been an established jazz performer in Madrid, he or she has had at least one show scheduled at Café Central.
If you are wondering why, it’s easy to explain.
First of all, the location. The venue is situated near Plaza del Angel, one of the most popular parts of the city. And it’s full of history.
Secondly, the interiors. Café Central is a sort of mix of a French bistro and a New York-styled jazz club. All this contributes to create a cozy environment for both musicians and the audience, who can see their favourite stars from up close.
From the artists’ perspective, the cafe offers a nice art-deco design and top-notch audio equipment that assures excellent acoustics for every single show.
The result is an incredible, joyful atmosphere in which performers can showcase their talent at its best and the crowd has a great view of what is happening on stage and can enjoy the evening with top-class live music.
Back in 1991, the UK version of WIRE listed Café Central as Europe’s eighth best jazz club. It’s indeed true that, throughout the years, the venue has served as prestigious stage for several European jazz acts touring Spain. Groups like the Paolo Fresu Quintet, Palle Danielsson & Ulf Wakenius and the French Latcho Drom are some of the prominent members of the continental jazz scene who have performed at Café Central.
Since 2002, the café has been featured in DownBeat list of the world’s best clubs. Café Central Madrid has been the only Spanish venue, that has consistently been part of the list and has proudly represented the country in the international jazz scene. It’s not that surprising that the club has been the #1 choice for many American jazzmen and women touring Europe. Grammy award winner Paquito D’Rivera, for instance, decided to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the cafe with a special show.
Great Jazz, Great Food
In addition to being a terrific live music venue, Café Central is also one of Madrid most visited restaurants. The popular “menú del mediodía” – lunch menu served from 1:30 pm to 4:15 pm during the week and from 1 pm to 4:30 pm during weekends – features options for meat and fish lovers, as well as vegetarians. A wide selection of entrées, salads, pastas and desserts completes the menu served by the restaurant during the evening.
Stop by Café Central and enjoy a good lunch at one of the comfortable tables. In alternative, sit by the restaurant’s terrace and eat your food while listening to the sounds of the city and doing some people watching. If you are a local, you might want to have an after-work drink immersed in the incredible atmosphere that only Café Central Madrid can offer. Beware: the ambient at Café Central is so good and captive, that you will almost certainly stay also for dinner, for the live performance and for a drink after the show too!
Café Central Madrid is not only one of the best jazz clubs in the whole world…it’s also one of the welcoming, multicultural and friendly places one could ever visit!
Plaza de Ángel 10, Madrid