Alma de Julián Becerro, Madrid

On Calle Cava Baja in Madrid, among all those wondering tapas joints, you’ll find Alma de Julián Becerro, a shop par excellence for some of the best jamón in all of Spain.

Alma de Julián Becerro, Madrid.

Alma de Julián Becerro, Madrid.

Inside there are many varieties of jamón to purchase in different price ranges.

Jamónes hanging on the wall at Alma de Julián Becerro, Madrid.

Jamónes hanging on the wall at Alma de Julián Becerro, Madrid.

There’s always a skilled and knowledgeable fellow there ready to give you information about the meats as well as to slice them for you, perhaps from this selection in the middle of the store:

Various jamónes available for slicing at Alma de Julián Becerro.

Various jamónes available for slicing at Alma de Julián Becerro.

Or, you might choose a pre-sliced pack from the case such as one of these:

Prepacked meats and wine at Alma de Julián Becerro, Madrid, Spain.

Prepacked meats and wine at Alma de Julián Becerro, Madrid, Spain.

Don’t forget to select a delicious bottle of wine. There are so many good foods to choose from in Spain that you’ll find yourself wanting to stay for a long, long time.

Iberico Sampler

If you have a hankering for cured meats Ibérico style, Madrid (and Spain in general) offers you plenty of options for complete satisfaction. I stopped into the Museo del Jamón in Madrid one  afternoon because, well, it’s hard to stay away from quality cured meats in a place where they take it to the highest levels. Not only the meats, but also the cheese and wine call out to you. Why resist? And here it is…

On the lower-center portion of the plate you’ll notice the jamón Ibérico thinly sliced with the fat around the edge. Around the upper part of the plate is the chorizo. In the center and to the left is another salami-style concoction, the name of which slips my mind just now. Then there is the manchego cheese wedged in. Of course, a hunk of bread comes in handy, as does the glass of sangria in the lower left corner of the frame. Delicious one and all.

A word about the Museo del Jamón in Madrid. It can be a crowded, boisterous place. That said, it also offers some top-notch delicacies which can be had quickly and fairly reasonably. Don’t be put off by the three-deep crowds at the counter. Work your way in, order, and enjoy!

Published in: on May 22, 2010 at 1:49 pm  Comments (3)  
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Serious Jamón

If you’re serious about your jamón, especially the ibérico, then you’ll have to make a pilgrimage to Spain and visit one of the many shops that specialize in this delicious delicacy. During my recent trip, I found myself wandering about the streets of Madrid, eventually to Cava Baja, where there are a number of fine tapas joints. Lo and behold! There stands Alma de Ibérico at number 41 Cava Baja, the shop you see in the photo below:

While I stood by with my mouth watering, I watched a master carve off the thinest slices for a nice lady. These slices are so thin, they melt in your mouth, releasing all the flavor of a well-cured meat. Now, just in case you want to purchase your jamón intact and do the carving yourself, check out the selection below with yours truly grinning at the possibilities:

Take your pick! It is tempting but not inexpensive. Then again, the good things in life are never cheap. At any rate, if you find yourself in Madrid, on Cava Baja, make a stop here. You won’t be disappointed.

Published in: on May 4, 2010 at 4:22 am  Leave a Comment  
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