What is it that makes the paella in Madrid so great? "I don't know. It just is not done properly outside Spain. I think it's the saffron, the quality of the rice, and that fresh squeezed lemon over the top. Oh, my mouth is watering just thinking of it."
Any other restaurant recommendations? "Yeah, in the old section of Madrid there's a place called Casa Lucio. It's old-school Spanish food. There are checkered tablecloths, and they bring you tons of tapas before your dinner comes. There's also another place I like called El Landó. They have really nice Spanish food there, too. When you go in, there are pictures on the wall of all the famous people who have eaten there."
Like who? "I definitely saw Tom Cruise, some sports people, and a lot of others. Casa Lucio and El Landó are both sort of not-too-fancy restaurants. You are hard-pressed to find a restaurant in Madrid that is, like, super buttoned up. It's not like France, where every other place is a three-hour meal with waiters and tuxedos. You can find that in Spain, but it's not the norm."
What are some of your favorite tapas? "So many. My favorite is basically bread, and then they rub tomato on it to get all the juice, and then they put anchovies on. It is delicious. And the olives they bring, all the little fried seafood stuff they bring, I love."