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“Overrated” 3 of 5 bubbles
Review of La Bola

La Bola
Ranked #616 of 10,438 Restaurants in Madrid
Price range: US$34 - US$55
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Child-friendly, Local cuisine, Special Occasion Dining
Dining options: Dinner, After-hours, Lunch, Highchairs Available, Reservations, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Waitstaff
Neighbourhood: Centro
Duxbury, Vermont
Level Contributor
76 reviews
42 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 67 helpful votes
“Overrated”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 June 2014

This place is famous for their cosido - a typical Spanish beef stew. We were disappointed. The cosido was very soupy and pricey. The service was abrupt. The rooms are packed with tourist groups. Tables are set inches apart. The food was overpriced. There are better places to enjoy a good meal in Madrid. Don't get trapped by the tour books.

  • Visited May 2014
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank puchochot1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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1,611 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Traditional) first
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • Danish first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Korean first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Thai first
  • Any
English first
Ludwigsburg, Germany
Level Contributor
46 reviews
44 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
“Good food at a reasonable price”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 22 May 2014

I was in Madrid for a weekend trip and wanted to try the famous Cocido. Therefore I went to "La Bola", received a nice table and the waiters were also very nice.
The Cocido was quite good. I've never had this before, so I can't compare but I know what is possible with these ingredients and what they made our of it was fine.
The noodle soup was very tasty and especially the mild onions and wonderful peppers have to be mentioned. Afterwords you get chickpeas with a piece of chicken, veal, pork and sausage. All the meat was tender and tasteful. Especially the sausage was wonderful.
The cocido is really a lot, but if you haven't had too much breakfast (and have lunch at a typical time there) you can manage.
Nevertheless I hadn't that much space left to eat a dessert and only asked for the white stuff which I had seen being served to other guests. It was a lemon sorbet with Cava which was wonderful and a very good finish after the heavy Cocido. And it didn't appear on the bill.

  • Visited May 2014
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank CamTe
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Perth, Australia
Level Contributor
122 reviews
37 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 76 helpful votes
“Basic food, not worth the money”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 5 May 2014

Attractive restaurant and excellent service. So far so good. Sadly, the food let it down a lot. We went at lunchtime and couldn't manage anything as large as the cochino or leg of lamb. I had the shredded beef with tomatoes, pimentoes and fried chick peas, which was tasty enough but nothing special, shredded beef in a tomato-y sauce with a few crunchy fried chick peas on top. DH had the swordfish a la plancha which was a dud. A large but thin swordfish steak had been slightly over-cooked, then oil and parsley drizzled over it. It was served with some chopped lettuce, sliced tomato and grated carrot on the side. IMHO not worth over 17 euros - I've had better cooked fish served in pubs. Perhaps the cochina is worth 20 euros (it's certainly big!) but otherwise I would go elsewhere.

  • Visited May 2014
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank setenaj
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Brisbane
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“Not as good as listed”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 May 2014 via mobile

Went for lunch, and the food very disappointing. We had the set lunch. The soup was just okay. The main was shredded meat and chickpeas which I could not eat much of, and the Apple poster with ice cream was again just ok. Tourists go to experience the typical food but I found the good nowhere as good as the tapas across the road for half the price.

  • Visited May 2014
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank Tubbybear
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Staten Island, New York
Level Contributor
161 reviews
114 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 74 helpful votes
“Cocido castellano, how its used to be”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 26 April 2014

Fine dining restaurant with best cocido castellano in Madrid. Some people say that it was invented here and even the Spanish king occasionally coming for a lunch to La Bola. Awesome décor and spectacular service. Great presentation of the cocido dish starting from bringing charcoal cooked pot and adding soup, cabbage and other different components forming the unforgetable feast. Even if La Bola well known for its cocido but the other options on a menu are very tasty and reliable. Expensive but what do you expect from such a fantastic restaurant. Cocido castellano so complex dish that you can not eat for the whole day;)

  • Visited April 2014
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank YuryGr
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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