While walking through the streets of Manhattan to get to Mercado Little Spain, which is nestled right under the High Line, you’re instantly teleported to España when you open the doors to enter. The music that is played throughout is customary, with an array of kiosks and restaurants of traditional and delicious food to devour that is scattered strategically around the building. The crowd exuberantly scours the market floor, either taking in the sights or looking for the next kiosk or restaurant to visit. The walls are covered in beautiful murals that represent Hispanic heritage and its rich culture.
Mercado Little Spain is a veritable love letter to Spain from chef José Andrés and his team, and is inspired by the various historic mercados of Andrés’ home country. While inside, you’ll find three different key restaurants: Leña, Mar and Spanish Diner, which offer visitors specific menu options based on their preference.
Leña brings together the best elements of Spain’s favorite grill-focused restaurants, including the asadores and steakhouses of the Basque country and Asturias. Nearly everything on the menu is cooked over embers with a focus on larger grilled cuts of meat. Some menu items that can be found at Leña include butifarra con mongetes (pork sausages served with white beans and alioli), codorniza a la brasa (two whole quails served with romesco sauce), chuletillas de cordero (New Zealand lamb chops), among others.
Mar represents the culture of Spain’s diverse regions with all things aquatic themed. The ever-rotating menu highlights seafood from Spain and the United States, featuring what is fresh and in season. On the menu, you’ll find gambas al ajillo (the very famous tapa of shrimp sautéed with garlic), anchoas de santoña (cured anchovies from Santoña served with toasted bread brushed with fresh tomato) and more.
Spanish Diner is an Iberian take on the classic American all-day restaurant, and features larger portions of Spanish favorites like gazpacho andaluz soup, callos con garbanzos (Madrid style tripe stew) and bacalao frito (fried salted Spanish cod).
Some of the kiosks that can be found include Bocatas & Empanadas, which offers a wide variety of Spain’s favorite sandwiches, Churros, which offers the delicious crispy fried pastry, Frutas & Verduras, which offers freshly made salads, soups, juices, smoothies and stews, Helados, which focuses on frozen treats like granizados (shaved ice), soft serve and corte helado, an ice cream sandwich constructed right before your eyes.
And if eating isn’t your thing, Mercado Little Spain also has two cocktail bars called Diner Bar and Bar Celona, and a wine bar called Vinos.
Mercado Little Spain is located at 10 Hudson Yards and is open daily. For more information, visit www.littlespain.com or call 646-495-1242.