Bite of the Real King Cake in Madrid

Happy belated birthday to Spain’s King Juan Carlos, who turned 70 this past Saturday. I was on hand to see the tradition: hundreds of people lining up for a bite of free birthday cake at Puerta dol Sol this weekend. Actually, that’s not true. They were lining up to celebrate Three Kings day and get a piece of the Roscón de Reyes.

I’d told you a few days ago about the lottery lines here in Madrid, but even they can’t compete with the free cake lines that I saw. The cake was enormous. Most families still celebrate “Kings Day” with the traditional Roscón de Reyes. The cake is eaten with hot chocolate on the night of epiphany when the Wise men come and leave gifts for children. Three Kings are better than one, I guess. Poor Juan Carlos is left behind…

By the way, Hotel Europa (pictured here) is highly recommended. For some 85 euro for two, it is a great deal considering its central location.