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Gula Gula is now a well established restaurant centrally located in Madrid, right on Gran Via.
It serves fairly ordinary food - basically Spanish with a pan-european slant. Nothing is outrageously over-priced, but nothing is cheap either. Expect to pay 30 euros a head. For dinner they always have a cold anti-pasti type salad buffet, which can be quite nice. They have an a la carte but it is common to go for the set menu, which is twenty five euros for a cold salad bar starter and a main course. Just the salad bar or a main is 20 Euros. They do things like gnocci, lasagne, veal with red pepper rice, honey roast turkey. Quite bland really compared to more traditional Spanish food, which I prefer but I guess this kind of food is trendy - it's like going to ASK or Franky and Benny's - you get reliably OK food, but not more. The puddings are a bit different to the average Spanish restaurant though, - they do things like cheesecake and tiramisu, fruit pave and apple crumble, all for 4.40 Euros each.
A bottle of wine (depending what you choose of course), is about 13 Euros. Most soft drinks like coke were 2.5 Euros each.
But the reason you go to this restaurant is definitely for the experience, not the food.
Its USP is the transvestite waiters. They have loads of them, and everyone is all dressed up and it's all a bit like a night club before you go to one - if you see what I mean. The place is always packed -you need to book for dinner - and the waiters are always busy, but they do a lot of chatting and joking with the customers. They have a DJ playing stuff and its really loud most of the time. If you were a timid soul I guess it could be a bit intimidating, but if you're game for a laugh then it's definitely worth experiencing.
They have a cabaret, perhaps just at weekends, which is drag queen humour and songs - a bit rude and raunchy, but not more than saucy. It's obviously all in Spanish though, and the humour is integral, so not worth going if you don't speak the language, in my opinion. But it is not unsuitable for all ages - well perhaps not children, but your mum would cope I think. My Dad does anyway. I've rated it poor for family friendliness overall, although I'm sure you could take young children and the staff would be nice to you, you might not want to explain to your 5 year old why the lady waitress has such a funny bulge down there!!
So if you speak Spanish and are a bit bored with the whole experience of patatas bravas and jamon serrano then give it a go - it is certainly a unique experience in Madrid. If you find Pizza Hut a bit noisy, then don't bother, but if you liked Madame JoJos in Soho - you'll like this.
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