Jesus Fernandez stands behind his pop-up drink shop in the middle of Paseo de los Melancolis. The operation has all the markings of a kid’s lemonade stand—cash box, plastic cups and a fold-out table flanked by a skateboard. But this table isn’t so innocent. Stocked with Mahou, Passport scotch, Beefeater gin and vodka, the table is a mobile liquor cabinet for passing Atlético fans making their way to the stadium.
Fernandez and his associates are too busy for an interview as they attempt to meet the demands of a thirsty crowd happily paying 2 euros for a 12-ounce Mahou, or 8 euros for big-gulp sized mixed drink of alcohol paired with Coke or Naranja.
Just 20 feet away, another franchise is bustling on the other side of the street, catching the fans that might not have seen the first stand. At both locations, the entrepreneurs are frantically opening ice bags.
By 8:35 p.m., the crew is cleaning up – their bottles almost empty and their customers filing into the stadium and nearby bars to catch the beginning of the match.