Milan is the most visited city in Italy and in the top ten of Europe. Its charm? Live like a Milanese. Here's where and how, including breakfasts from Instagram, cocktails with a view (passing through the best chops), and the latest 2019
Milan is not a city at first sight, overwhelming. It is a city that you fall in love with slowly, as you explore it below the surface of things. but yet Milan is the most visited Italian city and is the only one in the Top 20 of the most visited in the world (precisely in sixteenth place) of the Mastercard Global Destination Cities Index. In the first ten European cities, in addition to the Lombard capital, there are only Rome and Venice, but in Milan one does not come only for history, art, beauty: one comes to live "as a Milanese".
Economic capital of Italy, of fashion and design, Milan is now also the country's capital of catering. The widest concentration of Michelin stars, up-and-coming chefs, trendy and international-style locals rise up in the shadow of the Madonnina. The new openings follow each other, without stopping, and going out for breakfast at lunchtime for a business lunch is the real lifestyle in the city. Needless to look for the "traditional" cuisine, however, the Old Milan survives only in architecture, and even the risotto with ossobuco serves you young bearded hipster. "Autentico" in Milan means rooftop with a view, brioche to post on Instagram, cocktails and trattorias run by adopted Milanese. We eat well, much better than the times when they cooked grandmothers.
Here is what to do to feel like a Milanese Doc, between unmissable places and new openings.
Breakfast at the bakery
Breakfast is the most important meal of the day, even on Instagram. Breakfast in Milan is instagrammabile, handcrafted and strictly done outside the home. There are glories of the past like Marchesi in corso Magenta, Cucchi Pastry, Cova Montenapoleone or Gattullo, where you can breathe the charm of Old Milan. The Pavè pastry shop was born a few years ago and is still one of the most loved, awarded and unquestionably good in the city. A few steps away is a new entry, Gelsomina, beloved by bloggers for her husband (who is Roman, but is now in fashion even in Milan).
Natural wines and urban wines
For aperitif or after dinner, drink natural, macerated, orange or refermented in the bottle. From Enoteca Naturale and Vinor a step away from the Navigli, from Champagne Socialist in the Porta Venezia area. In the Porta Romana area there is wine, and in a glass there is also something to eat from Mater Bistrot. Do you want to try a wine made in Milan, made right in the city? There is Cantina Urbana, which presses, bottles and serves Doc wines from Milan.
Pizza and cocktails
You can't eat pizza in Milan! Dry in via Solferino years ago launched the fashion and since then the cocktails have entered fully into the menus of pizzerias. Dry is always a guarantee, but from Giolina, a new opening, you can eat an excellent pizza from the super cornice, drink the drinks signed by MAG Cafè, and natural wines.
The old trattorias of typical specialties in Milan are disappointing. Better to choose the new generation offering quality, excellent products and professional cooks. For years the Ratanà has remained one of the valid addresses where to find mondeghili, nervetti and risotto with ossobuco. To sit at the Trattoria Trippa table, which has become an international phenomenon, you need to book in advance, weeks. But to taste something of them, there is the new Fratelli Torcinelli spin-off: fast food dedicated to bomblets and typical Apulian dishes.
Chinese bao and ravioli
The Chinese community in Milan is one of the oldest in Europe and the Milanese chinatown boasts a number of excellent new generation Chinese restaurants. Along via Paolo Sarpi you can stop for ravioli on the go at the Ravioleria Sarpi, in the northern district of Nolo there is the convivial restaurant Le Nove Scodelle or you can go where the Chinese go when they want to eat Chinese well: Mu Dim Sum, Central Station area.
The cutlet in Milan is a myth in part to be debunked, because it is not so easy to eat it good: high with bone and cooked in clarified butter. The best ones in the center can be found at the Daniel Restaurant in Brera or at the Osteria del Brunello in Corso Garibaldi. To spend little, Da Martino in via Farini, a pizzeria with the cut that made the cutlet its strong point. Far from the center, the cutlets of the Antica Trattoria Il Ronchettino or the Trattoria del Nuovo Macello are highly recommended.
Starred experience at a reasonable price? From Cracco in Galleria you can eat a pizza (the one that outraged the social networks) or other classic dishes, cooked by the judge of MasterChef. There is the bistro of the Mandarin Oriental Hotel in Milan, curated by the 2 Michelin stars Antonio Guida. Giancarlo Perbellini, 2 Michelin stars in Verona, also arrived in Milan, with his Locanda offering excellent value for money, award-winning and rightly so.
No doubt, the Ceresio 7 is the most beautiful rooftop bar in Milan. Restaurant and pool bar on the terrace of the historic building of Enel and home of the Dsquared2 group. At the stove, chef Elio Sironi and his contemporary Mediterranean cuisine, at the bar the barman Guglielmo Miriello. News, the small terrace of Clotilde, Brera area, where you can sip cocktails of the world-famous Filippo Sisti and eat the dishes of chef Domenico De La Salandra.
Aperitif on the canals
A must, but the happy hour with tons of buffet pizzas and cheap cocktails is certainly not out of fashion. Here, fortunately, they are also concentrated among the best cocktail bars in Milan: MAG, Rita and Pinch. The Rita's Tiki Room is new, with tiki cocktails and pan-Asian inspired dishes.
The 2019 novelty
Moebius by chef Enrico Croatti is a new, huge 700 square meter tapas bar between Central Station and Republic, spectacular and beautiful. In 2019 also Cracco and Camilla in Duomo was inaugurated, in the spaces of the former Cracco restaurant, with the cocktail format and small kitchen that makes people smile with menus like the Milanese Imbruttito, Influencer and Mammone.