As I mentioned in my latest newsletter (sign up! It’s free!), there’s a few exciting things coming up for me – here’s one of them! I’m featured twice in the UK magazine, Stylist, out today in print and online. It’s their big Milan issue (is the cover gorgeous, or what?), and I was happy to give some input into the Food Lover’s Milan for their The Stylist Guide to Milan. I’m also quoted in their article about Berlusconi and the rise of women in Italy.
There’s also a Culture Lover and Fashion Lover’s take on the city in addition my Food Lover’s guide, so it’s a cool little guide with some helpful ideas for a visit to Milan. Here’s the archived version of the magazine – issue 159 (my article is on page 75) or here’s a direct link to the magazine viewer.
I had to make some tough choices about what to include in my food lover’s guide, but I tried to concentrate my choices toward the centro, or downtown of Milan as that’s where most tourists spend their days in museums and shopping. That of course ruled out a lot of great options for lunches and dinners, but I’m more than happy to take suggestions in the comments about what your perfect food lover’s day in Milan would be like.
A few clarifications on the content in the article, which I did not see in its final version. That’s the great thing about having my own website – I can give you information unfiltered by journalists :)
- Aperitivo: 5pm is not the ideal time for aperitivo, as you’ll see from my Guide to Italian Aperitivo here on this site. 7-9pm is best if you’re interested in catching a buffet or abundance of food, but you should be able to get just a drink at 5pm in most places and maybe some potato chips and olives.
- Brunch is not served every day in Italy, but rather on Sundays, if at all. I don’t really recommend brunch as a must-do if you’re in the city only for a few days – it’s been imported into the country and has a ways to go still, but if brunch is your thing, it’s starting to show up in Italy, too.
- Coffee – the place I recommended in the Galleria Vittorio Emanuele but didn’t get into the article is Camparino / Zucca in Galleria.
- Lambrusco – I recommended this as something to drink at the Emilia-Romagna region restaurant, Salsamenteria di Parma, not necessarily as a typical Milanese wine. Lambrusco can be made in Lombardy but is more attributed to Emilia-Romagna. If you want a great wine from Lombardy, drink Franciacorta!
- Cassoeula – I doubt pretty heavily that Trussardi alla Scala ever serves this dish, and it was something I named as a typical Milanese dish (below) not specific to that restaurant.
Below are a few answers which didn’t make it into the magazine, but you may find interesting:
- Alternative to Peck: There’s also Eat’s Store inside Excelsior (Galleria del Corso, 4), a recent addition to the gourmet food stores which has a similar setup to Peck but with a comparable selection of pasta and gifts to take home.
What is the best type of food produced in Milan?
The Milanese cuisine is rich and hearty, and the fall and winter are the best seasons to appreciate eating in Milan. Try the traditional risotto alla milanese, a savory saffron risotto, polenta con funghi porcini, polenta with porcini mushrooms, or any number of filled pasta, especially when they are filled with zucca, pumpkin, and served with a sauce of salvia e burro, sage and butter. If you’re a meat lover you will want to try ossobuco, cross-cut veal shanks braised with wine and vegetables, or if you’re adventurous look for the cassoeula, a cabbage and pork meat stew which often includes pig ears.
Do you have a favourite coffee shop in Milan?
There are so many – that’s the great thing about Italy is that great coffee is usually just a few steps away. Il Camparino (aka Zucca in Galleria) in Galleria Vittorio Emanuele is right in the center but often still filled with Milanese. Get a quick espresso at the bar with the locals or grab a table to sit and people watch. To get coffee from a bar who roasts their own beans, look for “Torrefazione” as part of the bar’s name. You can find out more about ordering coffee in Milan like a local with my book, How to Order an Italian Coffee in Italy.
What would be in your Food Lover’s Guide to Milan? Let me know in the comments below.