Five Great Meals in Milan
Host of the 2015 World’s Fair, Milan is expected to draw a staggering 20 million visitors this summer. The 1 million square meter exhibition area features architecturally stunning pavilions built by participating countries, all exploring the overarching theme of Feeding the Planet, Energy for Life. Learn about the latest technological advances that are changing sustainability across the globe, and while you’re at it, sample global fare ranging from American-style Tex-Mex to classic Italian antipasti. Tickets start at about $45 (€39) for a day pass and the Expo will be open every day until October 31, 2015. (Logo courtesy the Expo Milano’s website)
Whether you’re an exhibitor, Expo visitor or simply vacationing in Milan, here are five restaurants to try.
A few years ago, this old warehouse transformed into a garden, artist workspace and Italian bistro thanks to the vision of agronomist and landscape architect, Emanuele Bortolotti. The place is gorgeous, decorated with clean linens, tons of natural light and eclectic white country furniture. With beautiful flowering trees, the garden patio is an outdoor sanctuary, perfect for enjoying a summer supper or a slice of homemade cake. The food is fresh, authentic and changes based on what’s in season. Be sure to make a reservation if heading here for dinner and request the outdoor patio–it’s well worth the extra effort. (Photo courtesy Al Fresco’s Facebook)
Al Fresco / Via Savona, 50, Milan / +39 02 4953 3630 / alfrescomilano.it
This spot was my favorite find in Milan. The simple décor compliments the floor-to-ceiling glass windows framing the Arco della Pace. You can go for aperitivo (hands down the best I had in Italy!), a coffee or pastry, gelato, lunch, and even brunch. The €10 buffet featured an exquisite selection ranging from hot chickpea soup and focaccia, to velvety beef bourguignon and the best arancini I had in Italy. Plan on arriving around 7 pm in order to beat the crowd. They bring out different dishes in waves, so the longer you stick around, the more options you’ll have. As difficult as it might be, don’t forget to leave room for dessert! (Photo courtesy Duomo’s Facebook)
Duomo dal 1952 / Corso Sempione 5, Milan / +39 02 4801 7224 / duomodal1952.com
If you’re hankering for delicious, authentic Italian food with a side of kitschy décor-think fake ivy plants stapled to the walls, classic red-and-white checkered tablecloths and an antique wine bottle collection-this is the place for you. Since 1965, this restaurant has been bustling with locals, who come for the tender house-made pastas immersed in rich sauces and classic, rustic dishes from the Abruzzo region. At Da Giannino, everyone starts with a huge basket of freshly grilled bread doused in extra virgin olive oil. For the best gnocchi of your life, order the gnocchi ai quattro formaggi (gnocchi with four cheeses). Another can’t-miss pasta dish is the schiaffoni della cuoca which oddly translates to ‘slaps the cook’ but is really jumbo ricotta-stuffed ravioli served with tangy and savory tomato cream sauce. (Photo courtesy Da Giannino’s website)
Da Giannino L’Angolo D’Abruzzo / Via Rosolino Pilo 20, Milan / +39 02 2940 6526/ dagianninolangolodabruzzo.it
For budget-friendly dim sum in a modern atmosphere, Dou is the place to go. For around €9 you can enjoy a ‘business lunch’ of your choice featuring soup, salad, an eggroll, and three different types of freshly steamed dumplings. My favorite was the chicken curry dumpling, a savory Indian-inspired chicken curry filling wrapped in freshly made dough and steamed. (Photo courtesy Dou’s Facebook)
Dou Asian Passion / Piazza Napoli 25, Milan / +39 02 4963 6318 / douasianpassion.com
With lines down the street of Instagram-ing tourists, Luini is a beloved establishment for an on-the-go lunch right next to the Duomo Di Milano. Its convenient location makes it an easy stop for anyone and everyone in the area, but the line moves fast, so don’t give up. Their namesake panzerottis are like an Italian empanada: deep fried pockets of dough stuffed with fresh mozzarella and vibrant tomato sauce. They are greasy, but delicious.
Panzerotti Luini / Via Santa Radegonda, 16, Milan / +39 02 8646 1917 / luini.it
About Devan Grimsrud
Growing up in the Land of 10,000 Lakes, Devan Grimsrud was born into a world where ketchup is considered by many to be a bit too spicy. Although this fostered a level of pickiness within her, she loves food and everything surrounding it. Her blog, Picky // Foodie, chronicles her quest for an adventurous palate, at home and abroad (check it out on Twitter, Instagram, & Facebook). She currently lives in Minneapolis and enjoys rock climbing, globetrotting, taking long walks in the woods and reading very late at night.