The Milanese restaurant for excellence, a bit far away from the city center but still easily reachable. There was a time when it was called Osteria Ortica and it took its name from the area in which it used to be, a working-class neighborhood made famous by Enzo Jannacci’s songs, one of the most acclaimed Milanese songwriter of all times.
The owner is an old man, with a long white beard and a past as an Alpine. He has been here for over 40 years and the menu has remained the same: polenta with braised beef, polenta with cheese, cotoletta, shinbone and much more… everything is cooked following the dear, old Milanese recipes. He is known everywhere in Milan as Il Tiglin and he can seem a bit moody but, under the mustache he hides a kind smile. When we entered the restaurant, he was walking around with a glass of wine in his hands and it was Carlo, his son, who welcomed us. He and his father wander around the big spaces of the Osteria talking with the clients in dialect, translating for those who don’t understand and making jokes. There are two guitars, appositely put there if someone feels like playing and singing. If you go there, stay until closing time: often, Il Tiglin and his friends take the guitars and start singing. At midnight, moreover, Carlo brings to the central table a big pot with some spaghetti in it and anyone who’s still hungry can eat them for free.
L’Osteria del Gatto Nero is an amazing place that treasures a memory of a pure, genuine and working-class Milan.
Via Decemviri, 14, 20136 Milano, Italia
Lun-sab: 12.30-14.30 19.30-23.30. Chiuso lunedì a pranzo.