Saffron risotto, polenta with mushrooms and the evergreen “cassoeula”: this is the Milanese culinary saint Trinity. If you think that eating different, alternative in the city of the Dome is a mission impossible, you are wrong. Milan is a forge of tradition and innovation. This city is like a cake, made of several delicious layers, all different. Milan does not disappoint anybody, from the most traditional taste up to the most curious. Typical restaurants, trattorie – the ideal places for those who love wating
traditional food in a traditional and conventional way -, Chinese, Japanese and Indian restaurants, what is left? Here you are a short article with some tips about where to eat in Milan: in this text you will find some of the most interesting places in Milan, which combine curious atmospheres with unusual food – just to try something different!
Kitchen and soul – cooking + recycling
In the last few years, vegan and vegetarian food has become a real mania: legume balls, slices of “fake” meat (like seitan or legume “meatloaf”) and vegetables cooked in all the possible way have replaced the dear, old dishes like stew, meatballs and steaks. Pureed soups are the new food: potatoes, pumpkins, zucchini and more, it does not matter. What does matter is that they all have to be made of vegetables. But what happens to those who love eating meat and fish? When you think of eating vegan or vegetarian food, the first thing that comes to your mind is “eow”. It is universally acknowledged that “vegetable soup” or “broccoli” are synonyms for “diet” and “hospital”. However, we are convinced that Kitchen and Soul will get you change your mind. Place in the heart of the Navigli district, this place will gain a special place in your heart… and in your stomach! They are professionals in managing to turn some simple ingredients like vegetables and legumes in little culinary masterpieces. Everything is made according to their ethic: high quality raw materials and all of them bio. Healthy and tasty food, which follows the rule of the home-made philosophy. Have a look at their daily menu and you will immediately get hungry: from the roasted guinea-hen with apples (yes, in this place even the meat lovers will be satisfied) to the potato pie. You will only have to choose! Moreover, the furniture of this place will help you even more chill out and enjoy your meal: chairs, tables and other pieces of furniture are made of recycled materials – wood, above all – which will give you the impression of being in a place run by a group of friends you have known since always. Kitchen and soul also offer you bread and service: the principles of sharing are free!
Vinile Milano – for the American style aficionados
Porta Venezia, a day of sunshine, some shopping after a whole week of work and a growling stomach. The result of this equation cannot be but having lunch in such a place like the Vinile. We have find this magic place thanks to our desire of “getting lost” around the city, of walking following our instinct and especially our hunger of beauty. So, the Vinile is the best reward for such an unusual “hunt” like this. Enter the Vinile and you will find yourself surrounded by the unique, magic atmosphere of the Sixties American diners: pastel colors, smooth-shaped pieces of furniture and a collection of vinyls. Every single detail of this place will take you back to the magic years of Grease and of Saturday Night Fever. Here, the vinyls and psychedelic music aficionados will find their ideal place. Here, they can also find Sixties events and happenings theme as well as a complete Sixties style menu. Who knows, you may even imagine yourself as Janis Joplin or one of the Jefferson Airplane on the stage of Woodstock… but be careful: in this place you are not so welcome if you come in naked like in the well-known festival o 1969!
Fabbrica –the “industrial” restaurant in the heart of the Navigli district
Let us leave the metropolitan, elegant atmosphere of Porta Venezia and let us get close to the Navigli district. Let us take the tram, which is the one of the most romantic means of transporto par excellence and let us get down to the area characterized by the water channels system designed by Leonardo. We are now in one of the most romantic zones of Milan. If you love the atmospheres à-la Kraftwerk and a little bit industrial, the restaurant/pizzeria Fabbrica is the right place where having lunch or dinner. Its name is a real tell-tale name – you will immediately understand what is the style, which characterizes this place. Yes, you get it: in its “past life”, this place was a real factory (in Italian ‘fabbrica’, indeed), then abandoned. The minimal style of this place has been kept in order to give an idea about what was the main activity of this factory – that is to say wood. Get in here and you will find some big, wooden tables and wide windows. Near the cash register you can still find the machine where the workmen clocked-in at the beginning of their day. Do not panic, here you will not be asked for working! Instead, you will be able to enjoy all the delicacies of their menu! Among the several dishes of the chef, we suggest you to try the bigoli al torchio (a kind of pasta) with sausage and provolone (a kind of cheese). If you want to try something completely different from what you are familiar with, we warmly suggest you to try the orecchiette (a kind of pasta, typical of the South of Italy) with muscles and turnips. Here, quantity and quality are the key words!
A streetcar named… restaurant
After the Sixties atmosphere of the Vinile, we suggest you to go back to the Twenties with a means of transport, which has nothing to envy to the well-known DeLorean from Back To The Future: the tram. However, is not the usual tram, by which you go around the city, it is instead a tram/restaurant. We are talking about the Tram ATMosfera (i.e. “tram atmosphere”), which has been obtained by restructuring some real vintage trams. This unusual restaurant has been recreated paying attention to all the details in order to let you dive into the charme of the early years of the past century. However, notwithstanding the elegance and peculiarity of this tram, the menu follows the rules of the traditional Milanese gastronomy. No alternative food but enjoy some typical Milanese dishes going around the city on a tram does worth it, do not you agree?