The food scene in Milan stems from an interesting backstory. The northern Italian city has always been one of the country’s most affluent, so the signature dishes mirror the refined tastes of its upper-class citizens. While you can still find luxurious dishes on menus throughout the city, a newer and more humble wave of cuisine infiltrated restaurants, giving patrons a wider variety of options while looking for what to eat. Let’s take a look at dishes from both sides of the aisle.
Risotto alla Milanese
First and foremost: The creamy Risotto alla Milanese dish made with saffron remains one of the signature dishes of the city. Try it at Trattoria Masuelli San Marco, serving the traditional recipe since opening in 1921.
La Cotoletta alla Milanese
No meal is more beloved or widely consumed than Cotoletta alla Milanese, made with breaded veal cutlets in a zesty sauce. You can find the dish on the menus of both Michelin-starred restaurants and street food corner shops. Order a plate at the cozy Da Martino for a local-approved sample of the dish.
No trip to Italy is complete without a gelato (or three) each and every day. Check out Gelato Giusto, a shop specializing in gelato and chocolate, for some of the best gelato flavors in the city. Craving the basics? Try the tiramisu or ricotta. Feeling adventurous? Go for the earl grey or pumpkin.
While tiny street-front stall Ravioleria Sarpi can’t quite be considered late-night food (it’s only open until 10 p.m. every night), it certainly looks and feels like it. The takeout-only window in the heart of Chinatown serves up piping hot Jiaozi dumplings filled with beef and leek, pork and cabbage or rough-chopped vegetables. There will likely be a line of college students and Italian youth, but it moves fast.
Are you craving pizza, pasta, sandwiches, coffee, cheese or anything else Italian? Find your way to Eataly Milan, an Italian grocery store on steroids that took over cities from Rome to Los Angeles.
Once business concludes, a world of wonder awaits in many of Italy’s incredible cities.
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