21 December 2011

AUNTIE PASTA: Milan’s Best Kept Secret

SARONNO, Italy - Seeing as we are just days away from Christmas, I thought I'd give you a present. This is a nice present. A present anyone, especially a travel or food editor, would give his or her eye teeth for. It's an insiders list of the best lunch places in Milan. It's a list the Milanese don't want you to have so don't tell anyone you got it from Auntie Pasta.

Some of the restaurants are in the center, others are slightly off center, but all are worth a visit. But be prepared to find the menus in Italian only and the chances of finding someone on the staff with the ability (or time) to translate, slim to none.  Oh, and one more thing, these secret places the Milanese hold near and dear to their hearts are not for sissies, so be prepared to eat.
Dulcis in Fundo
Via Gianfranco Zuretti 55
Milano (MI)

Hidden away in a courtyard, this former factory has had a major make-over. From a place that specialized in grime and grunge it has been transformed into a bright and welcoming restaurant. With as little as 10 euros for lunch, you can choose from some rather exotic dishes. Open for dinner only on Thursday nights.  

Menu choices:  Puff pastry with artichokes, codfish balls, diced swordfish and turnip greens,  lasagnetta with speck, zucchini and saffron, pasta with artichokes and bottarga, risotto with port  and and gorgonzola, tortelli stuffed with truffles, stuffed artichokes, grouper with grain mustard, foie gras, tuna steak with sesame and couscous,  and fillet of veal roasted in a crust.
Prices: More or less 35, without wine

Open for brunch on Saturday, and for dinner on Thursday night. Closed Sunday and Monday  
 Emiliana Tortellini
Via Ariberto 17
Milano (MI)

Eating lunch at Nadia Magnani’s pasta factory is like going to your grandmother's house in the hills of Italy’s most famous pasta making region - Emilia Romgana. It goes without saying that the pasta dishes are exceptional. Yes, there are other things to eat, but it’s the pasta, in every way, shape and form, that steals the show.

Prices: If you try really hard, you can spend about 15 euros, without wine.
Open from Tuesday to Saturday for lunch and on Thursday and Friday nights for dinner.
 Bottiglieria da Pino 
Via Cerva 14
Milano (MI)

This old fashioned trattoria is always busy with the hustle and bustle of waiters bringing home style food to discriminating locals.  The most popular dishes are risotto, soups, quiche and a Lombard staple, boiled beef.
A fixed price menu includes a first and second course with a side dish, a half bottle of mineral water and a quartino of wine.  

The trattoria is only open for lunch but you can reserve the restaurant for a private party of up to 50 people.  Closed on Sundays and evenings.
Triennale Caffe' Design  
Viale Emilio Alemagna 6
Milano (MI)

This restaurant has a most splendid location on the first floor of Milan’s number one design museum,the Triennale. The outside wall is one great window so all tables have a view of Parco Sempione.  Chef David Dalma serves up some pretty spectacular dishes, including some created by award winning  chef, Carlo Cracco. The food is gourmet, but it won’t bust your budget.  For a first and second course you can expect to pay between €20-€25 euros, and Sunday brunch is priced at €28.  
Via Tagiura 5
Milano (MI)
Tel: 02

Tagiura is a resturant that you might mistake for a bar.  But once past the bar, you enter into a elegant dining room with a menu to match. Stuffed pasta dishes reign here, including tortellini and ravioli and other classic favorites. Look for gnocchi with zucchini flowers with a drizzle of melted butter, Cremonese ravioli stuffed with beef that has been cooked in wine and salamella salame, leek soup, cheese ravioli in meat broth and a spoonful of Lambrusco, roasts, stews and a wide selection of cheeses.

At lunchtime a first and second course are priced between €10 and €15 euros. The price increases slightly for dinner and range from €25 - €35 excluding wine.
Open for dinner on Thursdays and Fridays, and closed for lunch on Sunday. Reservations are essential.
Frutteto Viel  
Via Amatore Antonio Sciesa 2
Milano (MI)
Tel: 335.25.50.06

Break out your Sherlock Holmes hat and magnifying glass – this restaurant is difficult to find. If you succeed you will be rewarded with an array of dishes, including vegetarian dishes, such as eggs and asparagus, ravioli in a sweet pepper sauce and meatballs with rice. The menu varies according to the season and what is in the marketplace.
Prices range from 7-13 euros.
Open for lunch daily, and dinner on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays
 Da Teo
Da Teo
Corso Como 3
Milano (MI)

If you long for the taste of the culinary treasures of Puglia, da Teo is the place to go. Managed by Antoinette and Teo, this tiny restaurant delivers the flavors of the south with traditional favorites like orecchiette with cima di rape, tiny lampascione onions in oil, puree’ of fava and friselle, that southern relative of bruschetta.

If the weather is nice, you can sit outside and enjoy the sites and sounds of Corso Como. A first and second course is about €15.
Closed on Sundays and never open for dinner
 Il Bacaro del Sambuco  
Via Monte Napoleone 13
Milano (MI)

Il Bacaro del Sambuco is the little sister of Restaurant Sambuco on Via Messina in Milan. And like her big sister, simple, traditional dishes that are light and sophisticated are the order of the day. If the weather is nice you can sit in the restaurant’s sheltered courtyard, or in the elegant dining room.
Open only for lunch. Closed Sundays and Mondays.
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1 comment:

  1. okay, you're sucking me back in with the food pix... maybe I could admit to missing a few stops on the Milanese road....