In my last post, you saw some a few of my favourite places in Milano. However, there is so much more to this city. I spent a semester studying at the Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore. I hope you enjoy reminiscing with me on my favourite eats and places to visit.
Cairoli is a place a visited a fair bit, due to its proximity to the Castello Sforzesco and my University. I ate there few times and window shopped along Via Dante.
For breakfast or snack, I would just stop for one of this delicious focaccia from Caffe Milano. I couldn’t believe that a couple of espressos and this focaccia only cost a few euros to take away but more than double to sit. I believe they are closed now, but you can find plenty of cafes and bakery specialising in these kinds of focaccia. Another place we visited was Majestic Cafe. Yes, it’s a little touristy, but they have amazing salads and not expensive. One of the first restaurants I took Marco too was around here as well, but I can’t remember the name. It was quite elegant inside. We had La Cotoletta alla Milanese and Risotto alla Milanese.
Probably one of my favourite restaurants that I kept returning to was Ristorante Osteria Al 29, which is a short walk on Corso Magenta. They are very welcoming and the decor is very old fashioned and homely. My favourite dish was Spaghetti allo scoglio and Marco loved their calzone. It’s definitely worth the walk if you’re near by.
Cairoli is quite a nice area in terms of architecture and its proximity to Castello Sforzesco and Parco Sempione. The castle is one of the places you should visit when in Milano. It was built in the by the duke of Milano in the 15th century by Francesco Sforza. It hosts a few museums including the Pinacoteca del Castello Sforzesco, Museum of Ancient Art and The Museum of Musical Instruments. At university, I took an art history course, which really gave me an interest in the Sforza family history and their relationship with Leonardo da Vinci.
Nearby the Parco Sempione, which is a great place to relax. As you can see from my photos it was snowing, but I did spend time there towards the end of my trip when it was lovely and green.
Santa Maria delle Grazie is a beautiful church which is also a short walk away. You can find The Last Supper by Leonardo Da Vinci in the refectory of the church convent. The painting is surprisingly fussy, but an amazing thing to see.
Navigli was where I lived the majority of the time I was in Milano. Along the canal, there are so many restaurants and aperativo bars. Aperativo is quite a great thing for students since it’s a cheap feed to go with friends. You only need to buy one cocktail and enjoy the incredible buffet. My Italian family thought it was so strange that we would do that for dinner as it’s only meant to be a snack, but with all that good food, who wouldn’t want to eat. Our favourite spreads were at MAS Milano and Manhattan Navigli.
The restaurants along the canal, in nearby streets, are also really good. For Australian standards and with my exchange rate at the time the restaurants were quite cheap to eat out regularly. Some of my favourite places include L’Altro Luca e Andrea, La Magolfa, Anema e Cozze and Premiata Pizzeria. When we felt like something different we would have Greek at Greek Fusion (previously a little Ghiros shop) or Japanese at Temakinho. For something sweet, our favourite was La Rinomata Gelateria and Amorino. Another one of my favourites is Cioccolatitaliani, which also now has a location on the canal. I use to walk 40 minutes to university just so I could get my morning cappuccino di soya on the way. If I asked for this at any other bar they would laugh at me.
A short walk away on Corso di Porta Ticinese is a great place for shopping and there’s plenty to eat along the way. One of our favourite breakfast places was The Bagel Company. It was one of the few places we could get something that resembled what we considered breakfast. I also loved the variety of the freshly baked focaccia at La Voglia. I also loved the dairy free gelato from Frozen.
Another great reason I loved the canal was the events. Some of these include Fiera di Sinigaglia (weekly flea market) Mercatone dell’Antiquariato (monthly Antiques Market), Fiori & Sapori sul Naviglio (Flowers and Flavors, April and October), and NavigliMi (Boat Show).
Brera is another beautiful area to visit, which is not far from the centre of Milano. It is known for its artistic heart and bohemian flare. The Brera Pinacoteca is the major public gallery in Milano and holds the main Renaissance art collection in Italy.
When it was Valentine’s day we wanted to go somewhere really special and have a memorable meal. My aunty recommended we go to Brera. We came across this L’Osteria di Brera and had an amazing two-course meal. For dessert, I had a waffle with raspberry sauce in Amorino.
Duomo di Milano is the main cathedral and centre point of the city. You can not come to Milano and not glaze upon this magnificent structure. I really recommend buying a ticket to see the top of the Duomo. Not only do you get great views of the city but you can see the amazing architecture up close. It’s also nice to visit on a religious holiday. We went to the Easter service. They turned on the lights and we got a better view of the Renaissance art.
The Cimitero Monumentale is not a must do in Milano, but nice to visit if you have the time. It has an amazing array of artistic tombstones and monuments. I’ve never seen anything like it before. One grave had the entire Last Supper. There are many famous people buried here as well, including champion drivers, actors, architects, comedians and musicians.
One of the courses that I took was food culture, which included cooking classes and excursions. The lessons were completely conducted in Italian and we had to record the recipes as we went. Most of these recipes were dairy free or there was a modified version for me to eat. I still have some of those recipes tucked away somewhere and may make some for this blog at a later stage. On excursions, we visited a Panificio (bakery) and a Caseificio (cheese factory). As stressful and as nasty as our teacher was I am very happy that I took this course for the cooking lessons alone.
Another amazing thing that I got to do was be an audience member a daytime TV show from Berlusconi’s TV stations. The show was Pomoriggio Cinque and the host is Barbara D’Urso.
When we were lining up to go in I was picked out of the line along with another girl. I guess because we were young. We were chosen to sit behind Barbara during the show. I guess to make her look like she has a young demographic. Most of the people who were in the audience were old people. It was incredibly awkward to sit there for so long with no expression. Other than that it was fun to see the behind the scenes.
Now I leave you with more food porn for our favourite family restaurant and some homemade family meals.
3 thoughts on “Milano: amazing food and beautiful architecture”
Love the pics and info Vanessa! I would love to spend some time in beautiful Milano!
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