Culinary Stops

30 Food and Drink Destinations for Milan Design Week

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30 Food and Drink Destinations for Milan Design Week

Hoards of design lovers armed with SLRs and thick rimmed glasses are set to descend on Milan during the internationally renowned annual Design Week or Salone del Mobile which rolls out citywide every April.

In between gadding around the Salone del Mobile and the obligatory Fuorisalone spin off events and parties, refuelling stations are a definite must, particularly of a certain caliber in keeping with the essential design credentials.

We've gathered some 'on point' design restaurants and bars below not to be missed during the Salone del Mobile, Milan, whether you're just visiting, full time furniture lovers or just in town for one week a year.

Here's where to eat during the Fuorisalone 2018 for lunch, dinner or a quick aperitif.

28 Posti (Metro:Green Line "Porta Genova") 

An intimate restaurant that, despite its informality, always pays attention to detail. During Design Week 2018, 28 Posti restaurant will present a capsule collection created by the meeting of two young creatives: chef Marco Ambrosino and designer Odo Fioravanti. The two will produce a special menu (with special devices created and matched to the courses) that can be tasted from 17 to 22 April, for lunch or dinner.

When to go there: for lunch and dinner
Address: via Corsico 1 

Cinquantadue (Metro: Red Line - "Cairoli")

Opened just a few months Xiaobo Zhou's Cinquantadue is a luxury lounge just a few steps from the Sforza Castle and the Strehler Theater. Here the landlord is chef Sixia, master of contemporary creative sushi with a passion for wagyu. The furnishings, characterized by shades of beige, white écru and the imposing chandelier of Italian design, are the work of the architectural firm Naos Design SRL. An intimate terrace under the trees gives customers the opportunity to eat outdoors.

When to go there: for lunch and dinner
Address: Foro Buonaparte 52

Apollo Club (Metro: Green Line, 'Romolo')

A bar? A chic restaurant? A tea room? The reborn Apollo Club is a bit of all and its versatility (combined with an interesting music program) makes it the perfect destination for the Design Week.

When to go there: at dinner and after dinner (even late)
Address: via Borsi 9

Armani Restaurant (Metro: Yellow Line, 'Montenapoleone')

A refined and international atmosphere for the signature Armani restaurant with a Michelin star. In the kitchen Francesco Mascheroni has recently replaced Filippo Gozzoli as Executive Chef. What better time to try his cuisine than to return from a day at the Salone del Mobile?

When to go there: for dinner
Address: via Manzoni 31

Bar Luce - Fondazione Prada (Metro: Yellow Line 'Lodi')

With interiors fashioned by film director Wes Anderson this bar makes for a fitting stop during the Fuorisalone. Head to the Prada Foundation, where you'll find the small bar tucked inside with surprisingly reasonable prices to match. Don't miss the opportunity to take a selfie (we won't judge you), with the wallpaper of the film Grand Budapest Hotel as backdrop.

When to go: for breakfast, lunch or an afternoon coffee
Address: Fondazione Prada, Largo Isarco 2, Milano

Berton (Metro: Yellow Line 'Repubblica'; Green Line 'Garibaldi')

Design and Michelin starred dining go effortlessly hand in hand and no more eloquently so than at restaurant Berton. If you want to experience the cuisine of a great local chef as part of your visit book a table with chef Andrea Berton in zona Porta Nuova, where an elegant and refined, yet comfortable dining room awaits.

When to go: for dinner 
Address: Via Mike Bongiorno 13

Besame Mucho (Metro: Green Line 'Garibaldi')

This spacious restaurant has a focus on design with a few original touches. From the Acapulco chairs on the ceiling to the bathroom which is the dream of every child - you'll understand why once you enter. The menu features good authentic Mexican fare along with a strong cocktail menu.

When to visit: cocktails and dinner
Address: Liberation Avenue, 15 (Piazza Alvar Aalto)

Bjork (Metro: Red Line 'Porta Venezia')

Bjork is a must visit address for design lovers, both for its delicious and quick lunch menu and for the a la carte dinner menu. Sunday brunch, will also include Saturday for April, and includes white fish soup, smorrebrod, a main dish (of meat, fish or vegetarian) and a dessert, all prepared by Rebecca Varjomaa, chef of Bjork. Here creativity is everywhere: from the pottery of Stig Lindberg and Lisa Larson to the brass of Skultuna, from the glasses of Orrefors and Kosta Boda to the small vintage objects of the twentieth century, up to the great wall with the fantasy of the Notturno by Joseph Frank.

When to go there: during lunch break, for Saturday brunch and for dinner
Address: via Panfilo Castaldi 20

Bicerin (Metro: Red Line 'Porta Venezia')

After having walked for miles in search of the most innovative ceramics or the most revolutionary piece of furniture a good glass of wine will definitely be in order. If you don't want to abandon the elegant surroundings of the design pavilions of the Salone del Mobile and Fuorisalone take the red line on the metro to stop Porta Venezia. Walk a small while and you will end up at Bicerin. Good wine and comfortable sofas await to rekindle your spirits.

When to go: for pre-dinner drinks or an after dinner glass of wine
Address: Via Panfilo Castaldi 24

Carlo & Camilla in Segheria (BUS 90/91)

Set inside a unique industrial location, from Richard Ginori's ceramics to the refined cocktails, and the man behind it all: Carlo Cracco,  this is a spot deserving of its credentials. The cocktails are good, but what is unmissable is the 'mis en place' of the dining room and the spectacular lighting.

When to go: For dinner or for cocktails after dinner 
Address: via Giuseppe Meda 24

Ceresio (Metro: Lilac Line 'Monumentale'; Green line 'Garibaldi')

An incredible city view, sat alongside a swimming pool with a cocktail in hand, what's not to like about relaxing on the rooftop at Ceresio 7. The restaurant and American bar of come courtesy of fashion company DSquared2. Although the spectacular setting is the appeal the interiors are no less desirable. 

When to go: For lunch or pre-dinner drinks
Address: via Ceresio 7

Cittamani (Metro: Yellow Line 'Turati')

Photo: Modestino Tozzi Photographer

On the occasion of the Salone del Mobile, Monday 16 April 2018, Cittamani, the contemporary Indian cuisine restaurant of celebrity chef Ritu Dalmia, and Smeg will offer the Milanese an evening dedicated to the presentation of the cocktail area set up by small Smeg appliances, essential to realize perfect blending.

During the event, three cocktails will be presented, one of which was created specifically for Smeg by barman Mattia Bescapé. But this contemporary Indian cuisine restaurant is worth a visit on any Design Week evening: no Indian restaurant rhetoric, the decor here is ultramodern, embellished with African pottery.

When to go there: at dinner
Address: Mirabello square 5

Dry & Pisacco (Metro: Green Line 'Moscova')

Two addresses from the same team with the same attention given to the venue as the menu. At Dry eat pizza and focaccia, washed down with excellent cocktails; Pisacco's menu is particularly inviting with a frequently changing lunch and dinner menu.

When to go: Dry for dinner or after dinner; Pisacco for lunch or dinner
Address: via Solferino 33,48

Ecrudo (Metro: Green Line 'Porta Genova')

A refined atmosphere and a decidedly fine dining proposal. All the work of the executive chef Umberto Vezzoli and the chef Angelo Mancuso. If you are in the Tortona area between Superstudio and small showrooms, do not forget to try this restaurant. And to toast with colleagues and friends, let yourself be advised by the sommelier Piero Sattanino.

When to go there: at dinner
Address: via Savona 11

Felix Lo Basso (Metro: Red or Yellow Line, 'Duomo')

With a dream panorama, set directly on Piazza Duomo, the minimalist black and white interior is enlivened by the colorful dishes of chef Felice Lo Basso. At Felix - 1 Michelin star - you are always surrounded by elegance and wonderful food: and during April / May, if the weather is clement, ask to sit in the wonderful terrace directly overlooking the duomo's spires.

Where to go: lunch or dinner
Address: Piazza Duomo 21

Filippo La Mantia (Tram Line 9 'Piazza Tricolore')

Chef Filippo La Mantia's restaurant is not just an address for lovers of Mediterranean cuisine: two floors come decorated with pieces of modern Sicilian crafts, 1950s and 60s sofas and Richard Ginori porcelain as well as Virginia Casa. Lunch is excellent, with windows overlooking the sunny Piazza Risorgimento. 

When to go: for lunch
Address: via Poerio 2/a

Kanpai (Metro: Red Line 'Porta Venezia')

Photo: Santi Caleca

Wonderful cocktails and signature dishes are must try in this authentic Japanese izakaya restaurant close to Porta Venezia. Not just design but real art adorns the interiors: the three rooms recreate totally different environments, though accumulated by a discreet elegance that looks with interest to contemporary art. If in the first room, the one that welcomes guests, you are in a very trendy Asian pub, on which stands the imposing chandelier made with sake bottles, then you move between the rustic walls of the second room, where murals with video installations cover the wall by the artist Alessandro Di Vicino, in art Gaudio, a work that pays homage to the many animated streets of the Japanese metropolis. The third room is characterized by large lamps.

When to go there: at the aperitif and at dinner, until late
Address: via Melzo 12

Liberty (Metro: Yellow Line, 'Repubblica', Tram 10/33)

Liberty might not have always been considered a design address, but after the summer the historic Andrea Provenzani restaurant has been given a total makeover thanks to architect Carlo Donati, focusing on a more metropolitan environment with some hints of art- deco. A play on the past and the future, perfect for the chef, who doesn't renounce to the classics, but invests his energies in new dishes.

When to go: lunch or dinner
Address: Viale Monte Grappa 6

Mi-Cucina di Confine (Metro: Lilac Line 'Tre Torri')

If you're dreaming of a Chinese restaurant where you can indulge in some Dim Sum whilst soaking up design delights, this is the place for you. Take the metro (violet line) alighting at the stop for MI-Cucina di Confine.  As you enter notice the iconic wallpaper from British fabric design house 'Osborne and Little', and enormous lamps suspended from the ceiling adding a touch of Eastern Asian elegance.

When to go: for dinner
Address: Viale Cassiodoro, 5

Otto (Tram 12 /14 'Bramante-Sarpi')

A perfect destination for the more youthful Fuorisalone crowd is Otto, in Paolo Sarpi, China town. The fare is an unusual offering of squares of bread with a selection of toppings along with decent cocktails. The relaxed daytime environment livens up come the evening, often in tune with a live DJ set.

When to go: for breakfast, lunch, drinks or brunch at the weekend 
Address: via Sarpi 8

Pacifico (Metro: Green Line 'Moscova')

The best Peruvian restaurant according to a well known Peruvian magazine: from the Pacific, as well as dishes like Ceviche and Tiradito the opulent and elegant surroundings are an equal attraction. An ideal choice for the in crowd.

When to go: for dinner
Address: via della Moscova 29

Potafiori (Tram 9 'Sabotino-Ripamonti)

At Potafiori - the bistrot of flowers - nature is the king. The place ranks somewhere between a restaurant, concert space and a small flower shop. Perfect for the bucolic designer.

When to go: for lunch or dinner (reservations advised)
Address: via Salasco 17

Seta and Bar at Mandarin Oriental

Two areas on which the Mandarin Oriental Milan is undoubtedly focused is design and the food. On the one hand the presidential suite is almost a museum, dedicated to Fornasetti with all original parts and on the other, Gio Ponti - the symbol of minimalism and elegance - the bar and restaurant Seta and Antonio Guide which has one Michelin star. Soak up the food, and be dazzled by the peacock-colored marble and armchairs.

When to go: Seta for dinner, the Bar at any time
Address: Via Andegari, 9

Spazio (Metro: Yellow/Red Line 'Duomo')

Good quality cooking at reasonable prices: the decoration is simple but the windows facing the Duomo's iconic spires do their job more than adequately. The restaurant employs young people with an impressive level of training from three Michelin-starred Niko Romito. 

When to go: for lunch and dinner 
Address: Piazza Duomo

Sushi B (Metro: Green Line 'Lanza')

One of the best sushi restaurants in Milan, Sushi B is not just a good restaurant, it's also a beautiful restaurant. Thanks to its vertical garden  just inside the entrance and its different rooms: the main one housing the bar being bright, with that below designed for sophisticated dining. Not to be missed, are the dishes of maestro Niimori Nobuya and the refined cocktails.

When to go: for drinks or dinner
Address: Via Fiori Chiari 1 / A

Taverna Gourmet (Tram 9 'Montenero-Bergamo')

For a good, if expensive pizza, in a refined setting somewhere between nordic minimalism and a touch of opulence, head to Taverna Gourmet. 

When to go: for dinner
Address: via Maffei 12 

Terazza Triennale (Metro: Red/Green Line ' Cadorna')

Clean lines and a blend of wood and iron characterise the terrace on top of the modern design museum. But the real reason to go to Terrazza at Triennale is the view. The skyline of Milan surrounds the green of Parco Sempione below, with the Duomo, with the Unicredit Tower and the Velasca tower all within easy sight. The kitchen is managed by chef Stefano Cerveni, whilst Luis Hidalgo is the man behind the cocktails at the bar.

When to go: For lunch or evening drinks 
Address: Viale Alemagna Emilio 6 1

Thai Gallery (Metro: Yellow Line 'Reppublica')

Lovers of oriental design will not want to miss the Thai gallery, a new entry on the Milan dining scene opening its doors in the last few months. The restaurant boasts a selection of interesting artwork from young Asian artists as well as a spacious layout, tatami flooring, vibrant fabrics and a giant Buddha who will watch over you while you enjoy some authentic Thai cuisine.

When to go: for lunch, drinks or dinner 
Address: Piazza Alvar Aalto, Via Amerigo Vespucci 12

Tipografia Alimentare (Metro: Red Line 'Gorla')

A few meters walk from the Gorla and Turro stops of the red line of the Milanese underground, the restaurant overlooks the Martesana canal at the height of Ponte Vecchio, historical and suggestive corner of the Gorla district in the pedestrian area. It is one of the liveliest areas of the city: just beyond NoLo, in an area that hosts various refreshment areas and craft breweries, as well as design spaces. Here, a gastronomic offer attentive to the quality of the product finds its place in an informal and modern environment.

When to go: from breakfast to an aperitif
Address: via Dolomiti 1 Triennale 

Triennale Social Pizza (Metro: Red Line 'Cadorna')

To complete the gastronomic offer of the Triennale, Cristian Marasco's pizza has just arrived. For an informal lunch, what could be better than Triennale Social Pizza, a pizzeria inside the design temple?

When to go there: at lunch
Address: viale Alemagna Emilio 6

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