When I visited: November 2013
Location: Milan, next to La Scala opera house
Team: Roberto Conti (Executive Chef), Luca Cinacchi (Food and Beverage Manager), Nicola Dell’Agnolo (maitre d’), Vincent Lopresto (Head Sommelier)
Rating in the Michelin Guide: 1 star
What to wear: Men – shirt and jacket and nice trousers and shoes; women – a smart dress and/or smart trousers and a top
Ambience: Lovely, posh, utterly Italian
Course of the meal: Risotto with white truffles
If I could change one thing: Remove Gorgonzola from the macarons
I went to this restaurant with my partner Owl on a trip to Milan and we knew it was going to be a good meal when they started off with a demonstration of their white truffles. White truffles are rare, expensive to eat and utterly delicious, and we got to handle a whole one while they cannily described the courses involving white truffles (so of course we later asked for the white truffle risotto). The restaurant is above the opera gift shop and has such a friendly but high-end feel, and we saw two old men dining together who were hopefully some iteration of Professor X and Magneto from X-Men (well they were in my head anyway).
We had the dinner menu and (indulgently as this was a holiday) started off with a glass each of Dom Perignon champagne. We ordered a white, mineraly Italian wine to accompany the meal.
First off we were given a fish crisp and then a crisp with mushrooms and orange to get us going. This was followed by beef braesola with anchovies, citrus and bone marrow, then veal snout cooked in Spumanti with mackerel and cucumber sorbet. The portions were perfectly sized so you got enough mouthfuls to enjoy anything but you didn’t get too full too quickly.
Happily we moved on to Italian pasta and rice dishes, with cannelloni with risotto and tomato puree, then the aforementioned amazing risotto with white truffles, which was obviously a standout course. To end the ‘mains’, we got a veal cube Milanese (in breadcrumbs) with pumpkin and green apple – I do appreciate the mixing of fruit with savoury courses and think more restaurants could do this.
The dessert section of the menu consisted of a gorgonzola and coffee macaron, followed by a tiramisu truffle with black truffle – a great mix of sweet and umami flavours. With our green tea we got an impressive assortment of petits fours – orange jelly, peanut butter macaron, cashew nuts in cocoa, French traditional pastry with marmalade, white meringue, and cannelloni with hazelnut.
This meal was so good that it sealed the impression of Milan for me as opulent, indulgent, fun and friendly. If you’re taking a trip to Milan, don’t hesitate to book a meal here.