Farewell aperitif, the cocktail is drunk at the table before dinner. In the capital of fashion, there are many places to try fabulous drinks paired with excellent food
For many years the only way to be able to drink an excellent cocktail in the city he was relegated to luxury hotels or old clubs, with the expert barman to ask for something strong.
Ernest Hemingway knew it well, when in Paris he took refuge at the Ritz Hotel to enjoy his gin and tonic. But the Queen’s secret agent, Mr. Bond, was also very demanding in his bar visits, with his vodka martini “shaken, not stirred” (shaken, not stirred).
The term cocktail (cock’s tail) has a mysterious etymology. It seems to derive from the name of a place frequented by Scottish sailors, where you can taste alcoholic mixtures. A word that later became part of the common language. To tell the truth, the history of the cocktail has deep roots, starting with the ancients: that aphrodisiac nectar of the gods portrayed in cups and jars by populations from all over the world and present in the hieroglyphs. A ritual where “leaving room for sensuality and abandonment takes place while sipping divine chalices”, as Silvia Dello Russo writes in her latest book Cocktale mon amour.
Today the experience of these pleasures of drinking blends more and more with haute cuisine, but also with the simpler dishes of the Italian tradition.
Here is a guide to the new openings of restaurants with cocktail bars in Milan, without losing sight of the great classics always at the top.
Let’s start from the fashion district where the Four Seasons hotel, a former 15th century convent, was renovated during the lockdown with the intervention of Patricia Urquiola, starting with the restaurant and the bar. One more reason for a visit to the splendid courtyard of the garden while enjoying a cup of Bergamot Gimlet (vodka Belvedere, cordial with lime, italicus rosolio with bergamot) and then continue in the Zelo restaurant flooded with bright and eclectic contemporary furniture with the Italian cuisine of the chef Fabrizio Borraccino.
The Armani Bamboo Bar has just presented the Milan Skyline Collection: seven brand new signature cocktails, a tribute to the Lombard capital. The new card declines in the glass the symbolic places that can be admired from the seventh floor of the Armani Hotel. Like City Life (based on Gin London Dry Tanqueray, salted peanut sake and pineapple juice). Also on the seventh floor the Armani / Ristorante has reopened its doors with the cuisine of chef Francesco Mascheroni with influences from Japan to Thailand.
Prada Foundation – Torre Restaurant
The Torre Restaurant is on the sixth floor of the Prada Foundation building of the same name: a place of art, architecture and now also of food. Bar and restaurant mix; a mix that is also replicated in the triangular-shaped terrace overlooking the urban space: the restaurant with bistro-style folding tables and chairs and the bar along the parapet, again with the gastronomic proposal of chef Lorenzo Lunghi and an authentically Italian menu at starting from its Tuscan origins.
10 Corso Como Cafè
The restaurant and cafe born in 1998 in a garage has over time become one of the symbolic places of Milan. Perfect for having a drink in the courtyard, but also for stopping to eat. Worth noting is the arrival of the new chef Alessandro Merli and a basic Mediterranean menu with attention to an often international audience. Club sandwiches are not to be missed. Particular attention is then reserved to mixology, starting with the inevitable whiskey spritz with Japanese bases. Bartender is Gianluca Tiesi, Aides school, traditional setting with a personal passion for sake.
In the Isola district, there is Rua, by chef Francesco Zucchi Ricordi: here the Milanese cutlet or the freshly fried paranza are combined with excellent cocktails. The menu is very seasonal although some dishes such as vitello tonnato, mondeghili and schnitzel remain fixed on the menu. One of the focuses is also the fresh drawn pasta produced at home. The cocktail bar is curated by Leonardo Todisco, who arrives here after his experience in the award-winning clubs in the world of mixology Rita and Lacerba in Milan.
Exit Pastificio Urbano by Mattias Perdomo
The goal of the new Exit Pastificio Urbano by Mattias Perdomo is to renew the old concept of the Italian trattoria by combining restaurant and cocktail bar. A gastronomic challenge that revolves around pasta as a connecting element between the world and Italian cuisine. Because Italian cuisine is no longer only Italian cuisine, but it belongs to the world.
This is nothing new, but this cocktail bar & pizzeria has become a successful place in recent years thanks to the combination of cocktails with an icon of the tradition of our cuisine: Neapolitan pizza.