Popular Milanese pasta spot Miscusi has branched out with its first international opening in London’s Covent Garden. Alberto Cartasegna, founder and CEO of the B-Corp certified eatery, breaks down his culinary inspirations from his hometown…
Nostalgia at Latteria di San Marco
Entering Latteria di San Marco in Milan feels like visiting your nonna. Arturo and Maria Maggi have run this small but mighty family restaurant since 1965 and I’ve been going here almost every week since I can remember. Most of my fondest food memories are from my family meals – which today still influence my taste and recipe ideas. With just eight tables, it feels like a home away from home and, although the interiors have remained the same, the menus are different almost every day to reflect the seasons. The vegetables are locally sourced from a garden just outside the city. Some of my favourite dishes include pappa al pomodoro alla Toscana and puntarella (a type of chicory).
Wine tasting at Cantina Urbana
Wine has been an Italian staple for thousands of years, and nothing beats Cantina Urbana Milano Wine Collective, the first winery in the city of Milan. The winery has a network of artisans and trusted winegrowers and produces vino using the best grapes from the collective’s vigneron friends scattered throughout Italy. At Miscusi, when we were choosing our wines, it was a no-brainer to serve wine from Cantina Urbana at all our venues. For anyone visiting Milan who enjoys a glass of red, visit the cellar to create your own bottle under the guidance of a professional cellarman!
Experiencing the sunset at Idroscalo Di Milano
There’s nothing better than a day spent wakeboarding at the biggest watersports park in Italy, Idroscalo Di Milano, then relaxing in the company of friends while eating and drinking on the docks and enjoying the evening with a cold glass of Birra Poretti as the sun sets. Idroscalo Di Milano is located inside a beautiful nature park, where sustainability is at the core (the bar has no single-use plastic) – something that strikes a chord with me and our mission at Miscusi.
Eating sustainably at Joia
Joia is Italy’s first vegetarian restaurant to receive a Michelin star (in 1996). Launched in 1989, the eatery is led by chef Pietro Leemann and promotes a healthy, plant-based cuisine that is sustainable for the planet. With delicious dishes that are connected to nature, each plate is the result of exploration and experiments. The restaurant’s motto is an ethos close to my heart: ‘We are what we eat, we become what we choose to eat.’ We believe in a Mediterranean diet that is renowned as the most sustainable diet in the world. Don’t go to Joia without trying chef Pietro’s menu degustazione (tasting menu), which will leave you surprised every time by the unexpected but fantastic flavour combinations.
Dining with Giancarlo Morelli at Hotel Viu Milan
If you want a dinner with friends that easily becomes a party, then Hotel Viu Milan is the place to go and Michelin-starred Giancarlo Morelli the chef to visit! Giancarlo creates a warm atmosphere it’s hard to leave. You can eat with friends at the communal table close to the kitchen (opening image), or experience his fine art of cooking right where the magic happens: at the chef’s table inside the beautiful kitchen designed by Giancarlo himself. Here, guests can have a relaxed but gourmet dinner, with formalities left at the door.
Taking a trip to the farmers’ market
As a boy, I used to come to the farmers’ market with my father to buy meat for our Sunday ragù, a family tradition. The Ortomercato di Milano is the largest wholesale fruit and vegetable market in Italy. The markets of Milan are often the best places to shop in the city for well-priced quality meat and vegetables but, more than that, the atmosphere and the air you breathe here resonates with a community feel. It was here that I discovered Recup, a project that aims to combat food waste and social exclusion by recovering food before it’s thrown away, and then redistribute it to anyone who wants to take it.