Milan Restaurants

Establishment neighborhood
Via Panfilo Castaldi, 18, Lazzaretto
Milan’s best restaurants tend to be meat-heavy, so it was a nice surprise to discover Joia, which is chef Pietro Leeman’s ode to vegetables. Focusing on seasonal produce, Leeman doesn’t mess too much with nature, letting the freshness of the finest organic market ingredients shine through. Simple dishes are strongest, like a porcini and pumpkin salad with cumin-dusted polenta or an Indian-style vegetable soup with creamy coconut and Himalayan curry, avocado, and lovage.
Carlo e Camilla in Segheria
Via Giuseppe Meda, 24, Navigli
An old brick-and-cement sawmill with soaring ceilings makes a pretty cool industrial setting for this restaurant in the hip Porta Romana neighborhood. The handmade pastas and plates of risotto are great, but the cocktails are the real stars here. Helmed by Filippo Sisti (a big deal in the cocktail world), the wild creations incorporate rarely seen drink ingredients like green cardamom and apricot marmalade. Pieces from the owners’ own art collection (by the likes of Ron Arad and Ross Lovegrove) and huge crystal chandeliers add to the dramatic atmosphere.
Da Giacomo
Via Pasquale Sottocorno, 6, Zona Risorgimento
The setting of Da Giacomo couldn’t be more old-school Milan—the colorful graniglia floors, the pistachio-painted walls, the embossed-silk wallpaper, and the formal white tablecloths all create a throwback to the 1950s, when the trattoria first opened. But the food is just as good—especially the grilled fish dishes—and its location (in the Piazza Duomo, within the Museo del Novecentro) is convenient for a break in between sightseeing.
Via Gaetano de Castillia, 28, Centro Direzionale
Milan excels at beautifully repurposed restaurants. Case in point: Ratanà, which occupies an old Art Nouveau railway warehouse in the fast-changing neighborhood around the Porto Garibaldi train station. The setting is matched by the food, and the menu is full of artfully plated seasonal dishes that might include white asparagus served with a breaded poached egg and fresh thyme or trout with blood orange and fennel. In warm weather, ask for a table outside, so you can enjoy the whole meal next to a vegetable garden.