For a taste of the cured meats, cheeses, homemade pasta sauces, cakes and other gastronomical specialties of central Italy, stop by Abbottega, which opened in December in Milan’s vivacious Porta Romana area. Owner David Ranucci, who has several other restaurants including Quinto Quarto in New York’s West Village, said he wanted to create an unpretentious setting to showcase the “true flavors” of his native region. The staff recommends a classic Roman dish called tiella ripiena, a quiche filled with either broccoli and sausage or eggplant and tomato. The rustic, retro atmosphere features white brick walls and old wooden furniture, and the kitchen is open from 8 a.m. to midnight — somewhat unusual in Italy.
— Christine Lee
11 Via Ludovico Muratori
SEE YOU THERE
See You at One, a cafe-store-spa that opened in October in the artsy Brera district of Milan, offers just the right combination for the fashion-week weary.
The menu ranges from sandwiches to fresh fruit smoothies to steak and fish tartare, while at the spa, an hour-long massage runs about 70 euros, or $95 at current exchange.
The cafe area’s quirky decor, inspired by a New York loft, features words like “plug here” or “good morning people” spelled out in giant letters, while floor-to-ceiling shelves are filled with random products for sale, ranging from Marilyn Monroe mugs to book-shaped jewelry boxes. The tables, couches and poufs are also for sale.
See You at One
1 Via Arco
U Barba, which in local Ligurian lingo means “the uncle,” specializes in classic coastal cooking, like pansotti (a type of ravioli), gnocchi and white pizzas. Owners Marco Bruni and Paul Lips wanted to create a cozy, charming ambience, opting for a postindustrial-inspired decor with gray and white shades, a long rustic wooden table and a white brick wall.
“U Barba” was the nickname of a Ligurian comedian in the Thirties named Gilberto Govi, who often played the role of “the uncle” in the theater.
The warmly lit outside seating area, which is garnished with ornamental olive trees characteristic of the Italian Riviera, offers a quaint setting in which to enjoy U Barba’s signature dish: fried anchovies double stuffed with spinach and ricotta.
— ALBERTO ZACCHINI
33 Via Decembrio