How does 3 hours walking and sampling fine Italian cuisine sound? Well, at 10am we were about to find out, when Sylvie greeted us at Via Soferino at the Panifica or bread shop. This Segway walking and food tour was a nice introduction to Milan and little did we realise that with temperatures close to 30 degrees, stepping inside cool shops was a good way to go. There were 6 of us. Mark and Dina, Bill and Janine, Bill and me. We started off with the usual conversations – where have you come from? where are you heading? how long are you staying in Italy?
The first tasting was an Italian cream roll with puff pastry called Cannoncino. It has a traditional custard in the filling. Very tasty. A plate of Bigne was served with a chocolate top. Bill and Janine slipped away to order a coffee.
Walking along with Sylvie she showed us the historical Brera which is the oldest neighbourhood in Milan. We talked architecture, art and food. Milan is a global capital of fashion and design. Think Leonardo da Vinci, Gothic Duomo di Milano Cathedral.
Shortly we came to the Parma and Co where hung hams awaited us. Rather large in size. Were they real? I thought. Yes the pork was authentic and cured for up to 2 years.
Sylvie pointed out the cuts of meat from the pig. We sampled a plate of prosciutto, parmesan cheese and a beer!! And it was only 10.45am! This artisan beer ( Menabrea) brought both Bill’s a smile.
I discovered that Bill and Janine were newly married and living in Sicily, with the intention to moving back to California where her parents lived. They were fun and eager to test taste the flavours of Milan.
With a plate of saffron risotto next at Jamaica, we gobbled down this dish with mineral water.
Creamy and tasty. Easy to digest. Great! Risotto alla Milanese ! A perfect, simple dish that requires few ingredients.
Here’s Mark from the States, who lives part time at lake Como, enjoying his lasagne. And Dina, well, she scooped up the pork and beef meatballs. It was easy to eat three or four of these.
After a Spritz/ wine or champagne ( the apertivo) we finished the tour with a delicious, authentic Italian gelato. I tried the pistachio verde di Bronte and Bill chose the Bette e nezzo – gianduja with Nutella. A favourite of the shop keeper was Calacauso – peanuts, caramel and milk chocolate.
Just after 1pm we finished our little walking tour. AH! our stomachs full and almost time for a nap. No, we were within walking distance to the Cathedral, so we said our goodbyes and thanked our friendly guide. I do recommend this type of fuss free experience.
I would like to show you 2 salads we enjoyed At Menton, near the Italian border. So French really! They were large, wholesome and flavoursome. Not at all heavy. Note the stuffed courgettes and tomatoes.
Stay with me for my final travel diary post next time in Italy. Love Margaret x