You are in Milan and you are confused with the plethora of restaurants to choose from. I know the predicament fully well because I just went to Milan and being limited to just a few meals in my 3-day stay there, I had to choose well the restaurants to go to. When I travel, I want to eat well and foremost in my priorities is to try the local food. But after having some of the local food and you want to try other cuisines, then go for it because it is just the most natural thing to do in Milan. Milan may only be secondary to Rome as the second most important city in Italy but it plays a fundamental role in the gastronomic scene of the country.
|Top: Antonello Cannone, Pierluigi Biancardi and Gianluca Ferri|
Italy is divided into 20 regions and every region has a unique cuisine of its own. And I am not even discussing the difference of dishes from town to town. If you have had the chance to travel from the heel to the top of this boot-shaped country then you must know what I am referring to. Experiencing an Italian region (or town) is not just about going through the whole nine yards of sightseeing but it's also about diving into the gastronomic side of it.
|Tagliere Iberico (Spanish Iberico Ham Platter)|
Being an avid traveler in Italy for the past 16 years, I have been to all 20 regions (but still so many towns to see!) and tasted a lot of the regional foods. By this time, I have developed my own preferences of regional food. The southern regions like Puglia have a special place in my table because they are Mediterranean which use a lot of fresh fruits and vegetables, legumes, olive oil and fish. The wines, extra virgin olive oil, cheese and the other food products are exceptional.
In a nutshell, Puglia is exactly where the heel is in the boot-shaped country. Some of the best traditional foods come from there. You should know some of their products because they are known worldwide. Burrata is that fresh cheese made of mozzarella and cream inside with an outer covering of solid mozzarella. Then there are the orecchiette which are the ear-shaped pasta, friselle which are the crunchy dry bread baked in stone ovens and taralli which are like crackers that are similar to the texture of breadsticks.
While in Milan, one of the restaurants I went to specializes in Puglian cuisine. Trulli Love takes you to a genuine Puglia experience with their food (even the extra virgin olive oil) and wine. They practically transported the best of the region in their modern space in Via dei Bossi. The restaurant has two storeys of dining area and a see-through big glass window that permits the guests to see the preparation of the food.
The food and wine were excellent, from the appetizers down to the desserts. Since we were a group, we started a big antipasto. The friselle with straciatella (shredded fresh cheese similar to the inner part of the burrata) and caponata, platters of Iberico ham (the only non-Puglian part of the menu) and local cheese. Our wine, a 2014 Casa Primis Cigliegiolo, has the characteristic aroma reminiscent of cherries and has the perfect freshness. The pasta dishes were good, simple and cooked with ingredients with excellent quality. Orecchiette with broccoli raab and breadcrumbs is something that you will encounter a lot in Puglia (it's one of my favorite pastas) so try this one. Take note that in Milan, they like their pasta soft, cooked a minute longer, so if you want it al dente, request it.
|Frutta Givrè (Artisan fresh fruit gelato - prickly pear and mandarin, served in the fruit peel)|
With more than one appetizer plate, there was no more room for the main course after the pasta but you have to end your meal with one of their desserts. Being a hot summer night, the gelato in the peel (Frutta Givrè) was a refreshing and delicious choice. I chose prickly pear and mandarin which were so intensely good. You can easily have seconds!
|Sfogliatina Chantilly (Puff pastry with chantilly and cream of Femminello del Gargano IGP lemon)|
A dining experience in Trulli Love takes you to a splendid Puglian gastronomic trip because they use only the best ingredients from the different towns in the region. If you liked the ingredients used in your food, you can purchase some of them at the restaurant.
Trulli Love is open everyday except Sundays from 10:00 to 23:30. It is located in Via dei Bossi, 2. For reservations, call 02 45488524 or e-mail them at firstname.lastname@example.org.
You can check their menu at this link.