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09 March 2016

Ristorante Olei in Milan, Italy

You can easily get lost in the innumerable names of restaurants to try in Milan. Like all metropolitan cities, the choices are hard to cut down to a few and worse, to just one - just enough to keep yourself stuffed with good food and wine while in town. Maybe you are like me. I have a habit of checking out where to eat before I arrive to any place even if that means standing up on one corner of the town, googling what are available close by. I like being prepared and be assured of a table when the clock chimes eat o'clock! The value of the money matters where I go to and what I receive back.

Le Capesante Scottate su Millefoglie di Patate, Crema di Zucchine, e Tartufo Nero (Warm Scallop on Millefeuille of Potatoes, Cream of Zucchini, and Black Truffles)

Since my trip to Milan was just overnight and dinner was already at the Di Che Pasta Siamo Event by Chef Vittorio Fusari, I only had one lunch to enjoy in Milan. Along with my husband, we chose something that's outside the center, in a more subdued part of the city, in Via Washington.

Le Fettuccine a Guancialino di Sauris e Pecorino Toscano su Salsa Chiara di Melanzane (Fettuccine with Small Guanciale of Sauris, and Tuscan Pecorino with Light Eggplant Sauce)

The restaurant is divided into two sections. On the left side is the bistrot where the atmosphere is casual but still maintaining the general style of the place. On the right side is the restaurant, the bigger part with more elegant trimmings. It is decorated mostly in white and beige with parquet flooring. It was one of the reasons why I chose the place for lunch. Its simplicity evoked elegance. I loved it.  

Both photos of the bistrot were taken from their site.

The menus for both areas are different from each other because the bistrot is dedicated more to the people who want quicker meals, especially for the diners who go there after being in the theater, given its proximity to the Teatro Nazionale. The restaurant, on the other hand, is dedicated to the traditional diners who can take their time in eating.

Top: Lo Sformatino di Verdure su Salsa al Profumo al Curry (Vegetable Flan on Curry Sauce)   Bottom: Il Flan di Zucchine al Tartufo Nero su Fonduta al Parmigiano Reggiano (Zucchini Flan with Black Truffles on Parmigiano Reggiano Fondue)
Il Cannolo al Branzino al Cuore di Gambero su Crema di Patate e Zafferano ai Profumi dell'Orto (European Seabass Cannolo with Shrimp on Cream of Potatoes and Saffron)

With no kids in tow this time and a train that doesn't leave until hours later, my husband and I had time to taste the food and relax. Needless to say, we both went for the restaurant's tasting menus. I went for the 3-course seafood tasting menu plus dessert while my husband ordered the 4-course vegetable and meat tasting menu plus dessert. The selection of bread we had were all baked in the restaurant.  

Top:  Le Tagliatelle alla Bottarga, Pepe Nero e Cruditè di Gamberi Marinati al Limone  (Tagliatelle with Bottarga, Black Pepper and Raw Shrimp Marinated in Lemon)  Bottom: La Guancia di Vitello Brasata su Patate Croccanti e Verdurine di Stagione (Braised Veal Jowl on Crispy Potatoes and Seasonal Vegetables)

All the dishes in my menu were excellent, with fresh quality ingredients. The serving amounts were generous, especially the pasta. I was thinking that If I went for the 4-course menu, I wouldn't have made it to the dessert. In fact, I barely finished my dessert. All my dishes were exceptional but what really stood out was the Warm Scallop on Millefeuille of Potatoes, Cream of Zucchini, and Black Truffles. My husband's dishes were all outstanding (yes, I tried every single one of them) and the veal was unbelievably tender.

Top: I Bignè alla Crema di Cioccolato  Bottom: La Mousse al Caramello Leggermente Salato, Perle di Cioccolato e Polvere di Sablè

A good dining experience is always worth sharing to others so if you happen to be in Milan and you don't know where to eat, you have one idea up your sleeves. 

Opened in 2013, Ristorante Olei is owned by Luca Ferrarini while Chef Francesco Pontrelli operates the kitchen. Prior to Olei, Chef Francesco Pontrelli was chef at the Ristorante Celestina in Rome then at the Armani Restaurant in New York. 

Ristorante Olei
Via Washington, 20 Milano
Tel. 39 024983997
Closest metro stop: Wagner
Closed on Saturday lunch and Sundays

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Both photos above were taken from their site.