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Porta Venezia needs no introduction: it is one of the most beautiful and lively areas of the city. In this very popular neighborhood the bars abound. And, of course, the aperitifs are no less plentiful. Indeed, in the area there are right aperitifsfor almost all tastes. Some are more food-oriented, some are more inclined towards mixology. However, there are many good ones, but what are the excellent ones? We must know how to choose well. There are three basic criteria: the quality of the drinks, the quality of the appetizers and the location. In fact, each of these three factors can change and modify, even sensibly, our personal experience. After all, going out for a drink is a question of style. The place we choose says something about who we are. And if you too want to be flawless, it’s in flawless places you have to go.
This is why we decided to list our five favorite aperitifs in the area. They are all original places, with their precise identity, places where you won’t regret having brought friends, relatives, colleagues or girlfriends to. As long as they are not abstemious, of course.
Via Panfilo Castaldi, 25
In angular position, with large windows that flood it with light, Kilburn offers the Porta Venezia’s viveurs an incredible drink list with more than 20 signature cocktails (with a bottle-shelf packed with more than 200 labels of high-quality spirits), strong London vibes and above all aperitifs full of gastronomic delights, such as the cooked ham from San Marino, sautéed porcini mushrooms, Val Tidone’s coppa or Piacenza’s bacon. The cocktails of the house, while not giving up the most classic proposals, are original and elegant. The recipe of each cocktail is unique and absolutely original and that’s why Kilburn’s aperitif is different from all others.
Via Marcello Malpighi, 7
Eppol wouldn’t feel out of place in Williamsburg or Shoreditch, all the more so in the Milanese Porta Venezia. With a counter that comes finished in exquisite marble and dark wood, surrounded by exposed brick and a garden wall, it’s the perfect blend of elegance and grunge. Cocktails are straightforward but brilliantly balanced, and it is what’s inside your glass, not the glass itself nor the garnish, that’s the focus. A welcome addition to the Milano cocktail scene.
Via Alfredo Cappellini, 25
A must-see for those who want to drink really well in a cosmopolitan location with an urban-chic charm. Moebius has different souls: cocktail bar, bistro and vinyl shop, living in harmony and making this place a unique address where to sip perfectly balanced drinks and taste the delicious gourmet tapas created by chef Enrico Croati, surrounded by an evocative atmosphere that’s difficult to find elsewhere and especially to leave. There is only one thing left to do to really realize the charm exercised by Moebius: to try it immediately and come back as soon as possible.
A secret location, shrouded in mystery and with a timeless atmosphere: 1930 was born during the American Prohibition or so it seems to suggest this cocktail bar with a retro soul signed by the great family of Mag Navigli. Milanese Speakeasy par excellence, 1930 will delight you with the signature cocktails signed by Flavio Angiolillo & Co. in a whirlwind of alcoholic blends and intoxicating olfactory notes, accompanied by a pleasant background retro music. A space-time escape for an ad hoc toast in one of the city’s best drinking adresses.
Via Melzo, 28
Nestled in the eclectic district of Porta Venezia, at Via Melzo number 28, Eppolino is the newcomer of the Eppol family, keeping company to the nearby Eppol Pie and to its Porta Romana’s cousin Dhole. Eppolino is the address where you can experience surprising mixology and a cuisine with Mexican suggestions. It is a sophisticated sign where you can be conquered by a constantly evolving proposal, the perfect combination of aesthetics, experimentation and taste.
Via Lecco, 4
A meeting place for excellent mixology and cared for cuisine, with a special note of merit to desserts, Eppol Pie is a sign with a convivial atmosphere and refined aesthetics. This location echoes the charm of a contemporary Parisian bistro where to be conquered by signature cocktails that are perfect for a toast with friends at sunset.
Viale Piave, 1
This is the heaven of Milanese Mixology, a real experimental laboratory. Dario Comini’s unpredictable genius can be seen in all his amazing creations. Cockails might be served in a sneaker, in a small bathtub, or perhaps in a skull. Of course, there is no shortage of great classics, but our advice is to entrust yourselves to the incredible creations of the staff. Ideal for an aperitif outside the box.
Via Panfilo Castaldi, 35
Porta Venezia surely doesn’t lack places where to recharge the batteries of late night fun, yet, until April 2023, no one had ever thought of opening a cocktail bar that combined mixing and oriental culinary art (sushi for instance), ensuring for both impeccable quality. Elite, brother of Kilburn Milano, was born to satisfy the irrepressible desire for novelty of Ennio Lettera and Alessio di Falco, and to offer the fickle Milanese nightlife an intriguing alternative to the usual aperitif. Fresh Mediterranean sushi for tasting and perfectly blended cocktails are to be expected once seated in the elegant restaurant at number 35 in Via Panfilo Castaldi, relax and enjoy the experience.
Mint Garden Café
Via Felice Casati, 12
With its airy space dominated by light and shades of green, the Mint Garden, more than a bar, resembles a flower nursery or a greenhouse in the middle of the city. For the aperitif you will find a good selection of wines and perfectly executed classic cocktails all accompanied by excellent appetizers that are part of a really rich menu, that also has nice options for vegetarians. Do not underestimate, given the botanical vocation of the place, centrifuged and cold-pressed juices if you prefer non-alcoholic beverages. A must-try.
Via Melzo, 12
Lovers of the “unconventional” cannot miss an aperitif at Kanpai. You’ll have the opportunity to take a sit in an “Izakaya”, an informal Japanese bistrot that offers drinks accompanied by traditional food. Characterized by sober lines, metals and dark color palettes, Kanpai is an industrial-designed environment where to delight yourself with the alcoholic proposals of “alchemist” Samuele Lissoni. Sake, cocktails based on gin and whisky directly from the Land of the Rising Sun, and much more, they will lead you on a journey through the flavors of fine Japanese drinking. And for those who want to experiment, the kitchen offers a selection of bites from the ancient Japanese gastronomic tradition.
Via Melzo, 22
Thinking about France and its riverbank apéros we must resist the temptation to jump on the first flight to Charles de Gaulle. But in Porta Venezia you can relive the atmosphere of La Vie en Rose, nestled around the tables of Égalité, a parisian boulangerie where you can drink a glass of fine French wine in tranquillity. The location reminds of the 50s’ bakeries, with an open laboratory and a zinc counter, where the scent of freshly baked cakes reigns supreme. A variety of planches will whet your appetite with cold cuts, cheese and warm bread, to be enriched with spreadable tapenades. A gourmand treat: taste the small cheese bignés, you can not do without them!