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The beauty of living in Milan is that lovely feeling of knowing that there’s new food to discover around every corner. As children, we wanted the latest high-tech toy, then light-up sneakers, and our first cell phone (no need to bring back the Nokia 3310). With time, our desires change, yet our vices remain. If your guilty pleasures include sugar and 100% homemade apricot marmalade for breakfast, Milan is your ticket to a culinary paradise.
All moms will tell you that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, and you should take our word for it too. So, here are 10 places to get lost in a maze full of buttered croissants and pain au chocolats with insanely delicious fillings.
Via Felice Casati, 27
This is the ultimate dessert kingdom. With perfectly thick pastries made with Mother Yeast, butter, jam, and delicious cream fillings, one doesn’t just come here for one small brioche. Their braids and rolls are a pleasure for breakfast.
Corso Genova, 1
A historic breakfast spot in Italy, the Milanese have enjoyed their sweet and savory delicacies in a charming, retro environment since 1936. Among an exciting variety of croissants, the whole-grain honey brioche is a must-try!
Piazzale di Porta Lodovica, 2
CALLNAVIGATORGattullo bar stands out, first and foremost, for its warm hospitality. With a constant flow of loyal customers greeting each other and talking to the staff, you feel like you’re in your favorite hometown breakfast joint. Their array of both sweet and savory will leave you torn on what to get!
Corso Matteotti, 7
After celebrating its 80th anniversary in 2016, we can safely say that this pastry shop is one of the most historic breakfast spots in our city. Managed by the Langé family since 1986, the master behind the scenes is Luciano Vismara, who after 57 years at Sant Ambroeus, still maintains the prestige of this café-pasticceria at all hours of the day.
Via Cagliero, 14
Among their many locations, do not miss this little pastry shop. Unlike any other pastry maker in the city, apart from their truly exceptional variations of Italy’s most well-known desserts, you will laud their original combinations, tastes, quality, and consistency. Try their mini cheesecakes, mini crème brulées, mini traditional Neapolitan triangles, crispy pastries, Bavarian fruit cream, pistachio desserts, coffees, and mini mousse.
Via Clerici, 1
The Alemagna family, a brand known for its delicious chocolates and pralines, chose via Clerici, a corner near Piazza della Scala just a few steps from the splendid Cleric Palace to open T’a. A bistro and a pastry shop with a small selection of chocolates and pastries, it is an ideal stop for every moment of the day.
Corso Garibaldi, 65
The Moleskine Café, open from morning till late in the evening, has many faces. It’s a caffé, art gallery, shop, bookstore, and lounge restaurant. However, one quirk of this eclectic place is the continental breakfast menu, much like a hotel. The options are varied from classic bread, jams, and butter, to scrambled eggs with meats and cheeses, to the “healthy” options of yogurt, seasonal fruits, and smoothies.
Via Madonnina, 10
At this relaxing oasis, you can savor a breakfast of baked croissants, sip tea with friends, or sink your fork into one of the freshly baked homemade cakes. A famous pasticceria in the city, Di Viole di Liquirizia specializes in pastries of British and French origin; from scones and macaròns to heavily frosted donuts and cupcakes.
Via Santa Maria alla Porta, 11/A; Via Monte Napoleone, 9; Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II
The Prada Group has recently acquired a significant landmark of the Milanese pastry industry since 1824, as the famous Pasticceria Marchesi wishes to expand, even though managerial power remains in the hands of the family. The third installation of this shop opened in the heart of Milan (after the location at Via Montenapoleone) in Galleria Vittorio Emanuele, a symbol of the city. The charming and elegant ambiance is perfect for breakfast, lunch, and afternoon tea.
Via Monte Napoleone, 8
An international melting pot where you can dine, have coffee and enjoy the countless delicacies offered. Cova, Cova, Cova … what a temptation! Whether you want to take a snack to-go and enjoy it in the most intimate places, or stay seated under huge crystal chandeliers, the result is assured: your mouth will want to make a subscription to this place of taste and tradition!
Via Turati, 30
With a world of sweet and savory delicacies at your feet, there is something for everyone! The atmosphere is warm, a crossroads between a French bistro and an American chain, but with your grandma’s best cooking. Here, you can try all kinds of cakes prepared in-house right in front of you. For your first visit, try the breakfast “of samples,’’ featuring warm homemade bread, butter, and artisanal marmalade.
Via Savona, 2
A slice of sweetness in the heart of Via Savona, this place will spoil your palate and start the day off on the right foot. With pancakes, waffles, brownies, and cakes, it’ll be impossible to choose!
Via Uberto Visconti di Modrone, 2
Taveggia is a chic place that’s always full of visitors. Famous lawyers and influential political figures, with newspapers in hand and well-groomed mustaches, stop here for a cappuccino and a brioche every morning. This excellent place is only two steps away from the Tribunale.
Via Bergognone, 3
I will be brief since Luca does not need a long description. This small pastry shop offers fantastic cream-filled brioches and pastry cream horns that are comparable to the ones at Panarello, another historic pastry maker.
Via Bernardino Corio, 8
This name might not mean much to you now, but its simplicity makes it utterly unique. Here you can eat at any time, but we recommend coming by for breakfast, where the brioche alla crema will make you lose your mind.
Via Vigevano, 10
The name of the place is the Italian word for “cut,” but we want to add the word “sewn” because their creations are simply magical. Their great croissants prepared by natural fermentation, all kinds of coffee, and savory offerings are to die for.
Via Speronari, 3
Have you ever eaten a cannoncino at Panarello? If you jogged your memory and found that the answer is “no,” stop reading this article immediately, put your shoes on, and go now!
Via Vincenzo Monti, 26
Two steps away from Cadorna, this pastry shop is heaven for those with a sweet tooth. Every morning, you can enjoy all 14 variations of their phenomenal brioche! A delightful outdoor seating area also allows you to eat outdoors in the beautiful summer season.
Via Borgogna, 5
Bastianello is a work of art and labor of love. With croissants of all kinds and (most importantly) high quality, Bastianello is one of many historic breakfast locales in the center of Milan, offering an unmistakable style and a fantastic smell.
P.zza Risorgimento, 6
Sissi and all of her goodies have been delighting the palates of the chic Milanese for over 25 years in an intimate little spot. The pink tones, bohemian style, and beautiful outdoor pergola let you recoup from the hot summer days. With about 10 outdoor tables and even less inside, their brioche is what makes Sissi truly famous in Milan. You can also have your pastry filled on the spot at the counter!
Via Ugo Foscolo, 5
With quality products and a friendly atmosphere, this place makes it impossible to resist temptation. Whether it be the aromas or perhaps the stylish decor, if you happen to pass by you’re screwed. The breakfast is amazing.
There is one last place I advise you to visit, and that is your hometown, where your heart belongs. My favorite breakfast takes me back to Emilia Romagna, evoking a memory of freshly cracked eggs, bread, and butter. Where is yours?