An American Girl in Milan

Shopping at Duomo square

My Milanese street style
the most delicious gnocchi! 
hanging in Duomo square
Milanese pizza with ultra fresh cheeses and prosciutto
Duomo Cathedral, Milan

On Thursday we took a train ride through the picturesque French countryside, on the way to our next destination: Milan.

As soon as we got settled into our hotel, we headed to see the cathedral at Duomo. It is centered in a large shopping area with lots of restaurants and cafes so we took advantage of the opportunity to people watch as well. Milanese women are impossibly chic! And, it seems, have a strong preference toward luxury items as it appeared that most of them sported only Louis Vuitton or Gucci bags on their arms and much of the shopping in the Duomo area is the same--with Chanel, Prada, Dior, Miu Mui, McQueen, and just about any other luxury designer you can think of, to boot. It is wonderfully drool worthy.

For dinner we chose outdoor seating at Mercanti Caffe where we had our first taste of the tantalizing morsels that are authentic Italian food. We shared gnocchi, seafood risotto, pesto pasta, tortellini and the most delightful prosciutto and mozzarella plate. It was a refreshing change from Paris where we were satisfied more visually with the amazing sights. We knew that in Italy--it would be about the food!!

After luscious, deep sleep with the aid of pre-bed aromatherapy, compliments of the hotel and a huge breakfast buffet spread of cream filled croissant, fresh fruit, eggs, cold meats and cheeses, fresh juices and more, we were so refreshed and ready for a laid back day of shopping on Friday. We found cute little boutiques and a jewelry shop to snag gifts for ourselves and for our loved ones.

At the recommendation of the hotel concierge, Da Berti was our dinner place for the evening, so we could experience an authentic, multi-course Milanese meal. Da Berti had wonderful ambiance and looked sort of like a rustic farmhouse that had been converted into a restaurant, with dark wood furniture, exposed beams in the ceiling and shelving stacked high with vintage bottles of wine. The menu we shared consisted of fontina and Gorgonzola cheeses, salami, ham, cotta, mushroom risotto, ravioli with pumpkin flour, saffron and Parmesan cheese, boiled cod with mashed potatoes as well as braised beef with palenta. Each course was more yummy than the last, and I'd have to say my favorite was the pumpkin filled ravioli! I don't usually like pumpkin very much, by after having that--I am a believer. We each chose our own desserts to finish the meal; mine was a rich, smooth white chocolate mousse.

Milan was the perfect city for a jaunt in-between Paris and Rome (our next destination) as in each of those cities, we had heavy sightseeing agendas. But in Milan we had an opportunity to rest and re-group before our next city!

Read more more about my travel in these posts: