Salone de Mobile or Milan Design Week is one of the most exciting times for the city every year but it is also one of the most frustrating times when it comes to dining and wining. With the surge in the number of visitors who are clamouring to try all the spots that Milan is famous for, reservations are hard to come by and honestly, peak times aren't exactly the best moments to experience any venues. So, if like us, you are looking for something different to break away from the usual spots and the maddening crowd this weekend, here are some of our favourite under-the-radar wine bars in the city.
1. La Bottega Del Vino
Piazza Lega Lombarda 1
A name that simply translates into 'the wine store' - there are a few venues with the same name in different parts of Milan but the one that we are referring to here is the iconic bar overlooking Parco Sempione. Extremely cosy with knowledgeable staff who are ready to 'coravin' select bottles for you try. There's a dining section available but the cantina is where we want to be.
2. Vinello a Milano
Piazza Gambara 4
A hip and vibrant joint featuring organic and natural wines, we love this place for its neighbourhood vibes and also its ability to pick out the best of the organic/natural variants (read: does not smell like cow shit). They also do vini sfusi style - buying in bottles from the tank but the experience is best when discussing the latest glass with the owners and the staff.
3. Bottiglieria Bulloni
Via Lipari 2
Opened in 1933, this place has a special place in our hearts. This is probably the only place we would buy Italian wines for when we are hosting dinner parties at home for its carefully handpicked selections of wineries - some so niche that even the seasoned wine lovers might not have picked up or had the opportunity to try. Their seasonally changing canapes for aperitivo are worth skipping dinner for.