(Updated: 5 October 2018)
Going out to the best breakfast places in Milan has become a genuine treat for me. I’ve adapted to Italian-style breakfast pretty darn well if I do say so myself. However, I’m so set in my work routine that savoring a genuine Italian breakfast every day is no longer in the cards for me. My “Italian” breakfast now
more often than not consists of coffee made by own Moka (I’m dying for a Nespresso machine!) now always consists of Nespresso and some sweets, like Madeleines or muffins baked by yours truly. But when I can get out to start the day on a sweet note, I love several breakfast places in Milan.
On Sauce Milan, we shared some of Milan’s best breakfast places and I agree with them all (Pavé, Sissi, Marotin and Taglio), but there are some others that have stolen my heart. Here, in no particular order, are eight of my personal favorite of the best breakfast places in Milan.
1. Pavé: Not to be redundant, but I just love Pavé so much and breakfast here is the ultimate treat. I stand by all of Sauce Milan’s picks, but this is the only one I’m going to re-iterate. Pavé and I first met in February 2013, and it had me from my first Centosessanta (a brioche with 160 grams of apricot marmellata inside). Having breakfast at Pavé so I could consume a centosessanta held a permanent slot on my Milan to-do list for every subsequent visit. Sadly, although I now call Milan home, I can’t make it to Pavé for breakfast as regularly as I would like, but I think this scarcity makes the entire Pavé Italian breakfast experience even more special as I don’t take a single bite for granted. My other favorite breakfast pastry of note is La Rossa, a centosessanta with raspberry jam and topped with raspberry streusel. Both are pictured above. Beyond the brioches, pretty much every single baked item is amazing here. It’s seriously one of Milan’s best pastry shops. It doesn’t have that “old school Italy” feel as the space is super contemporary and looks like it can be anywhere in the world, but that doesn’t mean I love it any less. For lunch, they offer sandwiches and salads, and they do a lovely aperitivo in the evening. (Via Felice Casati, 27; + 39 02 9439 2259; website; closed Monday)
2. Pasticceria Marchesi (the original one): Also included as one of Sauce Milan’s best pastry shops, the original location of Pasticceria Marchesi holds a special place in my heart. During my first visit to Milan in 2012, a friend had advised me to pick up some cookies here, and I’ve been hooked ever since. Sure, you can have some cookies for breakfast, but their brioches are yummy, too. What I love so much about the original Pasticceria Marchesi location in Milan is that it dates back to 1824. Many of the original adornments and furnishings are still intact, and the same family does the baking! In some ways, it does feel like stepping back in time to “old Milan”. However, despite being acquired by Prada and the inauguration of two new fancier locations (one on Montenapoleone and one in the Galleria), the original Milan location hasn’t lost its charm or quality. And the staff are pleasant! Eating and drinking here is standing room only as it doesn’t have a proper seating area like the newer ones, but that’s part of the pastry shop’s tradition. (Via Santa Maria alla Porta, 11a; +39 02.862770; website; open 7 days)
3. Pasticceria Cucchi: Having opened in 1936, Pasticceria Cucchi is beyond adorable and feels a little different than Milan’s other pastry shops, perhaps because it opened as a “caffè concerto” that specialized in live entertainment in addition to confections. The extensive outdoor seating feels a little like Paris to me, and you just want to linger outside and people watch there on Corso Genova’s starting point for hours. The super old school ambiance is just glorious and reminds me a bit of Paris. Once again: Old Milan! (Corso Genova, 1; + 39 02 8940 9793 website; closed Monday)
4. Pasticceria Martesana: Davide Comaschi’s dreamy pastry and chocolate shop in Northern Milan was always a bit of a schlep, but with the opening of an outpost on Via Paolo Sarpi in Chinatown, I’m able to treat myself to one his brioches for breakfast a little more regularly, usually on a weekend. The location isn’t as grand and spacious as the original, but if his confections are more easily accessible for me, then who am I to complain? Fun Fact: Comaschi won the 2013 World Chocolate Masters, a chocolate competition that takes place in Paris every other year. (Via Paolo Sarpi, 64; + 39 02 9926 5069; website; open daily)
5. Caffè Ambrosiano: I’ve been living in my neighborhood for almost two years, and had become such a creature of habit that I didn’t happen upon this cafe, pastry shop and torrefazioni (coffee roaster) until about six months ago by chance when I randomly decided to re-route my morning routine. They have an abundant selection of pastries and brioche and finding a breakfast place close to my Milan home that puts forth a decent cappuccino felt like hitting the jackpot…I can now full on savor and enjoy a real Italian breakfast just footsteps from my building. You can take your breakfast standing at the bar of course, but if you want to sit and eat, you have to do table service. They also have a covered outdoor seating area. (Via Mac Mahon, 16; + 39 02 3823 1089; website; open 7 days)
6. Macha Cafe: This recently opened Japanese cafe dedicated to the world’s most popular green tea has a slightly unconventionally Italian breakfast, but is worth checking out as this really is one of the best breakfast places in Milan. You’ll find matcha-flavored baked goods (which are semi-Italian, i.e. mtacha brioche) plus a selection of avocado toasts and pancakes. To drink, there’s matcha tea of course, as well as a matcha-flavored latte, cappuccino and more. In the evening, you can swing by for an aperitivo to sip on a Macha Mule, Macha Spitz, Macha Mojito and more. I know it might seem like matcha overkill, but the very well executed concept means you won’t leave there feeling all matcha’d out. You can enjoy an unconventional Italian style breakfast or a typical matcha-centric breakfast/brunch. (Viale Francesco Crispi, 15; +39 02 4547 3046; website; open 7 days)
7. Piccolo Peck: This recent cafe addition to iconic gourmet shop Peck is doing breakfast right! Read more about it here. It’s a great way to fuel up for a day exploring the historic center! (Via Spadari 9;+39 02 80 23 161; website)
8. I Dolci Namura
As of September 2018, this has been my newest neighborhood go-to place. I love, love, love the matcha cappucinos. You can read more about why I love this place here.