The sbagliato: 3 of my favorite Milanese mistakes

Sbagliato is the Italian word for “mistaken” or “wrong”. Sometimes, as in the case of the Oops! I Dropped the Lemon Tart dessert at Osteria Francescana and–as legend has it–the tarte Tatin and chocolate truffles, a mistake can pave the way for innovation! In fact, some creatives might even make–as oxymoronic as this sounds–deliberate mistakes to shake things up.

Below are three sbagliati you can find in my beloved Milan. Cocktail cognoscenti: I’m sure you know exactly where I’m going to start!

1. The Negroni Sbagliato

Probably the most famous sbagliato of them all! Born at the iconic Bar Basso in 1972 thanks to a serendipitous slip of barman Mirko Stocchetto’s hand. When mixing a Negroni, he mistakenly poured Prosecco instead of gin, and the Negroni Sbagliato was born. This Prosecco, Campari, and Vermouth libation made history! Not only did the cocktail become world famous, but it has inspired subsequent generations of mixologists to create their own riffs on this new classic.

Bar Basso Negroni Sbagliato Milanese mistakes
Photo: Bar Basso

2. Margherita Sbagliata

At Identità Golose Milano, the gastronomic juggernaut’s new gastronomic hub, you can find Franco Pepe’s Margherita Sbagliata, a playful take on a classic Margherita. Pepe is the pizzaiolo of the world-renowned Pepe in Grani in Caiazzo, considered Italy’s best pizzeria. Pepe himself personally instructed resident pizzaiolo Gabriele Tangari in the art of margheritasbagliata-making. PDO buffalo mozzarella, purée of riccio heirloom tomatoes, basil reduction and olive oil top the pie. Yum.

Identita Golose Mllano Margarita Sbagliata Franco Pepe Milanese mistakes
Photo: OnStageStudio

3. Cotoletta sbagliata

The Cotoletta alla Milanese is a staple of Milanese cuisine, a milk-fed veal rib partially on the bone that has been breaded and fried in clarified butter. However, at Taglio and Anche you’ll find a cotoletta sbagliata with pork. To clarify, that does not automatically make it Schnitzel, which is often made with pork as it’s prepared just a tad bit differently. (Speaking of schnitzel–Vienna, how I love thee!) Chef Carlo Cracco also does a version where he separates the veal from the breading.

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