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The 5 best bars in Milan for aperitivo

Of the many things we can envy the Italians, the century-old ritual of aperitivo, or pre-dinner drinks accompanied by delicious…

Of the many things we can envy the Italians, the century-old ritual of aperitivo, or pre-dinner drinks accompanied by delicious antipasti, is right near the top of the list. And while this tradition is enjoyed all over Italy, Milan is probably the place that does it best.

The birthplace of Campari, the OG aperitif, this is where the craze got its start back in the early 1920s. Today, as the country’s epicenter of fashion and design, Milan is still where you can find the aperitivo scene at its most vibrant, with excellent people-watching always on the menu.

Here our top 5 picks.

Bar Basso

A local institution and the place where the Negroni Sbagliato was invented (by accident), Bar Basso is pretty much the place to grab a cocktail when it’s time for aperitivo. This chic yet laid back meeting spot for creative folks is very big with the designer crowd visiting for Salone di Mobile.

Rita & Cocktails

Located in the photogenic Navigli canal district, Rita & Cocktails is all about fresh, creative ingredients, a wide choice of quality spirits, and original flavor combinations by skilled bartenders. The food offer is ever-changing and never disappoints.

Dry

We love the concept behind this stylish venue. Meticulously crafted cocktails and mouthwatering pizzas by a Michelin-starred chef? Sign us up. The bar draws young late-night crowd of cool artist types and fashionistas, perfect to get yourself right into that Milan atmosphere.

Radetzky

This one has been a favorite for aperitivo hour since opening in the late 1980s. You’ll be surrounded by a happy mix of local creatives and travelers of all ages — and if you’re lucky, you might even spot a a celebrity or two.

N’Ombra de Vin

Wine lovers, rejoice. This atmospheric wine shop — one of the best in town — hosts a bar and a gourmet bistro in a well-preserved 16th-century refectory of the Agostinian Friars next to the Basilica of San Marco. The place is beautifully decorated and draws a distinctly higher-end crowd.

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