Pasta and Milan, it’s a match made in heaven; this cosmopolitan metropolis in the heart of Lombardy may be raw around the edges and take some time to develop an affection for, but their skill in crafting tasty pasta is undeniable.

From loaded ravioli al-dente style to imported Roman classics like carbonara, of which the Milanese claim their version is better than the original, dining in one of the pasta restaurants in Milan should be on everyone’s bucket list.

One of the main highlights of my Eating Europe Milan food tours is the stops we make at some of the city’s top pasta restaurants. After years of operating culinary excursions in this city in Northern Italy, here are my must-visit eateries specializing in fresh pasta!

Pasta d’Autore

pasta_d'Autore_pasta_restaurant_milan

Photo credit: Pasta d’Autore

If you’re around Corso di Porta Ticinese and after a true authentic pasta dining experience, you shouldn’t be looking anywhere else other than Pasta d’Autore.

Instead of visiting the standard trattorias and osterias, get yourself down to Pasta d’Autore to enjoy their cool concept; you choose the shape of your pasta and the type of sauce you want, and let the flavors flow! It’s rare to find somewhere like this in the city, so take advantage of it while you can.

For me, as long as the Italian food is good somewhere, I don’t care too much about the setting, but the rustic charm at Pasta d’Autore made from a bricked interior, wooden settings, and fabulous paintings across the back wall are a bonus.

While I’m sure you’ll go for your typical favorite pasta and sauce combo when you come here, I can vouch for the pesto with the fusilli. The presentation was so lovely with the little basil leaf on top, but the flavors are the real talking point.

Hearty and chewy with a garlicky and nutty fusion, this selection was everything I could have wanted. When I sprinkled some parmesan on top, it melted instantly and oozed into each piece of spiraling fusilli, giving it a creamy tinge.

Pasta d’Autore (€€€)Corso di Porta Ticinese, 16, 20123 Milano MI, Italy – Closed Monday and every other day, 12:00 pm to 3:00 pm and 7:00 pm to 11:00 pm

Via Pasteria – Corso Italia

via_pasteria_corso_italia_restaurant_milan

Photo credit: Via Pasteria – Corso Italia

A casual Italian restaurant serving the best food with a modern twist in Corso Italia, Via Pasteria is a breath of fresh air when I want something quick and tasty.

You better bring your sunglasses when you come here because this place is bright yellow, it even hurts my eyes sometimes. But it’s ultra cute, with the wooden shelves sprawling across the back walls filled with fine wines and potted plants in all corners of the building.

Since I’ve been living in Rome for many years now, I can’t control the urge to order some classic pasta dishes from the cuisine down there whenever I go to another city. On my last visit to Via Pasteria, I did just that and went for the macaroni carbonara!

I was given the option to choose between a regular and a large portion size. I got the large; it was too much, but the flavors were tantalizing; it came to around 200g of pasta soaked in a creamy carbonara sauce with a peppery kick and tossed in seasoned bacon, giving it a smoky edge. 

Via Pasteria – Corso Italia (€€) – Corso Italia, 16, 20122 Milano MI, Italy – Open every day, 12:00 pm to 10:00 pm

Pasta Fresca Da Giovanni

pasta_fresca_da_giovanni_pasta_restaurant_milan

Photo credit: Pasta Fresca Da Giovanni

Pasta Fresca Da Giovanni near the Parco di Corso San Gottardo is one of the lesser-known picks on this list, but that contributes to its appeal: no crowds, quick service, and staff that are happy to see you, some of the things you’re happy to experience in a touristy city like Milan.

What looked like the front of an old garage with big black steel doors initially to me was actually a charming hideaway beyond the facade. The white-hued wooden seats, twinkling garden lights, and the little gap between the wall where you could see the chef cooking were what caught my eye.

After a quick scan of the menu, it seemed only right to order the tagliolini with tomato sauce and burratina. I hadn’t had burrata in so long, and with how good this version tasted, it was totally worth the wait. 

The burratina was drizzled on the pasta like a little mountain, and it burst with tanginess and richness; the center added a delightful milky touch to the sweetness of the tomato sauce that the pasta was tossed in.

Pasta Fresca Da Giovanni (€€)Via Ascanio Sforza, 31, 20136 Milano MI, Italy – Closed Sunday and Tuesday, and open Monday, Wednesday, and Thursday, 12:00 pm to 2:30 pm, and Friday and Saturday, 12:00 pm to 2:30 pm and 6:00 pm to 9:00 pm

Fresca Pasta Club

fresca_pasta_club_in_milan

Photo credit: Fresca Pasta Club

Out by the Porta Venezia is the amazing Fresca Pasta Club, another one of the best restaurants for delicious Milanese dishes that all pasta lovers should have on their radar.

You could describe the Fresca Pasta Club as a trendy bistro for its wacky-colored interiors, hip craft beer menu, and obscure artistic designs throughout the building. However, the pasta served here is something to ride home about, especially considering the price.

Many dishes here appealed to me, like the cacio e pepe and the gnocchi, but the sound of the tagliatelle al ragù bolognese sounded up my street.

Whipped up with the highest quality ingredients, the pasta was served in a giant steel bowl that would normally be used for cooking something on a hob. 

I remember describing the flavors to my buddy I was dining with: the pieces of tagliatelle were quite long, which soaked up the beefy, oniony, umami-flavored sauce. Thinking back, I’d say it was quite rich, but it was a perfect combination between the sauce and tagliatelle.

Fresca Pasta Club (€€)Viale Piave, 33, 20129 Milano MI, Italy – Open every day, 12:00 pm to 11:00 pm

The FisherMan Pasta

the_fisherman_pasta_restaurant_milan

Photo credit: The FisherMan Pasta

I couldn’t stop raving about the FisherMan Pasta close to Piccolo Teatro Strehler. If you get an irresistible craving for seafood regularly like me, this Milan restaurant blends the goods from the ocean with pasta!

The indoor area of this spot is pretty standard, with a couple of settings, bright and airy, but the outside patio is where all the action is. Everyone’s competing for a seat out there, especially when the weather is good during summertime.

Seeing my order of black cuttlefish spaghetti and courgettes come out to the table in a bucket was a sight to behold; it sure did add to the authenticity of dining here.

Every forkful of this dish was a delight; the black cuttlefish added a subtle briny flavor, mingling perfectly with the mild earthiness of the courgettes. I could tell they were cooked in some herbs with a light pepperiness, adding to the dish’s overall complexity.

The FisherMan Pasta (€€) – Corso Garibaldi, 12, 20121 Milano MI, Italy – Open every day, 12:00 pm to 11:30 pm

Conclusion

When you’ve had your fair share of ossobuco and cotoletta, you can hit up one of these fantastic pasta restaurants in Milan. This northern Italian city is a hub for foodies who want to squash their hankering for a fine-cooked bowl of al dente pasta.

It can be easy to get lost in the plethora of touristy pasta restaurants around the more popular areas of the Navigli, but if you head just a couple of more blocks away, you’re bound to find some better local haunts serving fantastic pasta dishes from the Italian cuisine.



We have a really, really good newsletter

Join over 100,000 food travel experts. Subscription is free.