As I sort though all my travel memories to decide which ones to share with you, they’re basically all related to food. I defy anyone to go to Italy and pass any moment of the day with an empty stomach. It just wont happen. Mostly because of places like Eataly.
Eataly is everything you want in Italian food under one roof. The three level building combines a bookstore and cookware shop with myriad dining counters, a deli, bakery, fishmonger, grocer, olive oil dispensary and many, many more culinary delights! We were too late for lunch here but stopped by to pick up a few things for a casual dinner before going to the opera that night. Actually, considering the time we spent wandering through the store, its quite amazing that we made it to the opera at all. Let me walk you through some of the highlights…
First you can buy all the flour to make your pasta, breads and Italian sweets
Then you fall into a trance while staring at the mesmerising display of chocolate and caramel sauces
Until you hear the siren call of the chocolate hazelnut spreads (think super fancy Nutella)
Then you might try to break yourself out of your sugar coma by visiting the bread counter
(they also sell offcuts of loafs used at the sandwich bar earlier in the day if you don’t want a whole loaf)
Only to be sucked back in by the hypnotic sway of the hanging legs of prosciutto
A little bit of cheese makes a more balanced meal
Oops… did I say ‘a little’? How about a whole fridge full?
Berlin, eat your heart out.
And by now you’ve decided that you can’t be bothered to make your own pasta
So you buy some fresh pasta from this counter
Don’t think you’re getting out without a bottle of freshly decanted olive oil
Seriously, Italy, well played.
Walking through Eataly was like disappearing down the rabbit hole. The delicious and mesmerising rabbit hole. We must have spent hours there annoying the poor workers who were trying to restock from the lunch crowd to prepare for the deluge of diners that would inevitably descend in the evening. It took all my strength not to fill my suitcase with jars of olives, chocolate spread, oil and try to sneak in a few cheeses. Surely customs couldn’t begrudge a girl a leg of authentic Italian prosciutto bigger than her head? Surely!
But instead we satisfied ourselves with a hotel-room picnic dinner of bread, crackers, cured meats, cheeses and tapenade.
And I bought the world’s tiniest bag of pasta.
No, its a magnet. But it is actually filled with real pasta.
Dear Eataly, I love you and i’m coming back. I promise.
Address: Piazza XXV Aprile, 10, 20121 Milan, Italy
Nearest Metro: Garibaldi
Opening Hours: 10am-midnight