For lovers of rare cocktail blends, the Porta Venezia area is like a sky full of stars. In the streets of this beautiful and lively neighborhood endless aperitifs are consumed every day, movement is everywhere, and the outdoor tables are on every corner. Of all these stars one shines with a light like no other. We are talking about Kilburn Cocktail Bar, a project born under the sign of the great British tradition and under the ascendant of the Milanese style.
Like some pubs in historic London, the restaurant is located on the corner of two streets, its large windows creating a light space that seems to have come out of a photograph, like the many hanging on the walls here. Above and behind the counter, along door jambs and even on the tables, rows of bottles decorate the interior. Tables are low, chairs are vintage, and space is large. The feeling you get while sitting down is of having space and comfort, almost like in your own living room.
Let’s look through the menu that is brought to us. After a short presentation of the venue and its aesthetics, we are immediately faced with the centerpiece of the place. The cocktails of the house, though not omitting on the classics, are original and elegant. A strong smell of spirits is muted by exotic fruit syrups, vermouth, and champagne. Some of these, such as Summer Adventure or The Sinner, mix pineapple and mango with a pungent note of Tabasco. Some, however, are light and fruity, such as Deep Melon while, while others still look simple and light at first, subsequently revealing a complex flavor.
Among the classics, these are the top three. Bloody Mary, made adhering to the authentic London tradition; Espresso Martini, with an unexpected mix of Stolichnaya vodka and kahlúa, and an indispensable and often ignored must try Dark and Stormy, with Carribean flavored Gosling rum and a lime aftertaste. A perfect drink for the Milanese summer, regardless of whether it is hot or rainy.
The offer is not limited to drinks (which also include wines and beers by the Lambrate Brewery), extending to food. All Kilburn dishes are created with the great Italian tradition in mind: among the firsts and seconds, we particularly advise lasagna with vegetables and shrimp, and grilled salmon. But the best comes with aperitifs. The cold cuts include some of the best Italian products: prosciutto cotto di San Marino, porcini mushrooms cooked in olive oil, parsley, and garlic, coppa di Val Tidone, pancetta from Piacenza and much more.
The presence and the taste of Ennio, the owner and mixologist, are felt in everything: from the furnishings to the table layout, from the framed photos to the menus. Kilburn is elegant without ever seeming cold. With its dark walls, antique furniture, and discreet decor which is never overwhelming, it keeps the familiarity inherited from the English pubs, refined by the spirit of Milan to satisfy even the most demanding of customers. It’s hard to find a place like Kilburn in Porta Venezia… Still not convinced? Try it!