My beer journey/research officially started when I went to Milan to study for my junior year spring semester. Thanks to RateBeer’s site I was able to locate local brewpubs and beer stores in my area as well as when traveling outside Milan. Here we go.
A Tutta Birra: I was alerted to its existence by my mother who saved a New York Times article about the burgeoning craft brew industry in Italy. I even got to meet the lovely proprietor who helped me select some serious life-changing beer. Take a closer look at the bottom left corner, Duff beer lives outside The Simpsons!
Roybeer: Very cool and small beer/homebrewing store in Milan. The owner was incredibly helpful when I asked about his favorite Italian craft brews and insisted that I sit behind his desk for a photo-op. Milan gets a rep for being a cold, industrial, ego-centric, fashion obsessed city but in my dealings with people on a daily basis in Milan proved the opposite. This fact was no less obvious when I walked into Roybeer.
One of the aspects of Italy I miss the most back here in the States is the idea of letting a customer peruse your store without pestering them. In the States we are assailed by customer service and we are taught this is a good thing. I beg to differ. I truly appreciated that the owner welcomed me with “buongiorno”, then let me walk around until I came to him with questions and the outpouring of help ensued.