Here in the little village of Parzano, just a few kilometres from Como, the structure and style of the interiors typical of the nineteen seventies have remained unchanged. Wooden tables and chairs, minimal table arrangements and vintage furniture provide the setting for simple but tasty meals in a cosy and homely atmosphere. Running the kitchen is Danilo, who has owned the restaurant for the past seven years together with his partner Anita who is charge of the dining room and, with Federico, welcomes the customers.
Danilo and his assistant Ibrahim offer a cuisine linked to the landscape of the local area, updated daily through their continuous search for best products, bringing only selected cheeses, cured meats and vegetables to the tables. Signature dishes that are always on the menu at Trattoria San Biagio include 'Scottatini di Cuore', skewers of marinated beef heart, much enjoyed by grown-ups and children alike, and the two great classics of the area, the polenta uncia and busecca, a traditional Milanese dish made with tripe, beans, tomato puree, carrots and celery.
The menu is equally influenced by the culinary tradition of Lombardy and regional Italy, sometimes combined with international dishes. “We have fun experimenting and creating fusion recipes from Brianza with dishes from around Italy and internationally, using products from the region and according to season. Lasagne, for example, is a Sunday lunch classic, while the quinto quarto offal in waste-saving dishes can always be found on the menu”, Danilo informs us. The wine list is constantly being updated and artisanal wineries and small vintners are favoured, with high quality always being the sine qua non. “We try to get to know them all personally on our trips out of town and they are mostly vineyards that are part of the organic wine scene”, the owner adds.
As well as the indoor space there is an outdoor area where guests can relax and enjoy the atmosphere of times gone by, a sense reinforced by the centuries-old walls. The trattoria is often enlivened by exhibitions of emerging and experimental artists, and folk and punk concerts, while on evenings without musicians, the record player is always on playing vinyls from Danilo's own collection. The most loyal customers, as well as new patrons who are invariably pleasantly surprised by the informal atmosphere and the warmth of the service, can buy the shoppers and T-shirts signed "San Bias" with original graphics by Danilo and Anita with the help of two talented associates of theirs Roberto Anzani and Agota Iukytè.
Just a few minutes away by bike or on foot, visitors can stroll through the Brianza moorland to the shores of the picturesque lakes of Alserio and Montorfano, or take a path into the mountains towards Monte Bollettone.