La Balera dell’Ortica is the perfect spot in Milan to celebrate your birthday while singing your night away to the best Italian and international songs from the past decades, the way your grandparents would have.
Ortica once was like a small village in the suburbs of Milan; nowadays it is a vibrant district that pays homage to the famous artists that lived or worked in the area through a few colourful graffiti around the area – among them the brilliant Milanese songwriter Enzo Jannacci or Nobel Prize for Literature Dario Fo.
La Balera is both a trattoria and a typical old-style dancing hall, that is a very down to earth get-together spot with long wooden tables, unassuming mise en place and a very traditional feeling. Everything about a night out at the Balera sounds very familiar to the Italian people indeed: the abundant traditional food, such as arrosticini and polpette, the small band that plays popular music and game of bocce too.
I would recommend to book way ahead of time and get ready to learn how to “far festa” the Italian way. In order to do that you will have to gather a few friends and expect to embarrass yourself on the stage for karaoke or dancing like a goofball at some point. Don’t take yourself too seriously, wear something funny and get that vibe going: the most memorable nights are always the ones that start with a bunch of friends having a big laugh around a table!