TrendsSMW Milan food & wine: are we too italo-centric?

Giulia Baroni8 years ago9 min


We’ve seen how this edition of the Milan Social Media Week hosts a panels dedicated to food and wine. Two were the topics of this Thursday morning: “Social Eating: food is still conviviality?” and “How local promotion helps discovering products”. Two meetings that highlighted how food is now essential and how everything related to it, online and offline, is linked to three principles: sustainability, digital and local promotion.

  • Environmental sustainability that becomes also cultural end economical. Culinary tourism is more sustainable, even economically speaking because is the richest.
  • Digital, that influences the culinary tourism of now a day, because without a digital marketing and branding strategy, bot a product and a place will never be known.
  • Promotion, especially the local one that helps discovering products and vice versa. Often, products are the ones sponsoring the territory! Examples? Barolo, Parmiggiano Reggiano, Vignola cherries, Parma’s prosciutto…products are associated to a place. To know them we have to travel.


“Guess who’s coming to dinner”? perfect strangers. This is VizEat’s motto summarized. Who travels knows well that to know a place is also and especially to know and try the culinary arts. And the best way to do it is by going at home of someone who lives in that place, that knows the culture and traditions. A simple idea: “open our home to travelers, to chat and discuss offline in front of a rich plate full of local traditions”.

Potluck is similar. A new concept of community gathering and social eating, where people meet to create their table and dinner, together with designers, photographers, food and wine experts.

“Simple things that can relax people, that they could bring home and do it themselves” that’s how Sibilla Milani, part of the PotLuck team sees it.

“You know people, you share passions and create new opportunities. A real sharing economy that produces incomes”. Two examples that, unfortunately, tell us something predictable: we are not willing to know what differs from our traditions, maybe because we are convinced that there’s nothing better than Italy in the world. when we talk about opening the doors of our home, to make others understand and try our traditions, then we are the firsts, because we are Italians, what else?


Base Milano

But talking about Italy is too much, because what’s evident is that Italy is something, Milan something else. And if it is true that it’s easier to build and organize a startup and organize in Milan, we can say that us, Italians and milanesi, are also in a world that is everyday more and more connected. Online and offline. Because it’s clear, it’s ok to be friends on Facebook, appreciate pics on Instagram and exchange chitchats on Twitter, but sitting down on the table and sharing a meal and words is something else. And while this morning I was listening to people talking, I was thinking: how can you be so Italo-centric and / or Milan-centric if we are talking about dinners in Paris among Germans, Indians and Argentinians? How can it be so – since there’s an obliged passage right now between online and offline– if the reality we have in front of ourselves is a mixture of genres and people interacting? Maybe Milan can be more cosmopolitan, but I was expecting something different from this Social Media Week, from this international event. Something less focused on saving the Country and more centered on acting: transforming Italy in a startup projected towards a market that is more and more international. Of course, starting from food.

Giulia Baroni

Vivo in una nube, non solo come scelta digitale ma anche come scelta di vita. A volte torno sulla terra e adoro realizzare che viviamo in un mondo globalizzato, ecco perché sono sempre curiosa e pronta ad imparare da culture differenti. Vivi per imparare ed impara per vivere.

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