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Embrace the Italian Apericena Dining Ritual

What is apericena, and why should you care? #YallaEats tries one of Italy’s most treasured rituals at Café Milano, and you might just want to try it too!

Throughout Italy, there is a leisurely dining ritual that offers bang for your buck called Apericena, and it can be found at Café Milano in the Four Seasons Abu Dhabi every Wednesday from 5-8pm. Not surprisingly, it’s very popular with Al Maryah Island’s many urban professionals.

Apericena’s are long leisurely affairs undertaken with friends in early or late evening often just after work or before you hit the town.

The food is usually delightful and satisfying and, most importantly, affordable if you are looking for a meal that doesn’t break the bank.

Usually, all you need to do is buy a drink and your food is free. Café Milano’s concept is a little different but still affordable, and #YallaEats promptly agreed to give it a go.

From the very first interaction you have with the largely Italian staff, you can tell this evening holds the promise of a fun with incredible food, a great soundtrack by the resident DJ, and the Four Season’s unparalleled city skyline views. With the tempting buy one get one free offer on drinks and the selection of specialty bites changing every week, Cafe Milano is the must-visit venue for those looking light bites and great atmosphere.

So, how does one ‘Apericena’? Here’s how.  Yalla will answer any questions that you might have.

Apericena? Is that the same thing as an aperitivo?
A standard pre-dinner drink becomes an aperitivo when it is accompanied by more than just nuts or crisps, such as a small starter. You know you’re at an apericena though, when your drink is accompanied by a light dinner. Though this might not be enough food for some to consider it a meal, it was just enough to leave lightly full and happy.

I’d really love to eat at the Four Seasons, but I don’t think I can afford it.
Apericena is only AED90 so is reasonably priced. So, how do you start? You start by ordering a drink.

What should I drink?
For a traditional aperitivo, a light (often dry) beverage is typically enjoyed, but anything goes. Just remember that it accompanies food, so excessively sweet or creamy drinks might be too filling. At Café Milano, beverages are buy one, get one, so this is a great deal.

What will I eat?
This will vary from week-to-week at Café Milano, but you can typically expect light Italian bites. The ‘Apericena Tower’ that we sampled had a tasty chargrilled burger, ravioli, seafood salad, bruschetta, arancini, and calamari.

The Verdict
Whether you are one a budget or not, you can’t beat this light meal. In order to simply enjoy views such as this, you usually pay quite a bit more in this city, so Yalla suggests you try this out for the evening views alone and consider the lovely light bites and beverage special a bonus.

AED90 per person for the Apericena Tower. For reservations, please contact +971 233 32630 or email



971 233 32630
Four Seasons Abu Dhabi

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