Speaking of Milan (pronounced Mylan) straw hats as we were yesterday, straw hat season will be upon us before we know it and Chicago's Optimo Hats for a change has a reasonable inventory of high quality natural colored Milan braided straw. The company will turn some of that straw into a gentleman's hat in three weeks for about $400.
Now I am not a hat expert but I have been around a bit and, so far as I am able to tell, the United States makes the best hats in the world (perhaps the only article of clothing where the country holds that estimable position). Within the United States, Optimo is arguably the best bespoke hat maker, and they are without a doubt the best source I have found for authentic Milans.
The Asian version of the better known and more fragile Monticristis of Ecuador, the sporty Milan's straw originates in a single village in China. The material gives the Milan a soft golden glow that has kept it in demand -- I had tried unsuccessfully to obtain one last year and the year before --for more than a hundred years. That glow may be had in the same shapes as the Monticristi.
They are a fine summer hat for the man who wants something just a little different.