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Rye Il Ponticello: Master of Malt

Here’s something for the whiskey lovers! Rye Il Ponticello (the former VIP/smoking lounge) held another round of its Master of Malt Whiskey Tasting Series last week and Kap & I were so excited to have been a part of it.

You may not know it -and it certainly doesn’t show (you’d think I’ve been partying all day, partying all night), but I bloomed late. I never did any of the stuff kids now do. Legal or otherwise. I led the sheltered life of a monk even after Kap & I married (well except for SOME parts *wink*). It’s only in my twilight years that I am getting to enjoy life & learn a few things. And I see have been missing out on quite a lot.

Well, it’s never too late for old dogs to learn a couple of new tricks like our previous wine tasting. And now, we have graduated on to the harder stuff.. Whiskey!

Kap & I learned the basics of whiskey appreciation while sipping our featured Glenlivet malts with whiskey aficionado Adrian Tecson.


With 2 of the 3 partners, (L) RENREN REYES & (Rightmost) STEVE MAGDARAOG – managing partner. Adrian Tecson, and the Bossman who invited us along. <3 The 3rd partner, Fro Oliva, is regrettably not in the photo.



Rye IL Ponticello

2/F Antel Corporate Center, 121 Valero St. Salcedo Village, Makati (02) 553-9971 ; (63949) 760-8731



Look for the ANTEL building. RYE IL PONTICELLO is on the 2nd floor. There’s ample parking space right across. Il Ponticello is Italian for “the little bridge.”



Great nights out start at Rye Il Ponticello. Walk up the nostalgic stairs into hang-out heaven.




Sink into hug-me-all-night lounge seats and revel in DJ-spinning beats. Dig in and graze through Ponti’s latest Italian greats – Crema di Tartufo pasta, Five-cheese pizza, Spicy Pork Belly Arrabiata and the signature White Pizza – Gorgonzola cream with Parma Ham and Arugula. End the treat with rave-worthy Cheesecake Panna Cotta, as-authentic-as-you-can-get Tiramisu, and must-try Vesuvius Budino chocolate lava cake. Then buzz up the rest of the night with fun, fresh cocktails or dizzy yourself with the vast selection of wines and spirits. Take it how you want it. At Rye Il Ponticello, it’s always a good time.



Designed by IMEE, wife of Steve, the interiors are reminiscent of a “Gentlemen’s Club” but modern, not even bordering on stuffy. It says.. DISTINGUISHED. Until you’ve had your 5th drink that is! ;P



The early birds get the worm. Or in this case, the bastard! ;)) Lovelynne of EN ROUTE & I get to share this yummy SPICY BASTARD. Flaming. A MUST HAVE. <3 It has strong hints of pineapple & coconuts under all that whiskey mixed in. Perfect for this summer season when you just wanna hit the beach!



Oh yeah. Girls just wanna have fun! ;)


Il Ponitcello has re-opened under new management and a new culinary team as well headed by Chef Panky Lopez. I am so excited to try what new & delicious dishes he has whipped up. But that’s for next month when the Bossman scheduled my “food tasting”. For now, I simply have to be content with these teasers & dream of what I’ll be having soon. *patience dear donkey*



Ale-battered Skillet Fries covered in meat chili, spicy hot jalapeño peppers and a huge dollop of Ponti’s special homemade cheese sauce.



Seared Spiced Tuna Loin 490 php. Perfectly seared & spiced, this has got to be my top pick! <3



Prawn Gambas 460 php. Can you see those giant glistening succulent prawns? LOVE!



Dry-Cured Roasted Bacon Slab 420 php. Seared and roasted 14-day dry-cured, hang-dried, whole roasted Bacon Slab, with mustard and caramelized onion compote.



Whiskey 101

Whisky or whiskey (spelled depending on the region) is a type of distilled alcoholic beverage made from fermented grain mash. Various grains (which may be malted) are used for different varieties, including barley, corn (maize), rye, and wheat. Whisky is typically aged in wooden casks, generally made of charred white oak.

Whiskies do not mature in the bottle, only in the cask, so the age of a whisky is only the time between distillation and bottling. This reflects how much the cask has interacted with the whisky, changing its chemical makeup and taste. Whiskies that have been bottled for many years may have a rarity value, but are not older and not necessarily better than a more recent whisky that matured in wood for a similar time. After a decade or two, additional aging in a barrel does not necessarily improve a whisky.





Most whiskies are sold at or near an alcoholic strength of 40% abc (alcohol by volume), which is the statutory minimum in some countries -although the strength can vary, and cask-strength whisky may have as much as twice that alcohol percentage.

Types of Whiskey

Whiskey or whiskey-like products are produced in most grain-growing areas. They differ in base product, alcoholic content, and quality.

  • Malt whisky is made primarily from malted barley.
  • Grain whisky is made from any type of grains.

Malts and grains are combined in various ways:

  • Single malt whisky is whisky from a single distillery made from a mash that uses only one particular malted grain. Unless the whisky is described as single-cask, it contains whisky from many casks, and different years, so the blender can achieve a taste recognisable as typical of the distillery. In most cases, single malts bear the name of the distillery, with an age statement and perhaps some indication of some special treatments such as maturation in a port wine cask.
  • Blended malt whisky is a mixture of single malt whiskies from different distilleries. If a whisky is labelled “pure malt” or just “malt” it is almost certainly a blended malt whisky. This was formerly called a “vatted malt” whisky.
  • Blended whisky is made from a mixture of different types of whisky. A blend may contain whisky from many distilleries so that the blender can produce a flavor consistent with the brand. The brand name may, therefore, omit the name of a distillery. Most Scotch, Irish and Canadian whisky is sold as part of a blend, even when the spirits are the product of one distillery, as is common in Canada. American blended whisky may contain neutral spirits.


With Ray Reyes of En Route. The KTG’s notorious drinker. Look at how he deftly swipes a bottle into his beautiful wife’s waiting bag. HAHAHA! Lol-jk!



My first time to try whiskey. I was scared at first, anxious that it may burn my throat. It didn’t. A bit strong for my liking though. Definitely a man’s drink through & through. I’ll stick with wine. I enjoyed sampling these nonetheless. Another notch in my belt. I like experiencing new things.



Premium single malt at the new Rye Tasting Room, Il Ponticello.  A four-shot sampler of the Glenlivet Let Die, with shots of Glenlivet 12, 15, 18, and 21;



Cheers to more years together, good health, and happiness! <3

An ode to girls who drink Whiskey!

Whiskey drinkers are romantics in every sense of the word; they believe in the romance of language, of hearts and the romance of living. Whiskey drinkers skip the games, but never outgrow being playful. Take her for a walk and she’ll find all the best puddles, swing with you at a playground and wish on a whole constellation. –Kate Bartolotta


These dark chocolate truffles paired very very well with the bitter whisky. I was wondering how I can do a swipe-ala-Ray & also put some in my bag to bring home! ;)



You cannot drink on a very full stomach, so after the drinks, came more food. Yay! \m/


4-Cheese Wagyu Burger 360 php. 1/3 pounder Wagyu beef patty in cheese sauce topped with lettuce and tomatoes on a soft and buttery brioche bun, served with ale-battered fries on the side.



Porchetta Sandwich.



Porchetta alla Romana (P390/solo, P1,200/1 kg.) that launched the new menu of Il Ponticello! Roasted pork belly with a crackling skin and stuffed with fennel and garlic.



Bread Pudding with steamed milk.



Girls (and boys) just wanna have fun at Rye Il Ponticello! ;)



With beautiful, strong, independent & successful ladies SAM OH & KARMI PALAFOX whom I was fortunate to be seated across that night. <3

The Rye Il Ponticello also offers other tasting sampler. The Spirits Tasting Flights: Flight School, Top Gun, and Aviator, featuring the world’s best spirits selection of vodka, gin, rum, and tequila. Do visit their Facebook page for further details & schedules.

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