Il Ponticello: A Favorable Resurgence

A favorable resurgence especially to those who have lived through the good ol' days of yore {read: 90s} for the Gen Zers. For me, the 90s feels like it was just 10 years ago! I just dated myself. Anyway, Il Ponticello, monikered 'Ponti', is back with a delicious vengeance! I haven't been to it in years, but it was a real pleasure to visit it again, and reminisce about the scene back then over good food!

Ponti's rejuvenated interior is akin to an enviable man cave. It has a well-stocked, stately bar plus various interesting fixings that provided character to the place. I love the tufted high back chairs mixed with solid wood. I love chairs, period.

Il Ponticello Mozzarella in Caroza, Portobello ala Griglia,

Satisfying selection of light bites include Mozzarella in Caroza, Portobello ala Griglia, Grilled Chicken Insalata, Caesar Salad Panzanella, Minestrone Siciliana, and Mushroom Cream Soup. The first two were the winners for me.

Mozzarella in Caroza - squares of mozzarella pan fried butter, heightened by balsamic reduction. The smoky flavor and aroma of the Portobello ala Griglia {grilled portobello mushrooms, mozzarella di bufala, smoked ricotta, poached cherry tomatoes, anointed with EVOO} were deliciously affixed to my senses until now.

Il Ponticello Portobello ala Griglia
Portobello ala Griglia  PhP 490

Il Ponticello Chilean Seabass in Botiglia
Chilean Seabass in Botiglia  PhP 1,400  

I was charmed by both the Chilean Seabass' presentation and the taste! The presentation was obviously done with a creative flair - flaky pan roasted Chilean seabass, mussels, clams, slices of Napoletana picante sausage were beautifully crammed inside a clip-top glass jar. The large chunk of fish was cooked to an addicting level of tenderness. I was thinking that this could be the kitchen czar's {Executive Chef Panky Lopez} strong point, but then all the dishes I had that day were good, so I don't know.    

Il Ponticello Chilean Seabass in Botiglia

Grilled Prawns

Grilled garlic imbued prawns, wonderfully complimented by a pot of troffiette with pesto. The butterflied crustaceans were well-seasoned, succulent, and plump. It's the strong flavor of garlic that made me love it more.

Pizza Valdostana
Pizza Valdostana  PhP 520

The Pizza Valdostana {a Chef's signature dish} was undoubtedly superb, but it was the Rotolo that made me swoon!  First, the Pizza Valdostana - parma ham, gorgonzola cream, mozzarella, and arugula were arranged to perfection on top of a thin crust with faintly puffed and singed edges.

Il Ponticello's Rotolo is a first-rate showcase of culinary talent. The rolled pie is smothered with tangy tomato cream sauce, and stippled with ricotta and mortadella. The final punch that anchors the different flavors together was the glob of pesto. Jonesing for one NOW!

Il Ponticello Rotolo
Rotolo  PhP 480

Il Ponticello Gnocchi Amatriciana
Gnocchi Amatriciana   PhP 390

I love gnocchi! This was a light version of the chewy nuggets {with nary a starchy taste - score!!!} razzed up by tomato sauce, pancetta, and shavings of grana padano. 

Il Ponticello Crema di Tartufo
Crema di Tartufo  PhP 450

Pappardelle {cooked al dente}, infused with truffle paste and truffle oil and finely chopped smoky porcini mushrooms. The celebrated ingredient combined with the rest resulted in an unforgettable dish that's big enough for sharing.

Il Ponticello Lasagna Carbonara
Lasagna Carbonara   PhP 420

When this landed on our table, I initially thought that it would be too rich, too satiating. But, lo and behold, it wasn't! The mutation of two favorite pasta dishes was heaped with a light mozzarella cream and mottled with strips of pancetta and grana padano. A lone organic egg yolk made everything extra velvety. For me, this was unquestionably the star of Il Ponticello's pasta offerings.    

Il Ponticello Flat Iron Steak
Flat Iron Steak  PhP 590

The reasonably priced Flat Iron Steak was served medium rare along with garlic mashed potatoes and summer salad. This is a great choice for meat lovers who are scared of fat. The garlic mashed potatoes was a killer!

Il Ponticello's Signature Porchetta ala Romana
Il Ponticello's Signature Porchetta ala Romana  Whole PhP 1,200 / Solo  PhP 390

This was love at first sight, and obsession at first bite! I'm not afraid of fat, and fat's not afraid of me; it just goes wherever it wants to. *sigh*

The crackling skin envelopes a thick layer of flavor-packed fat and tender meat, anointed with fennel and lots of garlic. This is high on my agenda the next time I visit Ponti. If you're thinking of something to temper the grease, rice pilaf is the answer. The solo comes with it along with a piquant serving of pommery mustard.

Dark Chocolate Panna Cotta
Dark Chocolate Panna Cotta   PhP  290

Ponti's desserts are, in one word, earthshatteringlyamazing! Lord Almighty, they were fantastic! Some of my friends were wowed by the Cheesecake Panna Cotta; I, on the other hand, adored the Dark Chocolate version. The esteemed Italian dessert is at the height of perfection: smooth, rich, substantially creamy, slightly jiggly, and just plain delicious. 

Budino al Cioccolato  PhP 390

And then there's this: Budino al Cioccolato. I was still basking in the heavenly panna cotta when this arrived. No time to recover whatsoever. Not that I'm complaining or anything. 

Chocolate lava pudding pot made extra sinful by caramel sauce and vanilla cream - glorious!!! Crack this beauty open, and then pour a lot {why scrimp?} of caramel sauce plus a dollop of vanilla cream. Eat and be amazed!  

Budino al Cioccolato

Cannoli  PhP 290

Crispy lush tubes filled with ricotta cream, sprinkled with dark chocolate morsels and confectioner's, and amplified by various nuts. The size is just right for me, and the thinness of the shell was just perfect. Prepare yourself for one delicious mess when devouring these babies. 


Thank you to the wonderful staff for taking good care of us. They are one of the kindest and most accommodating around. Very much appreciated. Please continue the great work, guys! 

Il Ponticello
2/F Antel 2000 Bldg., 121 Valero St.,
Salcedo Village, Makati City
Tel. No. (+632) 553.99.71
Facebook: Il Ponticello
Twitter: @pontimnl
Instagram: @pontimnl

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