OTO means ‘sound’ in Japanese after all.
Summer dreams are made of these: a road trip, chill music, a good tan, some drinks, and HOHOL with family and friends. Okay, fine: siestas, too. For the lucky ones, summer lasts for a few months while for the rest of us, a long weekend holiday will have to do. We can’t always be on vacation, but that doesn’t mean the good times have to be short-lived.
So how exactly do you cure a summer hangover? Young STAR asked David Ong of Curator and OTO to share with us the perfect drink to keep the good vibes flowing. Part of the new cocktail menu of OTO (his latest venture in Poblacion, Makati), #ReligionBlack is the perfect drink that takes you back to hot summer days at the beach. Think your classic mojito but with a twist — it’s made of white rum, lime juice, housemade black sesame syrup, and shiso (sesame leaf). While it’s named after his sister Tina Ong’s blogger moniker (“after a lot of nagging,” David shares), it’s also a shout-out to every person by the bar who likes their cocktails sour and easy to drink, and keeps ‘em coming. (Go ahead, we don’t judge.) If that’s not what you fancy, OTO also serves classics like daiquiri, Negroni and Old Fashioned.
OTO might be the new kid on the Poblacion block, but it sure knows how to throw a shindig. Besides the draaanks, it boasts an impressive sound system (the two giant horns are hard to miss, tbh) and an even greater vinyl record collection for whatever you might be in the mood for that day. The setlist runs from The Killers to The XX, easing guests from coffee to cocktails seamlessly. Music is very much part of the experience that way. (OTO, translated from Japanese to English, means sound, after all.)
There are a lot of things that they’re still working on. The much-anticipated brunch menu will have everything from charcuterie to the classic Pinoy-style tapa. The coffee will always be great, and the cocktails we can only expect to get better. (We’ve been tipped that an adult version of the Milo Dinosaur is hitting the bar pretty soon.) The sound system will mature in time, much like the budding neighborhood of Poblacion. But if there’s one thing OTO does right from the beginning, it is to show its guests that it doesn’t take more than coffee, cocktails and a curated playlist to have a great time. It’s always summer here.
OTO is located at G/F 5880 Enriquez St. Poblacion, Makati City.