Long a popular nighttime haunt for its abundance of bars, buns, and bosoms (all things that you can easily find on Padre Burgos Street), Barangay Poblacion has become a treasure trove of small restobars that offer relief for the few who wish not to partake in the fleshy pleasures that P. Burgos is famous for. Here’s why you should make Brgy. Poblacion your next destination with your boys.
We’ve rounded up a list of the spots that can take you from happy hour to witching hour. The name of the game is simple: 5 stops with 1, 2, or even 3 options each, so you can choose your own adventure based on your mood (and budget).
Stop #1: Hear ye, beer yay
Catchy as it may sound, “Beer before liquor, never been sicker, liquor before beer, never fear/you’re in the clear” is a MYTH that needs to be buried. Contribute to the debunking of this myth with a round of beers at any of these spots:
1) Kite Kebab Bar
Aside from the usual San Miguel Beers, Kite has a specialty on its drinks list: the Kite Beer, a mix of Kombucha (fermented black tea and sugar that supposedly brings an end to digestive woes), Red Horse, Sprite; all deceptively mixed in a tall beer glass. Word of advice: don’t knock it till you’ve tried it.
Kite Kebab Bar
5772 Ebro Street
Open 11am-3am (Sun-Thu); 11am-4am (Fri-Sun)
2) Joe’s Brew
Call yourself a beer connoisseur? Haul ass to Joe’s Brew and order up their P300 Beer Flight: a wooden paddle the lines up 4 of Joey Viray’s brewskies, each to be taken one after the other in the suggested order.
5834 Matilde Street
Open 5pm-1am (Tues-Sun)
Stop #2 : Rooftop hangs
With your liver all warmed up, no doubt you’ll be ready for something harder. Move on to your next stop at dusk and pick a balcony seat while you order your next round.
A fan of homebrews and local fare? Alamat’s red-hot sign above its long line of taps say it best: “CRAFT BEER FOR THE PEOPLE." Take it as a sign and order something off the tap, or a cocktail that's infused with local flavor, or made purely out of local ingredients (i.e. lambanog).
Alamat Filipino Pub & Deli
Open 4pm-1am (Tue-Thu, Sun); 5pm-2am (Fri&Sat)
2) Z Hostel Roof Deck Bar
Z Hostel’s rooftop views are unparalled in the area thanks to their location. Order whatever (yes, that’s a cocktail), #mayforever, or Punyeta to keep you company as you take in the view of the Makati Ave skyline.
5660 Don Pedro St.
(02) 8560851 / (0917) 8898531
Stop #3: Liquor in the front
All those beers and walking up rooftops should’ve worked up your appetite, making you ready for the third stop. Order grub with your drinks, these places are just as good with their nosh as they are with their booze.
1) Crying Tiger Street Kitchen
This place is so quintessentially Thai that it even serves Chang & Tiger beer (both widely available in Thailand) alongside the local San Miguel brews, but with an extensive (and very Asian) cocktail list, it’s doubtless you’ll be tempted to stay for more than one round of drinks.
Crying Tiger Street Kitchen
4986 Guanzon Street
2) Pura Vida
This Costa Rican joint (pun intended), is tucked away along Don Pedro Street, which makes it a convenient stop before or after Z Hostel (or even Alamat). You’ll have an abundance of cocktails and shots to pick from, so choose wisely.
Don Pedro Street
Open 6pm to 230am (Tues-Sun)
3) Bar Mathilde
At Bar Mathilde, you’ll be choosing between 10 classic cocktails, aptly labeled “Liquid Sunshine” on the menu. With the amount of attention (that stems from genuine interest) these guys put into their cocktails, expect each glass to be worth the tag price.
Stop #4: Shot through the heart
For Bon Jovi, at least, but everyone knows the shot goes in best through the mouth. Knock back a few at any (or all) of the following:
1) A’Toda Madre
Where tequila (and mescal!) is so top-notch, you’ll think twice about throwing it back in one swallow. So, don’t.
G/F, Sunnette Tower, Durban Street
Open 5pm – 2am
2) Le Café Curieux
Not a fan of agave spirits? Take yourself to Curieux and order any flavor of their House Rum. At 80 pesos a pop (or P720 for 10 shots), the chili and ginger shots are the most highly recommended out of the bunch.
Le Café Curieux
Bel Air Soho Bldg, Caceres Street
Open 6pm – 2am
(02) 9066684 / (0905) 4826371
Stop #5: Rage Against the Machine
Whether you’re a belter, a spectator, or a raver, we bet you Poblacion has got exactly the thing to tickle even the weirdest of fancies.
1) Music Platinum KTV
Some things are better done inebriated, and singing is one of them. Rock stars do it, so why shouldn’t you? Pro tip: Go on a weekday and enjoy 50% discount on room rates.
Music Platinum Family KTV
47 Polaris Street
Open 230pm to 4am
2) Ringside Bar
Ringside has been pitting midgets (and well-oiled ladies) against each other in a boxing ring for a decade now, so if your idea of entertainment is to laugh at someone at their own expense, then this is the place for you.
1 Burgos Street cor. Kalayaan Ave.
Stop #6: A Beer For the Road
If the clock strikes 3 (AM) and you’ve still got gas in the tank, then look no further than these 24-hour haunts for your last hurrah.
1) Filling Station
Because one does not simply do a Poblacion crawl without stopping by the Filling Station, as it lies right smack in the center of P Burgos Street.
50112 P Burgos Street
2) Handlebar Manila
This longtime Poblacion resident is always packed with people who try to take advantage of their Happy Hour promos. Happy hour or no, Handlebar’s beers are served cold (like your ex) and cheap (like you).
Open 24 hrs
31 Polaris St.
While the impromptu inuman never grows old, there are days when the idea of stepping out for a drink (or a night) seems valid. Gather up your sweldo, your best reasons for inebriation, and your buds and take this drink-tinerary out for a spin soon.