Best Bars in Metro Manila to Chill on a Friday Night
For the hardworking millennial, Friday means welcoming the weekend with a drink whether with officemates or old-time friends. Five days of work (or for some, school and work) can be really stressful, itching people to go out and enjoy a beer or a bucket of two. We understand this. Believe us, we’ve been there too. Actually, nope, we’re still in that phase because nothing beats having a drink and forgetting about a week full of responsibilities.
And like you, we also like hanging out in cool bars around the metro. “Pre, inom tayo!” sounds so good when you know where to go after a long day at work. So sit back and relax because we rounded up the best places to drink on a Friday night. Check ‘em out and don’t forget to share this list to your officemates and barkada!
5658 Don Pedro Street, Poblacion, Makati City
Tuesday to Sunday 6:30pm to 2am
If local craft beer is your thing, head to Polilya, a small yet eye-catching bar in Poblacion, Makati. Co-owned by Engkanto Brewery founder Ian Paradies, Polilya is studded with neon lights, hip décor, and unique furniture perfect for your selfie needs. They also serve delicious chow that you and your officemates can share over a bottle of beer. Try their Fish and Chips and Zen Chicken Nuggets, and don’t forget to order their famous draft beer, The Blonde Ale.
196-A Katipunan Ave, Project 4, Quezon City
Tuesday to Saturday 6pm to 2am
Route 196 isn’t new to the regular gig goer. Located in Blue Ridge, Katipunan, this bar and restaurant is home to famous and upcoming musicians such as Up Dharma Down, The Itchyworms, Ang Bandang Shirley, Autotelic, and Run Dorothy. It’s the perfect bar to visit if you’re looking for good local music, tasty chicken, and cheap beer. Route 196 is typically packed on Fridays, adding to bar’s hominess and appeal. Bring your friends here or take a date who loves local music as well.
Lan Kwai Speakeasy
42 Esteban Abada Street, Quezon City
Monday to Saturday 11am to 2am
Have you always wanted to go to Hong Kong but don’t have the time and budget for it? Huwag ka ng malungkot, friend. You and your friends can experience the HK nightlife in Lan Kwai Speakeasy, a bar and restaurant in Quezon City. Inspired by Lan Kwai Fong, a popular drinking spot in HK, Lan Kwai Speakeasy serves affordable food and drinks ideal for walwalan nights. Try their Hakaw (P189/four pieces) and Lemon Chicken Rice (P145) before ordering a round of Sunny Bay Sour (P99) or Passionfruit Sangria (P129).
4993 P. Guanzon Street, Poblacion, Makati
Monday to Saturday 8am to 2am
People go to Dulo MNL not only for the food and drinks but also for the venue’s artistic vibe. In the morning, Dulo MNL is a homey café for Makati dwellers. However, in the evening, it turns into a bar and events place that gather creatives for concerts, exhibits, and film viewings. Drop by here after work and try their Mushroom Bao or Salmon Belly Rice Bowl. Also, don’t forget to have a sip of their famous Espresso Martini, a concoction of, well, espresso and martini. Bottoms up!
32 Scout Madriñan Street, South Triangle, Quezon City
Monday to Saturday 5pm to 2am
If you live in Teacher’s Village or have studied in UP Diliman, then you’re probably familiar of Tomato Kick. This bar and restaurant has been in business for so many years, from their Maginhawa branch to their current space in Malingap and Tomas Morato. Owned and managed by Paolo Bernaldo (of Moonstar88), Tomato Kick serves as a hangout and gig place for students, residents, and employees of the north. Go here for the music, the food, and the cheap booze.
Alamat Filipino Pub and Deli
5666 Don Pedro St., Poblacion, Makati City
Monday to Sunday 6pm to 2am
Nothing beats beer and yummy pulutan, especially after a looooong and stressful day at work. However, if you’re tired of the usual sisig and adobong mani, better head to Alamat Filipino Pub and Deli in Poblacion, Makati. Alamat (as what regulars call it) serves one-of-a-kind pulutan like Sinigang Bar Nuts, Tinolang Tahong, and Bacon Bagnet. (I know right???) Pair these with their Barik Puro Lambanog or Calamansi Mojito for an unforgettable drinking experience.
White Plains West, 42 Katipunan Avenue, White Plains, Quezon City
Monday to Sunday 3:30pm to 12:30am
If jazz and whiskey sounds good to you, then you better visit 78-53-86 in White Plains, Quezon City. Owned by vinyl collector Jay Amante, 78-53-86 boasts not only of signature cocktails (try “In A Silent Way,” a mix of whiskey, cinnamon, and orange liquor) but shelves of records as well. Don’t expect bar chow, though. 78-53-86 only serves truffle popcorn to maintain the ambiance of the place and to prevent grease that can ruin records.
Warehouse 5, La Fuerza Plaza, 2241 Chino Roces, Makati City
Tuesday to Saturday 8pm to 4am
Trying to quit cigarettes? Or maybe you hate the smell of smoke? Fret not because there is a bar in Makati that dislikes cigar, too. Finders Keepers may be hard to locate but it’s one of the best bars in the city to have a drink, a bite, and a dance with friends. Order their Beergherita and F*k Sour—prepared by an in-house mixologist—while dancing to modern indie tunes. Very millennial, I tell you.
So which of these bars suit you? Are you the chill type, the party type, or the one who’s in it for the music? Wherever you go, remember to capture memories with your camera so you can look back and go back when you’re craving for a night out again. Enjoy!