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Pobla, G?

Over the past few years, Poblacion has become a resurgence of gustatory adventures, attracting a thriving nightlife through the plethora of pubs peppered around the humble neighborhood. Not to mention, the countless restaurant concepts that have proven unique to other food districts in Metro Manila such as Maginhawa, Kapitolyo, Aguirre Ave., etc.

Because of the influx of new eateries and establishments, Poblacion also houses hole-in-the-wall restaurants that are underratedly good and deserve more attention. We’ve rounded up a few hidden gems, so here’s a list of 15 Hole-in-the-Wall Restaurants to Discover in Poblacion.

Holy Smokes BBQ

Holy Smokes BBQ serves authentic Texas-style barbecue such as smoked brisket, ribs, chicken, sausage, bacon, and pulled pork – all smoked using local fruitwood. Although Holy Smokes BBQ is temporarily closed, their best-selling Beef Brisket will definitely be back soon! For now, you can call their number and get their barbecue delivered.

Recommended dishes: their best-selling USDA Certified Angus Beef Brisket (smoked between 12-16 hours) as well as their Corn Donuts.

Beef Brisket from Holy Smokes BBQ
Photo from @holysmokesbbqph
Corn Donuts from Holy Smokes BBQ
Photo from @holysmokesbbqph

Holy Smokes menu
View their Facebook page
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Matilde cor Jacobo St, Poblacion, Makati
(0917) 532-9361; (0917) 503-6544

Dulo MNL

Dulo MNL is a hybrid of both a restaurant-bar and an events place that caters to creatives of all generations. Often, Dulo MNL hosts live performances, open mics, and art exhibits, so be sure to check out what they have in store!

Recommended dishes: their Pork Belly Bao and Four Nine Nine Two Cooler.

Pulled Pork Bao with Gochujang sauce, seaweed, and pickled onion from Dulo MNL
Photo from @dulomnl
Cocktails with sprigs of rosemary and citrus from Dulo MNL
Photo from @dulomnl

No reservations accepted
Dulo MNL menu
View their Facebook page
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4992 P. Guanzon St, Poblacion, Makati
(0975) 694-9176

Polilya

Originally created as a tasting room for the local Engkanto Brewery, Polilya has become a popular hang-out with reinvented bar chow and an array of signature cocktails infused with Engkanto beer to emphasize the homegrown beer as the heart and soul of their bar.

Recommended dishes: their Zen Chicken Nuggets, Ultimate Nachos, and Bourbon IPA.

Polilya interior with neon-lit signs and an assortment of hard liquor
Photo from @polilya.mnl
zen chicken nuggets from Polilya
Photo from @polilya.mnl
Insider tip: You can enjoy a Buy 1 Get 1 Weekly Slushie for ₱300 ₱150!

Polilya menu
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5658 Jacobo St, beside Z Hostel, Poblacion, Makati

LOBO Filipino Tavern

Lobo Filipino Tavern pays homage to classic Philippine architecture while serving Filipino fare that is simple yet progressive as they highlight our islands’ robust flavors with a hint of elevation.

Recommended dishes: their Lamb Adobo, Sizzling Bulalo, Pork Sisig Nachos, and Squid Ink Pasta.

Lamb Adobo from Lobo Filipino Tavern
Photo from @lobo_filipino_tavern
Squid Ink Pasta from Lobo Filipino Tavern
Photo from @chinoh151

Reservations are accepted
Lobo Filipino Tavern menu
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4898 Durban St, Poblacion, Makati
(02) 805-9380

Alamat Filipino Pub & Deli

Alamat is one of the newest night spots along Poblacion in Makati that aims to serve ‘the best pulutan of your life’. Unique Filipino dishes like kare-kare skewers and bacon bagnet and scene stealers. Pair them with Alamat’s draft beer selection and cocktails. 

Recommended dishes: Kulma Skewers, Taho Cheesecake, and Sampaloc Candy Cocktail.

Isaw skewers from Alamat
Photo from @alamatfilipinopub
Taho Cheesecake topped with sago and arnibal from Alamat
Photo from @alamatfilipinopub

No reservations accepted
Alamat Filipino Pub Deli menu
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2/F 5666 Don Pedro St, Poblacion, Makati
(0917) 530-2580

Loco Manuk

Loco Manuk is one of the newer spots in Poblacion and an underrated Filipino-Latin American fusion restaurant specializing in delectable wood-fire chicken.

Recommended dishes: their Wood-Roasted Chicken with Labuyo Jam, Sisig Bao, and Churro Clasico.

Wood-roasted Chicken with cilantro from Loco Manuk
Photo from @loco_manuk
Churros with chocolate sauce on the side from Loco Manuk
Photo from @loco_manuk
Insider tip: Get up to ₱500 off on your bill with Booky!

Loco Manuk menu
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2/F 5666 Don Pedro St, Poblacion, Makati
(0917) 530-2580

Wantusawa 

Wantusawa is a hole-in-the-wall oyster bar tucked behind the bustling bars and restaurants of Tambai Alley. The unassuming restaurant serves fresh oysters flown in from Aklan daily, which you can get fresh, baked, or fried for only ₱50 a pop.

Recommended dishes: their Baked Aklan Oysters, Grilled Prawn Laksa, and Crispy Tawilis. 

Wantusawa Interiors
Photo from Facebook | wantusawaoysters
Wantusawa's Baked Aklan Oysters
Photo from Facebook | wantusawaoysters

Wantusawa menu
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5779 Felipe St. Poblacion, Makati
(0917) 301-7968

Lámpara

Lámpara is a Neo-Filipino Bistro, which aims to illuminate Filipino cuisine through their contemporary fare. A gustatory experience, Lámpara has paved the way for Filipino cuisine and the endless possibilities it can achieve through its imaginative yet distinctly Filipino dishes.

Recommended dishes: their Dinuckdukan, Yema & Tsokolate, and the Melon Milk Dessert. 

Lámpara interior
Photo from @lampara.pob
Lámpara Melon Milk dessert
Photo from @lampara.pob

Lámpara menu
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5883 Enriquez St, Poblacion, Makati
(0917) 173-5883

A’Toda Madre

A’Toda Madre is the only tequila and mezcal bar in the Philippines with the largest selection of Mexican liquor. To complement their selection of 100% agave spirits, they also serve authentic Mexican bar chow such as Elotes Callejeros, Street Tacos, and Tostaditas.

Insider tip: They also offer a tequila tasting flight, so you can sample everything!

A'Toda Madre Taco
Photo from @atodamadreph
A'Toda Madre cocktails
Photo from Facebook | atodamadretequila

A’Toda Madre menu
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G/F Sunette Tower, Durban St cor Makati Ave, Poblacion, Makati
(0998) 999-1521; (0998) 985-5198

NoKal

Short for “North of Kalayaan,” NoKal is a New York-inspired restaurant concept in the center of Poblacion. Serving casual, New York-style comfort food accompanied by acts from the most coveted artists, NoKal is your go-to to witness Poblacion’s nightlife prowls.

Recommended dishes: their Nokal Steak Rice and Hot Wings. 

Fun fact: NoKal is a three-storey bar and each floor offers a different vibe.
NoKal Hot Wings
Photo from @nokal.mnl
NoKal Rice meal with sunny-side up egg ontop
Photo from @nokal.mnl

NoKal menu
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8486 Kalayaan Avenue Makati, Poblacion, Makati
(0917) 318-1385

Khao Khai Thai Chicken House 

Hidden in the busy streets of Poblacion, Khao Khai is a laidback eatery that specializes in Northern Thailand cuisine. You won’t find your classic Pad Thai dish here, but their best-selling Bangkok “Street Cart” Style Fried Chicken known as Gai Tod, is a mainstay.

Recommended dishes: their Gai Tod fried chicken, Kor Moo Yang Pork Belly, and Gai Yang Charcoal Chicken.

Khao Khai Fried Chicken
Photo from @khaokhaiph
Khao Khai Charcoal chicken
Photo from @khaokhaiph

No reservations accepted
Khao Khai menu
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5772 Ebro St, Poblacion, Makati
(0949) 113-2942

Cosmic

Cosmic is a cutting-edge bistro that offers full-fledged vegan comfort food. The concept was built out of the owners’ passion and need for more accessible, affordable, and delicious vegan and vegetarian dishes. Now, Cosmic has become a sanctuary for the health-conscious folks of Manila with their plant-based delights.

Recommended dishes: their Vegan Lasagna, Kare-Kare with 'Bagnet', and King Oyster Mushroom. 

Cosmic Vegan Kare-Kare with Bagnet
Photo from Facebook | CosmicPhilippines
Cosmic's Vegan Lasagna topped with marinara sauce and pesto
Photo from Facebook | CosmicPhilippines

Cosmic menu
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2/F 5057 P Burgos St cor Gen Luna, Poblacion, Makati
(0946) 770-0000

Yalla Yalla Express

Yalla Yalla (Arabic for “let’s get going” or “hurry up”) is a hole-in-the-wall eatery that serves affordable and authentic Lebanese cuisine.

Recommended dishes: their Beef Shawarma, Shishtaouk, and Lebanese Burger.

Yalla Yalla Beef Shawarma Rice with yogurt sauce on top
Photo from @alexohph
Falafel from Yalla Yalla
Photo from @yallayallaexpressph

No reservations accepted
Yalla Yalla menu
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5652 Don Pedro Street, Poblacion, Makati
(02) 986-7078

Pura Vida

Pura Vida is the first Costa Rican lounge in Manila that offers cold beers, authentic Costa Rican favourites, and reggae music all night long. An epitome of the vibrant culture of the rainforested nation, Pura Vida opens their dance floor to the public from 11 PM onwards.

Recommended dishes: their Patacones, Casados, and Churchill. 

Pura Vida chicken wings
Photo from @puravidamnl
Pura Vida Patacones
Photo from @puravidamnl

Reservations are accepted
Pura Vida menu
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Don Pedro Street cor Jacobo Street, right next to Z Hostel, Poblacion, Makati
(0919) 310-0535

The Smokeyard

The Smokeyard is the brainchild of internationally-trained pitmaster, Troy Conine. This no-frills classic all-American barbecue joint serves low and slow-smoked meats, tacos, and sandwiches.

Recommended dishes: Baby Back Ribs, Beef Brisket, and Mac & Cheese.

The Smokeyard's Interior
Photo from Facebook | thesmokeyard
The Smokeyard's wide array of smoked meats and sides
Photo from Facebook | thesmokeyard

Reservations are accepted
The Smokeyard menu
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5666 Don Pedro Street, Poblacion, Makati
(02) 771-1288

For more choices, search for ‘POBLACION‘ in the Booky app to see the complete list of restaurants within that area. Subscribe to Booky Prime now to get your P1,000 worth of discount credits! Use it to book a table at any of our 500 partner restaurants that offer up to P500 discount on selected seating times.

Cover image by @khaokhaiph.