Route 196

196 Katipunan Ave., Quezon City, Metro Manila

Route 196
4.2
4.0 Stars

14 Reviewers

  • 5 stars 4
  • 4 stars 9
  • 3 stars 1
  • 2 stars 0
  • 1 star 0
  • 15 Reviews
  • 35 Recommend
  • 14 Reviewers
Category:
Bar
Business Hours
Reopens: 6:00p - 3:00a
Phone
+6324391972

Hours

  • Sunday
    • Closed
  • Monday
    • 6:00p - 3:00a
  • Tuesday
    • 6:00p - 3:00a
  • Wednesday
    • 6:00p - 3:00a
  • Thursday
    • 6:00p - 3:00a
  • Friday
    • 6:00p - 3:00a
  • Saturday
    • 6:00p - 3:00a

Payment Options

Cash, MasterCard, Visa

More Business Info

Parking:
Street
Door Charge:
Yes
Good for Dancing:
No
Music:
Background
Smoking:
Yes
Ambience:
Casual
Attire:
Casual

Most Recent Reviews

Nikki C.
3.0 Stars
4

The dining area is quite small. Only a few tables near the band stage. They have a lounge area for smokers which has more seats and spacious.

Alcohol beverages were limited (IMO), not a lot to choose from 128533

Parking us also limited.

Brew kettle was 11088110881108811088127866

  • No. of Comments: 1
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Carmela M.
4.0 Stars

Route 196 has been my go-to gig venue since it's just in Katipunan. I won't need to drive all the way to Makati (Saguijo) to see some OPM artists play. I love how the place is very intimate although it gets really packed late at night. This also means parking space being a problem.

The last time I was here, we were lucky to get the couch right in front of the stage. It felt like getting VIP tickets! The P150 door charge gets you a free drink. I always order Pale Pilsen but last time, I noticed that my second bottle of beer tasted weird. I didn't mind it and finished it still. When I went to the bar to ask for water, I heard a lady beside me complaining that her San Mig Light tasted awful. I was too sleepy to even complain so I just let it pass. Oh well, I hope next time they make sure they serve good beer. Life is too short for bad beer! 128514127867

  • No. of Comments: 4
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Aeson B.
4.0 Stars

Regular gigs done here

  • No. of Comments: 1
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Tei A.
4.0 Stars

We arrived early before the show. I like the vibe of this place, crowd is a mix of yuppies and bagets when we were there.

Food-wise, i had their Isaw Platter - sooo good! 2 sticks of isaw baboy, isaw chix and tenga! 128077
Their pizzas seem to be popular and saw couple of tables were ordering it.

Thanks to my friend for inviting me here to watch Johnoy (i've no idea who he is, but he turned out to be really good).

  • No. of Comments: 0
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Mei O.
5.0 Stars

Why I love R196? It's just at Katipunan, the food is good, beers are not that overpriced, and the intimate setting. The only thing not so much fun here is the parking, but finding a parking space here is better/easier than most music/gig bars (e.g. Saguijo and 70's) so there's absolutely nothing to complain about! 128536

In any case, their line-ups are always interesting. Maybe I'm biased because they have my fave artists all the time. Terno Productions (hello UDD, Hidden Nikki, and the whole gang), Soulchild Prod, and most especially 2dididoo (even if Barbie plays on Mondays or Thursdays). The place is intimate, you'll get to see your favorite artists perform really up close and if you're a borderline fangirl, you can come up to them (after the set) and ask them to sign your body or have a photo - whichever floats your boat. Hey, no one's judging.

Usually entrance fee is Php150 which is inclusive of beer. Php150 is not so bad, but since this place is homey, cozy, and small, expect SRO when you come in late on a night with a good line-up. And, it can be a smokey room sometimes.

  • No. of Comments: 4
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Gabby d.
4.0 Stars

One of Pinoy Indie music's havens!!! And one of those that won't let you sweat all the way in spite of being packed up during gigs.
The drinks are readily available, also, food but if you don't plan to spend more than you usually do for a meal, you better go eat before you come in. But if you are, their crew's always ready to attend to the customers and their food is 7.5/10 so, your choice. The music will pay you more than you've bought anyway so 128077128077.

  • No. of Comments: 0
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Rj T.
4.0 Stars

Usually come here after driving range sessions in Aguinaldo or when friends have gigs there.

Small venue makes for a very cozy experience. Budding music photographers will get really up close and personal (so close you can tell if they took a bath before the show) with the musicians.

Pulutan selection is varied from the usual sisig and mozzarella sticks to more western fare like pizza.

  • No. of Comments: 0
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Marc C.
5.0 Stars

Yet another review of Route 196. This time it was Cyndi Lauper night. This was at the same night of her concert here at the Araneta Center. As always, bands playing would include covers from Cyndi. It was a hell of a party with new wave songs being played til late! The Ronnies headlined the playing of the new wave party songs that you can't resist dancing to!

  • No. of Comments: 0
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Marc C.
5.0 Stars

Inspired by Jamie G's review.

I go to Route once in a while if my friends have gigs there. Here is an old poster of one of the prods promoting a sharon night. This is when the features bands would play some songs of the featured artist plus their own songs & covers. Notable food here is the tinapa roll. Pizza is good as well. Other people in the indie rock scene can be also be seen in Last Home, Big Sky Mind, or 77. 128512128077

Will do another review for another prod soon!

Edit: YEY for the bar hopper badge! 128540128516128541128076128077

  • No. of Comments: 19
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Jamie G.
5.0 Stars

Oh, yes. That is the pretty & sexy Sarah Gaugler performing (Turbo Goth) in Route 196. I only get to see her watching gigs at SaGuijo so this was a first! They performed with other great bands such as Mayonnaise (I love them!!) and Bakeshop (Of course!!!)

Lights and sounds, not too shabby. I'm still debating if it's the board levels' or vocalist's defect (couldn't hear the lyrics too well...)

Beer's (and soda) served ice cold, so that's great!

They usually charge P150 with a free beer for entrance during gigs, but that's depending on Prod.

Anyway!!! Fun, fun night! Got to rub elbows (talk, take pictures) with Sarah G(augler!!) Lolzzzz

  • No. of Comments: 13
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Resy P.
4.0 Stars

One advantage of being a "kaladkarin" in Manila is that I get to watch the most awesome bands live!!!

I cancelled my yoga sesh that evening all thanks to my friend, Hans, who informed me about Up Dharma Down's gig at Route 196 last Friday.

I didn't regret one bit. There were several bands who played before UDD: Pulso and Encounters With A Yeti both played instrumental music (i dunno the exact term for this but it's more on the alternative rock side --- they had GREAT sets, by the way). Others were Sleepyheads, Popular Days and Radioactive Sago Project who all played equally awesome songs! 128077128077128077

I only had a glass of Mojito and a lemonade during that 5hr gig. They were ok. I mean, fair enough for their prices.

I love small pubs (think Saguijo) like this as they serve as an avenue for indie bands (with A LOT of potential to make it big in the music industry) to share their talents and their kind/genre of music. In fact, most of our iconic bands were first discovered in these bars.

Route 196 was super packed that night, overflowing with avid fans and people who are craving for good music. Major eargasm when UDD finally played!

Tip: since we arrived early, we got pretty good seats (yes, we were seated) -- just beside the band! However, it became a struggle going to and from the CR (which was kept clean all throughout 128077128077128077). And since the place is quite small, people had to stand for the rest of the night. It was filled to the brim that they get to be just a few inches away from their favorite artists. But maybe that's the point --- this is one of the very few venues that you could get really "intimate" with your idols. 128522

I think I lost a few decibels and frequencies that night by staying in the sidelines. But God did I enjoy every minute of it! 128522128077

  • No. of Comments: 2
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Grace d.
4.0 Stars

I'd never miss getting a plate of their ingenious Deviled Tofu each time I'm here. It's basically tofu in buffalo wings-flavored batter, deep fried, with blue cheese dip on the side. Just thinking about it makes me smile hehe.

Another favorite is their peppered sashimi: tuna rolled in cracked pepper, then sliced into bite-sized pieces. Yum.

This is where you get your live, authentic OPM fix in the Katipunan area. Albeit small, heavyweight bands like Up Dharma Down and Itchyworms grace this place. I personally like the intimate set-up (if I am able to get first dibs on the seats in front hehe), but expect it to be jampacked (and I mean PACKED, like a can of sardines) on gig nights.

Which leads me to having to remove 1 star: First, minus .5 because parking could be a problem since they do not have their own parking lot, just a space by the entrance that could fit up to two cars. Others will just have to park along the road or at the nearby UCPB bank.
Another minus .5; as it is permitted to smoke inside, expect your hair and clothes to reek of cigarettes. Like, really, when you get home, no matter how late it is already, or how hammered you are, you will have to haul your ass to the shower because otherwise, your pillows and sheets will hate you.

SHAMELESS PLUG!!! My boyfriend plays here every 2nd Friday of the month (photo for reference 128070). Come through if you can hehehehehehe

  • No. of Comments: 0
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Motorman W.
5.0 Stars

I LIKE THIS NEW INCARNATION OF ROUTE 196. IT STILL LOOKS ALMOST EXACTLY THE WAY IT USED TO BUT BACK THEN IT DIDN’T HAVE THE COUCHES OR THE SKATE BOARDS FIXED DECORATIVELY AROUND THE WALLS.

And nobody ever seems to notice the football logos that have been placed strategically beside the men’s bathroom. We watched the epic Spain vs Germany game here last World Cup (2010), and you’ve never seen so many non-Spaniards and non-Germans yelling their heads off loudly. This is one of the things that Route 196 is known for: they don’t just have music, they also have sports nights. Or iPod nights. Or any kind of nights, actually, as long as it happens on a night. Music, though, is the main attraction. The stage is really just a portion of the restaurant converted into an empty space where bands can set up. We suggest you go to Route 196 if you want to hear the latest pop/alternative bands, or if you want to plug in your iPod and impress the rest of the bar with your eclectic and certainly excellent music taste.

Full write-up on pindiemusic.com/venues

  • No. of Comments: 1
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Lesh C.
4.0 Stars

Place is reminiscent of all the gigs and hole in the wall bars that you go to, to support friends and their start up bands!

Big named bands also play here, the crowd is a mix of college students and those who still wish they're still in college ☆

Small place with skater wheels as door knob, a mix of lounge sofas, high stools, and dim lights.

Try the cheese sticks with bell peppers and pizza if you feel the munchies!

I always get Jack on the rocks and a separate coke in can for less than P150. Nobody could beat a price like that.

Worth coming to if you have a friend or your favorite local band's playing. The small area makes it more cozy and personal - as if you can touch them at an arm's reach ♪

Skateboards adorn the walls, the bars fully equipped to handle any drinks you want, and the experience would - most probably - definitely bring you back to your college gig experiences.

  • No. of Comments: 0
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Joanne Krisha L.
4.0 Stars

I liked it.

  • No. of Comments: 0
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