Philly isn’t exactly a city that never sleeps, but there are still plenty of places to get a stellar meal after hours. When it’s past 10 PM and you want more than just a hoagie, remember these 10 best bets for late-night dining and end your evening on a culinary high note.
This subterranean dining room in the Gayborhood is pretty much your sole option for gastropub fare past 1 AM - the kitchen serves the full menu through 3 AM, every day but Tuesday. With former Mercato chef Mackenzie Hilton behind the line, there is plenty worth staying up for, from kale to pork belly, asparagus to the egg-topped breakfast burger.
243 S. Camac St.; 215-545-1102
Rittenhouse barhoppers know to make the last stop on a crawl at this Lombard Street tavern, which serves the entire menu of high-end pub food through 1 AM every day. Even the bar snacks from chef Eli Collins are interesting - pickled beets with Stilton cheese goes with more beers than you might imagine.
1946 Lombard St.; 215-545-0350
Sometimes it's a sandwich that makes a perfect end-of-night bite, but you don’t have to settle for boring bread creations if you hit up this Point Breeze pub, which serves through 1 AM daily. Chef Scott Schroeder’s namesake sardine-wich might be the most flavorful $2 you can spend. Plus, there’s a just-added 11 PM-1 AM happy hour on Sunday and Monday with half-off cans and boilermakers.
1801 Federal St.; 215-334-2337
From 10:30 PM-midnight, Sunday-Thursday, Marcie Turney’s Midtown Village hot spot runs a special late-night menu with both food and drink deals. The Neapolitan pizza, pasta, burger and veggie board of the day all go for $10 each, paired with $3 drafts, $4 sangria and $5 wine. Even if actual Europeans wouldn’t finish up until several hours later, this makes for a finale worthy of the Mediterranean.
110 S. 13th St.; 215-546-9300
Fact is, sometimes a plate of pancakes or two eggs and hashbrowns are the ideal meal after an evening out, and while you may have to wait, staring longingly across the Formica as regulars are served before you, there’s nothing wrong with the breakfast food at this Rittenhouse joint. It’s one of Philly’s only true diners, open 24 hours a day.
219 S. 17th St.; 215-545-5508
If you want to nosh with chefs after they’ve done an evening shift, your best bet is one of several Asian options centered around 10th and Race. From salt and pepper squid at David’s Mai Lai Wah to spicy crab at Tai Lake to hot-pot tofu at Shiao Lan Kung, you’ll find well-spiced satisfaction through 3 or 4 AM.
If your night wraps up near Northern Liberties, head to the city’s original gastropub for chef Carolyn Angle’s daily changing menu, the whole thing served through 1 AM every single day. From hearty chicken pie to delicate pâtés and salads, it all goes down better with a local draft beer for dessert.
901 N. Second St.; 215-238-0630
Late-night happy hour is in effect 10:30 PM-midnight, Monday-Thursday, at this Vetri birreria on North Broad, and if you want your after-hours eggs deviled in style, this is where to find them. Charcuterie plates and mortadella hot dogs also live up to high standards - instead of a beer, match them with a $7 Negroni, poured from the tap.
1410 Mt. Vernon St.; 215-600-0017
If your hunger bell tolls for tacos on your way home and it’s before 1 AM, this Fishtown Mexi-Cali should be stop numero uno. Choose from one of 10 different fillings like camarones (shrimp) or cochinita pibil (slow-roasted pork), or mix and match and toss ‘em back like morning will never come.
2401 E. Norris St.; 267-886-8061
Tap out on a sugary note with a pre-crash visit to one of these gelaterias, which are open through midnight on Friday and Saturday (every day for the University City location). Soothing and refreshing at the same time, a cup or cone before bed will make your dreams all the more sweet.