On nightlife strips across the area, weekend crowds stumble onto the street looking for late-night eats. Seasoned drinkers know that a greasy burger — say, from Lucky Buns in Adams Morgan — or a jumbo slice of pizza will go a long way toward combating the following day’s hangover. Washington’s selection of midnight snacks runs far deeper than ground beef and pizza. There’s chicken shawarma at Charcoal Town off U Street NW, kimchi slaw hot dogs at Anju in Dupont, and grilled cheese options at TallBoy in Shaw. And that’s just a small sample. Here are 22 places that satisfy late-night cravings. —updated by Gabe HiattRead More
D.C.’s Essential Late-Night Food
From pizza to sushi, it's all out there after hours
1. Osman & Joe's Steak 'n Egg Kitchen
Situated in a building that dates back to 1931, this classic diner is open 24 hours. A patty melt costs just $9.99, and a grilled-to-order, 8-ounce choice steak and eggs runs for $18.99. Plus, there are 20 flavors of milkshakes.
2. The Diner
Those seeking a true greasy spoon experience won’t find it at this polished modern diner in Adams Morgan, but they will find a solid 24/7 spot that serves bread pudding French toast sticks and a Ragin’ Cajun omelet with andouille sausage and shrimp. On top of a full breakfast menu, dinner and lunch options span from chili cheese fries (or tots) to a nacho burger and a Thanksgiving-style turkey platter.
3. Amsterdam Falafelshop (Multiple Locations)
Open until 4 a.m. on weekends in Adams Morgan and on 14th Street NW, Amsterdam Falafelshop is an obvious choice for anyone looking to soak up alcohol with fries and falafel balls. A wide range of dips and Middle Eastern condiments make it that much better.
4. Roy Boys (Multiple locations)
A couple blocks from the 9:30 Club, Roy Boys has a late-night menu that focuses on fried chicken and fresh oysters. There are four fried chicken sandwiches, including Nashville hot and mango gochujang varieties. It’s available from 10 p.m. to 1 a.m. Sunday through Thursday and 11 p.m. to 2 a.m.on Friday and Saturday. There’s a second location in Navy Yard.
5. Charcoal Town Shawarma (Multiple locations)
This converted rotisserie chicken joint right off U Street NW serves Jordanian chicken shawarma that rotates over coals on horizontal spits before being rolled in flatbread with pickles and garlicky toum spread. It’s open until 2 a.m. on Monday through Thursday and 4 a.m. on Friday and Saturday. There’s now a second location in Georgetown.
6. Lucky Buns
Hulking burgers and fried chicken sandwiches are classic late-night food, and Lucky Buns has versions that incorporate a number of Australian and Southeast Asian ingredients to satisfy adventurous eaters. There are also spice bags full of fried chicken tossed with peppers, onions, chiles, and Sichuan peppercorns. Dinner runs until 11 p.m. seven days a week, but from Thursday through Saturday there’s a late-night supper menu.
7. El Tamarindo
Adams Morgan workhorse El Tamarindo serves classic Salvadoran fare such as pupusas and chicken tamales until 2 a.m. from Sunday through Thursday, and until 5 a.m. on Fridays and Saturdays.
8. Ben's Chili Bowl
Ben's Chili Bowl serves iconic half-smoke sausages smothered in chili until 2 a.m. during the week and until 4 a.m. on Fridays and Saturdays. Just be prepared for a long line.
9. Ducinni's Pizza
Washington, DC 20009
The undisputed champ of Eater's very scientific late-night jumbo slice crawl, Ducinni's serves up oversized slices of pizza until 5 a.m.
This new Korean pub from the Chiko owners has a tight late-night menu at the first-floor bar that’s available until midnight Sunday through Thursday and closes at 1 a.m. on Friday and Saturday. Options include spicy Korean fried chicken with a white barbecue sauce, kimchi slaw hot dogs, and a spiralized fried potato on a stick with furikake and citrus aioli.
11. Astoria DC
The booths at this sibling cocktail bar to Copycat Co. make it feel less chaotic than its predecessor. Instead of late-night dumplings and skewers available on H Street, this Dupont hangout serves Sichuan dishes like chile wontons, stir-fried basil eggplant, mapo tofu, and water-boiled beef (all $14). The kitchen closes at 1 a.m. on Sunday through Thursday and 2 a.m. on Friday and Saturday.
12. Surfside Taco Stand
The downtown crowd can order shrimp tacos and quesadillas to-go at Surfside Taco Stand, open 24/7 and located just south of Dupont Circle.
The bar replaced Smoked & Stacked in Shaw with a goal to cater to late-night appetites with a simple menu of smoked wings and grilled cheese sandwiches. In the latter category, there’s an OG with just cheddar and a Reuben option with pastrami, Swiss, sauerkraut, and Russian dressing. Food is served until last call every night of the week.
14. Julia's Empanadas (Multiple Locations)
Open until 4 a.m. on Fridays and Saturdays in Dupont and Adams Morgan, Julia’s slings $5 empanadas. A couple standbys are a Chilean style — filled with beef, raisins, and olives — and a Bolivian saltena packed with chicken, potatoes, and green peas.
15. Horace & Dickie's Seafood Carryout
For a fried seafood fix, head to Horace & Dickie's on H Street NE. The longstanding carry-out is open until 2 a.m. from Monday through Saturday.
16. New Big Wong
New Big Wong dishes out late-night Cantonese and Sichuan cuisine until 5 a.m. on weekends and 3 a.m. on weeknights. In Washington, it’s known as a favorite hangout for chefs looking for a bite after work.
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17. Wiseguy NY Pizza
It’s not jumbo slice, but it is about as good as New York style pizza gets in D.C. Wiseguy serves up pizza, garlic knots, and chicken rolls until 5 a.m. on weekends.
18. The Hamilton
This sprawling restaurant in the Clyde's family boasts a late-night menu — available until 2 a.m. on Fridays and Saturdays, and until 1 a.m. every other night — featuring everything from mumbo sauce-covered chicken wings, and lettuce wraps to boozy milkshakes and fried crab cakes. There’s also half-priced sushi after 11 p.m.
19. Tune Inn Restaurant & Bar
Washington, D.C. 20003
For an assortment of bar snacks, breakfast platters, and half-pound burgers, head to Capitol Hill's iconic Tune Inn, which serves food until 2 a.m. on Fridays and Saturdays (about an hour before closing), and till 1 a.m. every other night.
20. Tiki TNT & Potomac Distilling Company
Mixologist-turned-rum distiller Todd Thrasher’s multi-level tiki bar at the Wharf development serves a late-night menu from 11 p.m. until close — last call is usually 1 a.m. — that includes $4 beers, $5 rum drinks, $6 snacks like tater tots or crystal shrimp dumplings, and $13 tiki wings or flatbreads.
21. Ravi Kabob House (Multiple locations)
The bone-in chicken karahi — a soulful Pakistani curry brimming with fresh ginger and hot peppers — provides a late-night jolt at a trusty trio of kebab houses within a couple square blocks of each other in Arlington. Expertly marinated kebabs and special samosas topped with tender, spied chickpeas are also recommended orders. Ravi is open — and packed — until 2 a.m. on Fridays and Saturdays and 1 a.m. from Monday through Thursday.
This suburban gem in Annandale serves a full range of Korean barbecue along with specialities like milky oxtail soup and cold buckwheat noodles. There’s also Japanese fare — teriyaki chicken, shrimp tempura, broiled salmon — and house-made sushi 24 hours a day.