November 7, 2017

Who stays out this late?

November 7, 2017

Who stays out this late?

There’s a reason San Francisco isn’t the town that earned the tagline as “the city that never sleeps.” That’s because it’s notorious for its exacting 2 a.m. closing time, when pubs and clubs invariably eject their patrons out from the bars and into their beds. Most restaurants stop serving by 11 p.m., even on weekend nights. Still, there are a few city spots that take pity on the hungry and restless, keeping their ovens warmed and doors open until well past normal dinner time.

This list of 38 restaurants, food counters, and bars presents some of the best late night meals the city has to offer — from the classic burger or tin-foil swaddled burrito to the more eclectic mussels doused in butter and nutella-glutted crepes. These places are sure to satisfy the late night appetite, whether your midnight inclination veers toward greasy countertops, slinky supper clubs, or classic hideaways. Some of these restaurants are cooking up Korean fried chicken or pastrami sandwiches until 2 a.m., while a hallowed few welcome the hungry as late as 4 a.m.

1 15 Romolo

What: This North Beach bar embraces its speakeasy heritage with cozy leather booths and a prohibition-era vibe that feels even more apropos after hours. The menu is suitable for both nightcaps and nourishment alike, featuring a bourbon-centric cocktail list best paired with kennebec fries and a short rib burger.

When: Daily until 1:30 a.m.


Stop by this cocktail lover’s paradise for hands-on midnight snacking paired with balanced craft cocktails up until 1 a.m daily — the ideal hour to chow down on lengua tacos and their “new f***ing burger,” which at this point is fully established as a competitor to their popular original pimento cheese burger.

Details: ABV’s kitchen stays open until 1 a.m every night of the week.

3 Alta CA

What: Daniel Patterson’s kitchen serves up a selective late night menu of cheeseburgers and Mary’s crispy chicken wings, in a high-ceilinged, airy atmosphere.

When: Thursday through Saturday until 1 a.m.

4 Arinell Pizza

What: The ideal spot for pizza after (or between) bars, Arinell keeps the party going with grungey music and atmosphere. Staff here are extremely metal and have ben known to loudly debate hardcore music style. Slices are solid and as close to New York as it gets around here. Cash only.

When: Until 2 a.m. Friday and Saturday, until midnight Wednesday through Thursday, until 10 p.m. other nights

5 Beretta

What: Beretta provides sliver-thin pizzas piled high with eggs, heirloom tomatoes, and pancetta, as well as creamy risottos and inventive cocktails to the sleepless all week long. Consult the secret menu for a nightcap of jello shots laced with Fernet.

When: Daily until 1 a.m.

6 Black Cat

What: Black Cat, a swanky and sophisticated two-story supper club, serves up boozy cocktails and savory bites, and, the best part, late night music until 1 a.m. all week long. This sleek addition to the Tenderloin recalls the neighborhood’s cultural roots with a basement lounge that regularly hosts live jazz. It’s the perfect soundtrack to accompany a midnight meal. Do note, though, that it’s difficult to sit downstairs (with the live music) without a reservation.

When: Daily until 1 a.m.

7 Box Kitchen

What: Burgers, waffles, and more from Box are tailor-made drunk person food, which makes sense, since Box is a takeout window next door to popular bar Tempest. Food is rich and aims to please, and while diners might not remember it too clearly in the morning, they’ll think back on it fondly. When: Until 1 a.m. nightly

8 Causwells

What: This Chestnut Street standby executes New American cuisine with a Southern twist, with dishes such as hush puppies, baby back ribs, and deviled eggs on the menu. Of course, the award-winning burger is an option, too.

When: Sunday through Wednesday until 11 p.m., Friday and Saturday until 12 a.m.

9 Crepes A-Go-Go

What: This SoMa food truck is the antidote to after-hours appetites craving both sweet and savory alike. Open as late as 4 a.m. on weekends, Crepes A Go Go serves up colossal crepes like the “King Samm,” filled with bananas, coconut, Nutella, and whipped cream or the “Good Morning America,” stuffed with cheddar cheese, bacon, and caramelized onions.

When: Sunday through Wednesday until 12 a.m., Thursday until 3 a.m., Friday and Saturday until 4 a.m.

10 Dapper Dog

What: True to its name, Dapper Dog’s hotdogs are some of the best-dressed dogs around. This fast food joint offers a myriad of options with which to slather your hot dog: guacamole, cream cheese, jalapenos, and of course, plenty of ketchup and mustard.

When: Monday through Wednesday until 11 p.m., Thursday and Sunday until 1 a.m., Friday and Saturday until 2:30 a.m.

11 Delarosa

What: Dine on a conventionally late-night Italian meal at this chic Roman-style pizzeria where meatballs, burrata bruschetta, and of course, plenty of pizza, are doled out in a casual, bustling interior.

When: Daily until 1 a.m. at 2175 Chestnut St.; Daily until 12 a.m. at 37 Yerba Buena Ln.

12 Esan Classic

The newest restaurant from the team behind Thai favorite Lers Ros, Esan Classic is serving up dishes from Northeastern Thailand. It’s open weeknights til 12 a.m., and 2 a.m. on Friday and Saturday for the night owls in need of a spicy pick-me-up. Garlic quail, fried pork intestines, and all the curries can be eaten here, or delivered.

13 Golden Boy Pizza

What: Golden Boy has been slinging its focaccia pizza in North Beach since the ‘70s and, luckily, you can still get a slice of clam and garlic even after 2 a.m. Though the late night line may seem interminable, it’s worth the wait.

When: Sunday through Thursday until 11:30 p.m., Friday and Saturday until 2:30 a.m.

14 Grubstake Diner

What: This San Francisco institution dishes up American classics and Portuguese fare alike from a kitchen housed inside a former railcar. A late night local’s favorite for decades, Grubstake’s future is uncertain — new owners are reportedly considering demolishing it for condos like the ones that now loom over it next door — so it might be wise to pay your late night respects sooner rather than later.

When: Daily until 4 a.m.

15 Ho’s Bootleg Tavern

What: This Asian-inflected American sports bar is a welcome late-night addition in the sleeper ‘hood of Russian Hill. The menu offers furikake popcorn, bacon wrapped meatballs, and fried chicken sandwiches past 2 a.m. on weekends, but those truly in the know opt for the Top Ramen offered after midnight doctored with chicken, egg, bok choy, and nori.

When: Tuesday to Thursday until 2 a.m., Friday and Saturday until 3 a.m.

16 It’s Tops Coffee Shop

What: A treasure of a tiny diner on Market Street, opened in 1935 and perfectly preserved. Sidle up to a classic red booth or a bar stool and order a milkshake and fries or their decadent waffle ice cream sundae.They don’t make ’em like this anymore. When: Open until 3 a.m. Wednesday through Saturday, 11 p.m. Sundays, and closed all other evenings

17 Joo Mak

What: Chicken hearts, beef liver, and fresh clams are all on the menu at this untraditional Inner Richmond izakaya, where sushi rolls and soju issue from the kitchen until 2 a.m. nightly.

When: Daily until 2 a.m.

18 kebab king

What: Don’t go for the atmosphere, but do go for tasty and satisfying late-night Indian eats. When: Sunday through Thursday until 1 a.m., Friday and Saturday until 2 a.m.

19 Loló

What: This vibrant Mission bar and restaurant prepares fresh, Jalisco-inspired small plates in a brassy, boisterous atmosphere. Snack on crispy fish tacos, seared pork belly salad, and grilled octopus past 10 p.m. all week long.

When: Monday through Thursday until 11 p.m., Friday and Saturday until 1 a.m.

20 Love N Haight

What: Satisfying, no fuss deli sandwiches in the lower Haight. These are the best late night, preventative medicine against a Molotov’s related hangover tomorrow. Some say the veggie “smoked duck” on Dutch Crunch is the correct order, while others say there is no correct order.

When: Open until 2 a.m. every night except Sunday, when it’s only open until 1 a.m.

21 Monk’s Kettle

What: This unassuming gastropub possesses a prodigious selection of Belgian and Trappist beers as well as a hearty food menu. Notable items include warm, pillowy pretzels, creamy macaroni and cheese, and savory steak sandwiches.

When: Daily until 1 a.m.

22 Monsieur Benjamin

What: If your evening taste veers towards sophisticated, grab a table at Monsieur Benjamin where French Laundry alum Corey Lee’s kitchen stays open until midnight dishing up plates of buttery escargot and steamed mussels.

When: Daily until 12 a.m.

23 Namu Stonepot

What: The eagerly awaited fast casual spinoff from the brothers Lee of of Namu Gaji fame, Namu Stonepot is open late for bibimbap, korean fried chicken, and sizzling okonomiyaki — definitely stick to the Namu classics. Without a lot of seating, it might be best to get it to go on the way home from that show at the Independent.

When: 1 a.m. nightly, closed Mondays

24 Nopa

What: Arrive late enough and you might be able to snag a barstool with your burger, if you’re lucky. This bustling, stylish restaurant is a late-night favorite, and serves up rustic American fare nightly.

When: Sunday through Thursday until 12 a.m., Friday and Saturday until 1 a.m.

25 Sam’s

What: This North Beach mom-and-pop is a welcome throwback to the good ol’ days — 1966, to be exact, when this burger joint opened its doors. It’s been flipping its famous burgers until 3 a.m. nightly to hordes of hungry Chinatown and North Beach partiers ever since.

When: Daily until 3 a.m.

26 Tacolicious

What: This cool and casual taco destination keeps a steady outpouring of tacos, fiery salsas, and guacamole issuing from the kitchen until 12 a.m. nightly.

When: Daily until 12 a.m. at 2250 Chestnut St. and 741 Valencia St.; Sunday through Wednesday until 11 p.m. and Thursday through Saturday until 12 a.m. at 1548 Stockton St.

27 Taqueria El Farolito

What: The witching hour for this Mission Street counter hotspot is after midnight, when it metes out burritos the size of bricks past 2 a.m. all week long — making it a late night pit stop for both the hungry and inebriated alike.

When: Sunday through Thursday until 2:30 a.m. and Friday and Saturday until 3:30 a.m.

28 The Brazen Head

What: Get a taste of old school San Francisco within the oak-paneled interior of this cozy Cow Hollow hideout where Prime Angus ribeye, beef bourguignon, and steamed mussels are served until 2 a.m. nightly.

When: Daily until 2 a.m.

29 The Crew

What: If you’re angling for Korean after hours, head to The Crew, a straightforward Sunset stopover providing fried chicken, kimchi fried rice, and spicy ramen to the sleepless well past dinner time.

When: Daily until 2 a.m.

30 The Halal Guys

What: East Coast chain known for its combo platters of beef and chicken over rice that’s best smothered in decadent white sauce and a splash of very spicy red sauce. Authentic, or even unique? Not at all. Enjoyable at any hour and open most of them? Completely.

When: Until 2 a.m. Sunday through Thursday and until 4 a.m. on Friday and Saturday

31 The Saratoga

This swanky Tenderloin spot has the late night food you crave, including dishes like fried chicken mole, Toga Tots with Fiscalini cheddar, chorizo, and scallions, and a bangin’ burger. Open ’til 12 a.m. weeknights, and ’til 1 a.m. Friday and Saturday.

32 The Taco Shop at Underdog’s

What:The game may have finished hours ago, but this favored sports bar and grill still has plenty of guacamole for the hungry.

When: Tuesday through Saturday until 11:45 p.m.

33 The Treasury

What: This dapper bar’s hors d’oeuvres menu presents caviar service alongside more pedestrian fare, such as popcorn and pigs in a blanket. It’s all to be devoured with gin or bourbon cocktails.

When: Daily until 12 a.m.

34 Tommy’s Joynt

What: Satisfy your late night carnivorous cravings with a trip to Tommy’s Joynt, a no-frills hofbrau that’s been doling out legendary portions of brisket, pastrami sandwiches, and lamb shanks since the ‘40s. Unless you’re up for a side of mashed potatoes and a drink served from a fully-stocked bar, vegetarians would do well to sit this one out.

When: Daily until 1:30 a.m.

35 Tosca Cafe

What: Not only does Tosca serve its entire menu in the dining room until 1 a.m., but it also has a barside five-item menu with Italian-inspired snacks to pair with its signature boozed-up cappuccino.

When: Daily until 1 a.m

36 Toyose

What: Despite its humble exterior (it is after all, housed in a former garage), Toyose is one big party. The late night Korean hideaway serves up hefty portions of Korean fried rice and saccharine soju cocktails until 2 a.m. for the rowdy.

When: Daily until 2 a.m.

37 Trick Dog

What: This eclectic Mission bar’s inventive menu changes bi-annually with past themes featuring dog calendars, conspiracy theories, and Chinese takeout. The latest iteration is politically-themed and offers a number of small plates suitable to the current electoral climate such as “Freedom Fries” and “Murica’s Nachos” (corn chips, Oaxacan cheese whiz, and tomatillo salsa).

When: Daily until 1:30 a.m.

38 Um Ma Son

What: There’s plenty of tofu soup to warm your stomach on a predictably chilly San Francisco evening at this Outer Richmond late-night staple.

When: Daily until 12 a.m.