The Best Late Night Restaurants In Philly

There’s more to late-night food than sad Wawa pizza.
The Paulie Gee's Soul Slice's bar.

photo credit: NICOLE GUGLIELMO

This guide is for the insomniacs, the people who walk their alligators while the rest of the city sleeps, and everyone who’s ravenous after more than a couple of citywides. You may not find the most memorable food at these diners, takeout spots, and bars. But you might be able to sing Celine Dion karaoke and split an order of wings with a stranger. That in itself is an unforgettable thing. 


Bar Food

University City

$$$$Perfect For:Big GroupsCasual Weeknight DinnerCheap EatsDrinks & A Light BiteEating At The BarLate Night Eats
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Gojjo on Baltimore Avenue in West Philly has a 2am closing time, cheesesteaks, and Ethiopian food. This means you’ll see tipsy people around the bar trying to order their third round and maybe someone who hasn’t left the building in seven years watching a Sixers game when they play on the West Coast. The music can get a little cranked up, but that’s what we expect from a place that stays open through prime infomercial hours. You may even join the makeshift dance floor after one bite of a berbere-spiced cheesesteak.

photo credit: Royal Tavern

At the reopened version of this Queen Village standby, old regulars mix with new ones. A classic movie might be playing on one TV and a game on the other. And the kitchen, which closes at 1am, is a saving grace for anyone who deserves more than drive-thru nuggets. This is a good place to sit down if you want dim lighting, reliably good wings, and a spicy burger—but not the messy late-night scene of a dive. 

South Philly’s Taqueria La Prima stays open until 4 am daily, and they make some of our favorite tacos in town. Order ahead to avoid a line of people getting off the graveyard shift and talking sh*t about their boss' body odor. Our go-to usually includes al pastor, carne asada, or pollo, all of which taste even better after a fun night out or when you’re so sleepy you couldn’t possibly operate a knife and a fork. 

Center City isn’t one of the first neighborhoods that come to mind when we think about late-night options. But this bodega is open 24 hours a day—a fact that maybe local bargoers, guys with horrible pickup lines, and security guards already know. There are about 100 things on the menu, ranging from juices, breakfast, deli sandwiches, salads, and chocolate cake. The fridges are heavy on beer and sodas, and you can pick up fruit and coffee in case you need to be revived by something other than an overstuffed reuben.

Liberty Bell Diner is in a strip mall in the Northeast serving a classic diner menu. The most important detail is that they have breakfast every hour we want to eat it: 24 hours a day. Expect to see local sports paraphernalia, photos of happy Mayfair families on the walls, and people eating burgers, pancakes, and plate-sized omelets before or after their workdays.

If you’re serious about karaoke, then you’re legally obligated to visit Voix Karaoke Lounge in the Northeast, drink tequila, and watch a friend destroy your favorite Whitney Houston ballad. Not only does this karaoke bar have the best song list and private room set-up in the Philly area, but they’re open until 2am on the weekends and make surprisingly good chicken wings and dumplings. Neon lights flash. Liquor flows. And for a brief moment, you’ll get a glimpse of what your life would be like if you were the star of a musical. 

Come to Kelliann’s in Fairmount during any game night and expect it to be packed. Stick around until they close at 2am, and it will still be crowded, there will just be less screaming about the scoreboard. This bar has all the markings of a rowdy Irish pub: four-leaf clovers on the door, a long dark wood bar, and friends who have been saying, “we’ll leave after this song” for an hour. Come for some of our favorite wings in town.

photo credit: GAB BONGHI

Philadelphians have been lining up at this North Philly corner shrimp spot ever since it opened in 1966, and they’ve been getting batches until they close at 2am ever since. The neighborhood seafood spot is where you’ll see women still in their party dresses or your cousin in pajamas, all colliding for the sake of seafood. Getting your hands on a dozen of these golden, crispy, and sweet shrimp fresh out of the fryer will leave you feeling more triumphant than finding an open parking spot on your first whip around Broad and Wyoming.

This East Passyunk wine and beer bar has a short food menu that’s great when you’re sober or when your body is 60% Jack Daniels. Things start and end with pickles, french fries, and a very good burger. At the very least, order the burger. It costs $6 and tastes better than 90% of burgers in the city. It’s also a known Philadelphia aphrodisiac. Sit here and get flirty with a stranger you hope is still hot tomorrow.

Tai Lake in Chinatown serves great Cantonese-style dishes to groups of friends and families until 12am. When it’s late at night, they’ll all be here for the same reasons as you: avoiding going home and watching TV with a spread of Peking duck, salted fish fried rice, and ginger scallion lobster 

Masala Kitchen has two Philly locations, but only the 11th and Walnut Street location serves their Indian street food menu through 12am on the weekdays and 3am on the weekends. There are several kati rolls on the menu, along with handmade tawa roti packed with chicken or beef, and platters that come with rice and pita bread to make wraps. It’s all surprisingly delicious based on the fast-casual setting and chaotic location (nearby lots of bars).

There aren’t many places in this city with great cajun food, and more specifically, cajun food that’s available until 1am. But Khyber Pass Pub is here to answer your prayers on a night when your friend wants to complain about paper straws or you want to see a show in their upstairs music venue space. Other than the Khyber gumbo, which is meaty and just a little spicy, they also have good po’boys and vegetarian food on the menu. 

With orange tables and someone tossing dough in the air like it’s a frisbee, Paulie Gee’s Soul Slice looks like a classic pizzeria you could find in any East Coast city. The difference here is the slice shop has a full bar, a pool table, records for sale, and a little area where you can play Duck Hunt on an old tube TV. And they’re open until 2am. Get a Hellboy Square—the upside-down Sicilian pie comes loaded with sweet tomato sauce, mozzarella, pecorino romano, pepperoni, and hot honey—and try to tune out that guy next to you talking about hitchBOT.

In case your going-out routine is starting to drag, head to Clock Bar in North Philly. This is the kind of place where you can have a night you’ll reminisce about when you’re 80. People dance, eat shrimp, and make new friends. There’s a good chance you’ll see someone who’s three Long Islands deep use their well-seasoned crab legs as props in a Beyoncé dance-off. Clock Bar is open until 1am throughout the week and 1:30am on the weekends.

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