If you’ve been hitting the bars all night and you’re in desperate need of a bite to eat, don’t—we repeat—DO NOT stop at a fast food joint. Yes, it’s late. And yes, you’ve already made a bunch of bad decisions tonight. But eating subpar food doesn’t have to be another item on that list.
Instead of settling for a walk through the drive through, stop into one of these local spots offering amazing eats (almost) all night long.
Butcher & the Rye (2 a.m.)
During the day, getting into this popular Cultural District restaurant can feel nearly impossible. During off-hours, though, you’re likely to grab a seat without much of a wait. With an extensive whiskey list to choose from and a number of hearty, filling meals, Butcher and the Rye is the perfect place for a nightcap. The restaurant’s interior provides a rustic, low-lit environment where it seems almost natural to be awake during the wee hours of the morning.
Dish Osteria (2 a.m.)
When you think about late-night South Side, you probably think about bars, bars and more bars. However, if you’re in the market for a meal after dark, Dish Osteria will be more than happy to provide. The food, traditional creations laced with creative touches, is always delicious and filling. If sharing a bottle of wine late into the evening sounds more appealing than downing shots, Dish is the perfect spot.
Fuel & Fuddle (2 a.m.)
You’ll find this cozy diner tucked neatly onto Oakland Avenue in one of Pittsburgh’s biggest college neighborhoods. As its name suggests, the menu features food to keep you fueled, plus a number of craft beers to get you fuddled. The variety of beers, with intriguing names like Orange Neon Gypsy and You’re Killing Me S’mores, will keep you coming back at all hours of the night.
The Library (2 a.m.)
If you need to get some studying done, you’ll want to avoid this particular library. But when it’s time for a study break, round-up your friends and get to The Library. Don’t worry, they’ll be open long after other restaurants have already closed. Even better, many of the menu items are named after books, so you get the unusual opportunity to order an Oedipus Rex or a Men Who Stare At Goats. And, bonus: from 9 p.m. through 1 a.m., you’ll get half off all small plates.
Local Bar & Grill (2 a.m.)
Local’s dining area seems made for late nights. With an industrial theme featuring exposed brick walls, gears adorning the ceiling and a garage door that opens onto East Carson Street if the weather allows, the restaurant is an inviting oasis in a sea of bars. Sit down, order a pitcher for you and your friends and browse the menu for the perfect midnight pizza. You won’t be disappointed.
Sienna Mercato (2 a.m.)
At Sienna Mercato you’ll find a wide variety of foods for all tastes, a litany of cocktails, and a rooftop beer garden. The third level of the restaurant, called Il Tetto, serves a special bar menu (and trust us, this isn’t your typical bar food) and has a number of beers on draft. If your late-night adventures take you to the Cultural District, you’ll get the chance to gaze out over the twinkling lights blanketing the sleeping city. If that doesn’t sound like a romantic date idea, we don’t know what is.
Primanti’s (2 a.m.)
This list wouldn’t be complete without a true ‘Burgh classic. Wolfing down a steak sandwich piled with french fries is the perfect way to end a fun night out. If you’re with friends, why not order a pitcher of Yuengling and go out with a bang? Sometimes, all you want is a plate filled with carbs and greasy goodness, and sometimes you want that plate in the middle of the night. Don’t worry, Primanti’s has you covered.
Butterjoint (12 a.m.)
If your late-night cravings include locally sourced alcohol, North Oakland’s Butterjoint will be sure to satisfy. It’s a step up from the Friday night bar crawl scene, and instead of stumbling aimlessly down Forbes Avenue, you can kick back and enjoy a beverage by Wigle Whiskey, Arsenal Cider House or the East End Brewery, all of which perfectly complement the New American-themed menu. The burgers and pierogies are particularly popular, and the hushed atmosphere will be a refreshing change of pace.
Ritter’s Diner (24 hours)
If you haven’t been to Ritter’s, have you really been to Pittsburgh? This greasy-spoon staple has fed many late-night wanderers of Baum Boulevard and provided breakfast for college students fending off hangovers in the wee hours of the morning. If you’re craving classic diner fare including stuffed pork chops, hot sandwiches and piles of delicious French fries (who isn’t?), then this beloved ‘Burgh spot is just right for you. Pop a few quarters in the jukebox, listen to some old-time rock-and-roll and enjoy the great food at a great price.
The Original Hot Dog Shop (1:30 a.m.)
Whether you know this popular one-stop hot dog shop as The Original, Essie’s or The Dirty O, there’s no doubt that this is the place to score the best dogs – and fries – in town. Speaking of fries, at The O, they’re cooked twice over in peanut oil and poured in hearty measures on your plate. The dogs range from ordinary ketchup-and-mustard-topped meals to Parmesan-stuffed masterpieces, and you can even grab a few beers while you’re there.
Caliente (2 a.m.)
If you find yourself in Bloomfield late at night and craving some pizza and beer, stop into Caliente. There are dozens of beers on tap and always a new brew to try, whether you like IPAs or chocolate oatmeal stout. Your mouth will be watering once you see the gourmet pizzas offered on the menu, including Thai Chicken, Steak Deluxe and Buffalo Chicken. No pies catching your eye? Go ahead and design your own. Or skip the pizza altogether and grab a sandwich, a calzone, or fries instead.