Big-City Chefs' Favorite Late-Night Restaurants
What to do when you're visiting a big city and the late-night munchies hit? We asked top chefs around the country for their favorite off-duty spots.
Curtis Stone, chef/owner of Maude, Los Angeles
"Lucques, Animal, and, if it's late, The Church Key. In a time crunch, I’ll hit Pinches Tacos, a hole-in-the-wall Mexican shack on Sunset. It’s good for a cheap and cheerful round of tacos and a wind-down beer. I don't go out drinking all night after service anymore, though. My wife would kill me if I was drinking all night and my days start very early.”
"One of my favorite places to go late night is the NoMad Bar. It has one of the best cocktail and spirit programs in NYC and an amazing wine list to match. I usually start with one of my favorite drinks, 'The Montauk' (navy strength gin, carpano antica sweet vermouth, chambery blanc vermouth, punt e mes, peychaud's bitters). I also like to get a mix of foods from their menu, most often their crudite with chive cream, the dry aged burger, and fries."
Nina Compton, chef/owner of Compère Lapin, New Orleans
“That’s an easy one – Gene’s Po Boys! I always get the hot sausage and cheese. Plus it’s open 24 hours so I don’t have to worry about it being closed when I leave the restaurant.”
Kevin Gillespie, chef/owner of Gunshow in Atlanta and Revival in Decatur, Georgia
“My favorite late-night restaurant is Krystal. I guess because it’s nostalgic for me. In my mind, the only time to go to Krystal is between 11:30 pm and 2:30 am. The burgers just taste better then! And I’m not saying you have to be drunk. I have done this many times completely sober. I like the cheese Krystal and I always buy a sack full (12). I don’t eat them all. You just eat until you feel bad about yourself – anywhere from four to 11.”
“My favorite spot to go to on my day off is Kon Chau. It’s an old-school dim sum spot in a strip mall. The soy sauce pan friend noodles (order them extra crispy) is one of my favorite dishes in the city.”
Jose Mendin, restaurateur and partner of Pubbelly, Pubbelly Sushi, PB Station and Pawn Broker, Miami
"The Anderson Miami: The fried chicken sandwich with dill pickles at the Anderson is awesome; I mean who doesn’t want a delicious fried chicken sandwich after a long night of service? Food/cooking can be so complicated, what makes this great is its simplicity.
Yakko San: I love the chicken livers with chives. I am a fan of chicken livers in general, but these are crispy, the sauce is great and the bean sprouts add a bit of 'crunch dimension.'
Bay Club at Lucali Pizzeria: I don’t often indulge in pizza, but when I do I go for the everything pie pizza at Lucali. It is loaded with artichokes, hot peppers and Portobello mushrooms. The crust is super flavorful and the pie automatically scores points because the chef built the brick oven by hand."