You know that time of night, when the bars and clubs are dialing in their last calls. When the few remaining revelers are loitering outside, hailing cabs or looking for their dreary-eyed DDs. There’s usually nothing left to do but sit down on some comfy seats or huddle over some grub while sobering up. Or perhaps you want to mark the end of the night with something delicious, gossiping over the night’s events with friends, lovers, or both. The problem is, it’s not always easy to score a good meal late into the evening, so we’ve vetted out a few great spots in L.A. to hit after you’ve had that last drink.
5. Sasaya Izakaya
Generally, the Westside is bereft of decent places to hit up after a night of drinks, but Sasaya is a low-key Japanese pub that has some solid small bites that are good for sharing with your mates.
Consider the crab rice porridge on a chilly night, or a bowl of sukiyaki udon with slivers of beef and thick white noodles to temper the effect of the evening’s drinks. You could pop a few octopus-filled takoyaki, gooey on the inside, or go for some crispy teba-age, fried chicken wings covered in a spicy sauce.
4. Ruen Pair
With the burgeoning Hollywood bar scene, you always need a solid ethnic joint to wander into, and with Thai Town just steps away, why not land at Ruen Pair? The classic eatery features an expansive menu with all the familiar plates – curries, soups, and noodles. But for an extra kick, go for the crunchy morning glory or Chinese broccoli, nicely pan-fried and tossed with crispy pork belly.
Serve yourself a patty of the salted turnip omelet over white rice, or maybe even a super-funky soup of kouy jub, featuring salty offal meat, deep fried pork, pork blood, and liver in a dark, dense broth.
3. KeunGaMa Korean Restaurant
There are probably better Korean soup joints than this one in the culinary expanse of Koreatown, but none of them are open later than Keungama, where the bleeding overhead light sobers you up quicker than you can say “kimchi.”
Order a steaming hot bowl of suhl lung tang to warm you from the cocktail shivers, spooning in rice and green onions to give the soup heft and aromatics. Take a bite out of a chunk of pickled daikon radish or dunk kimchi into the broth to give it more flavor.
2. Fred 62
Hollywood has its fair share of late night spots, but it’s best to escape to this dimly lit all-night diner, where the fare might be predictable, but solidly done for a reasonable price.
Who can deny the excellence of the crispy Bearded Mr. Frenchy, a French toast crusted with corn flakes and doused with maple syrup? The Juicy Lucy is a classic, with a thick patty and melty cheese reminding you that all is good in the world.
1. Tacos Leo on Venice and La Brea
Everyone has notions about what the best tacos in L.A. might be, but to me, nothing beats the al pastor tacos from this gas station joint on weekend nights, where a taquero takes luscious shavings of packed pork meat (called the trompo), along with a slice of pineapple and layers it onto tortillas. Dress to your liking with some fresh sauces and cilantro and you’re money. See if you can eat less than five.
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