It's 2 a.m. and you're ravenously hungry – it's a scenario most of humanity has found themselves in at some point. Well you can always hit up the McDonald's drive-thru for a 20 piece Chicken McNugget. Lame! Or you can dig-in on some real grub at any of these spots for fantastic late night eats. Who said nothing good happens in Hollywood after midnight?
Roscoe's House of Chicken and Waffles: Chicken and waffles all on the same plate – that's Roscoe's in a nutshell. For about 12 bucks you get a half chicken, deep-fried to perfection, and a couple of their buttery good waffles. The "chick & waff combo" (their words, not mine!) also comes with hot sauce for the chicken and their famous maple syrup for the waffles. But no one's going to complain if you mix and match. President Obama is a fan of Roscoe's, so you know it's got to be good when the Leader of the Free World gives you a free plug. Roscoe's is open late night but it's better to get there before 2 a.m. Because it tends to get pretty crowded once the bars in Hollywood close.
1518 N Gower St., 90028; 323-466-7453
Mel's Drive-In: If you're on Hollywood Boulevard, it's hard to miss the giant neon sign that Mel's Drive-In is known for. It's big, we get it! But if it's past midnight and your stomach is rumbling, the sign will definitely serve as a guiding light. The burgers at Mel's are definitely the best thing on the menu. To keep your order simple, go with the Sunset burger, curly fries, and chocolate shake. But if you're in the mood for something different, then the tuna melt is pretty good too. Mel's is open 24 hours on the weekends but be warned, it gets pretty crowded on Fridays and Saturdays. So those expecting 5 star service should probably just go to a 5 star restaurant (which will probably already be closed).
1650 N. Highland Ave., 90028; 323-465-2111
Canter's Deli: It's one of the oldest restaurants in L.A., and use to be a favorite hangout of Jim Morrison, Janis Joplin, and other 60s rockers looking to grab a bite after a late night show on the Strip. Since 1931 Canter's Deli on Fairfax has been serving up everything from corned beef and pastrami sandwiches, to delicious meatloaf just like Mom used to make. They even have full bakery, with cheesecake, babka, cookies, brownies, cupcakes, and just about everything else that would qualify as sweet, baked in-house twice a day. Canter's can get a little pricey (look to drop about $14 for a reuben sandwich), but it's still a great spot if you're around the Fairfax District late night.
419 N. Fairfax Ave., 90036; 323-651-2030
Pink's Hot Dogs: Whether you've just moved to Hollywood, or are one of those rare natives, it's safe to say you've probably visited Pink's at some point. From the oversized onion rings to the bacon chili cheese dog, just about everything on the menu at Pink's is good and greasy. Just expect a really long wait – even if it's nearing 2 a.m. Because if there's one thing Pink's is known for aside from its food, it's their incredibly long lines.
709 N. La Brea Ave., 90038; 323-931-4223
Greco's Pizzeria: It's not the greatest pizza in the world but if it's after hours and you're just looking for something quick and easy, then Greco's is your best bet. Pizza slices are huge (much bigger than the paper plate they come on), and cost between $3 and $5. Greco's also has gyros and Philly cheese steaks, but those take a little longer to make. It gets pretty crowded once the clubs empty out, so you're better off grabbing a slice of pepperoni to go.
6400 Hollywood Blvd., 323-464-8212
Tommy's: For a late night burger in Hollywood, Tommy's is still your best bet. The Mega Combo – triple chili cheeseburger, chili cheese fries, and an extra large drink – is still the best (and greasiest) option on the menu. This particular Tommy's is located right off the 101's Hollywood Boulevard Exit, so it's perfect if you're coming from the Valley and in the mood for a late night snack. Since it's open 24 hours they also serve breakfast.
5873 Hollywood Blvd., 90028; 213-389-1682
The 101: Walk into The 101 on Franklin Avenue and you'll swear you've been transported into one of those retro-style coffee shops straight off the set of Mad Men. From the stone walls to the brown leather booths, everything about The 101 says 1960s, even the prices! The 101 is open until 3 a.m. so if you have a hankering for a late night (or early morning) breakfast, most items on the menu go for under $10. And if you're one of those people with a sweet tooth, the waffle brown sundae is not to be missed. Yep, the name pretty much says it all.
6145 Franklin Ave., 90028; 323-467-1175
The Waffle: OK it's a Friday night in Hollywood, all the bars are closed, and Roscoe's is packed. Where do you go? Well fear not hungry partier because a half a block east of Sunset and Vine you'll find The Waffle. The Waffle has been open for nearly five years and has quickly established itself as a go-to spot for late-night guilty pleasure food in Hollywood. If you're a fan of spice, you'll definitely want to order the jalapeno waffle. As an added bonus, it comes with fried chicken and sawmill gravy. But if sweet is more you're style, then the red velvet waffle with frosting will surely be calling your name. The Waffle is open until 3 a.m. on Fridays and Saturdays.
6255 W Sunset Blvd.; 323-465-6901
Cactus Tacos: Tacos late at night – have four words in the English language ever sounded as good? If you've ever driven down Vine Street, you've probably noticed the big green sign affirming Cactus Tacos as "#1 in Hollywood." This shameless promotion can be a little off-putting to most people. But as far as Mexican food goes, they're pretty darn close to being number one in my book. It doesn't look like much from the outside, but Cactus is one of the better places for Mexican food in Hollywood, let alone the city. Tacos are cheap at $1.50, and come in a variety of different meats, including carne asada, chicken, and fish. There's even a free salsa bar outside, just in case you feel like adding a little extra kick to your tacos. Cactus is open until 3 a.m. every Monday through Thursday, and 4 a.m. on the weekends.
950 Vine St., 90038; 323-464-5865
Skooby's: Hot dogs are a given when you're looking for something greasy to eat late at night. But when the lines at Pink's are just too long, there's always Skooby's on Hollywood Boulevard. And there's almost never a wait here! Since 2002, Skooby's has been grilling up some of the best dogs in L.A., like their famous bacon cheddar dog. Get it with a side of chili cheese fries and you've got yourself a delicious meal for under $10. Skooby's open until midnight, seven days a week.
6654 Hollywood Blvd., 90028; 323-468-3647
Vim Thai-Chinese Restaurant: If you've never had seafood soup than Vim, located in East Hollywood, should be the first place you try it. It comes with big pieces of shrimp and mussels, and has just enough spiciness so that it's not too overwhelming (which is always a good thing). Their BBQ beef must also be sampled, as well as their shrimp fried rice. When it's all said and done, an entire meal for two, including tip, should cost no more than $40. Vim is open until 10 p.m. seven days a week.
5132 Hollywood Blvd., 90027; 323-662-1017
The Hungry Cat: It's kind of like a high-end seafood restaurant, without the high-end prices. After all, how many other places can you get a lobster dinner for less than $30? Not to mention, everything at The Hungry Cat is fresh, from their peel n' eat shrimp ($20 for ½ lb.), to their marinated mussels (½ lb. for $8). Those that don't like seafood will want to try the pug burger. It comes with bacon, blue cheese, and avocado. The Hungry Cat is open until midnight every Thursday thru Saturday, and until 11 p.m. every other day of the week.
1535 Vine St., 90028; 323-462-2155
Village Pizzeria: Village Pizzeria is one of the few pizza joints in Hollywood that actually knows how to make a decent New York style slice. Their meatballs and marinara sauce are all made fresh and in house, and the best part is you can order a slice right at the counter and have it in your hand before you pay the cashier. Now that's NYC fast! And just in case you're feeling a bit adventurous, try their chicken parmesan hero. Be warned, you may need to sit down to eat this one.
6363 Yucca St., 90028; 323-790-0763
25 Degrees: Located inside the Roosevelt Hotel, 25 Degrees is like a classic burger joint done L.A.-style. The place has a swanky, old-Hollywood feel to it, with French wallpaper and crystal chandeliers. Their drink menu also features a long list of exotic wines. But let's face it. People come here for the burgers. For $12 you can order any of their three burger options – adequately named the #1, #2 and #3 – or just build your own. They also serve grilled cheese, salads, hot dogs, milk shakes, and sweet potato fries. For $4, they may be the sweetest potato fries you've ever had (pun definitely intended).
7000 Hollywood Blvd., 90028; 323-785-7244
El Gran Burrito: It's one of the few places in the area that never closes. That's good. But even better is the fact that all their tacos are a $1, with most of their burritos going for less than $6. Aside from the food, El Gran Burrito is also known for their self-service salsa bar, which includes three types of salsa – green, red, and avocado – as well as spicy carrots, cilantro and lines. Just be sure to bring cash. El Gran Burrito does not accept credit cards.
4716 Santa Monica Blvd., 90029; 323-665-8720
CONES Rotisserie Wraps: For quick and easy wrap late at night in Hollywood, CONES is your best bet. Their Mediterranean-style wraps come with either chicken or beef, and are only $5. They've also got milkshakes too. Try their banana-flavored Shake Dubai, and you may never walk into a Cold Stone Creamery again. Why? All of the shakes at CONES are made with a little something called fruit – no ice cream, and no sugar is added. That being said, you probably won't find a healthier fast food option in all of Hollywood. CONES is open until 4 a.m. everyday, except Sunday.
6323 Hollywood Blvd., 90028; 323-466-0884