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Late-Night Eats: Charleston

Libby Wiersema Libby Wiersema
Libby Wiersema lived in California and Alabama before settling in South Carolina 38 years ago, where she's covered the state's best culinary offerings and tells the stories behind the food.
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A fun night in Charleston often goes hand-in-hand with the late-night hungries. With so much to see and do, it is not unusual for the appetite to awaken just as you are strolling back to your hotel after a play, concert or evening spent busting moves on a local dance floor.

But even when the clock is rolling over to the next day, Charleston has you covered.

Here is a sampling of some of your best bets for snagging an after-hours snack or meal.


The Belmont  

house-made pop tarts and a cocktail at The Belmont
House-made pop tarts go great with cocktails for a late-night treat at The Belmont.

511 King Street
Open daily 5 p.m. to 2 a.m.; kitchen closes at midnight

The warm, sophisticated environment of The Belmont cocktail lounge is just right for a pre-bedtime drink, charcuterie grazing and tucking into a warm, house-made pop tart.


South Street Cheesesteaks and Subs  

119 Spring Street, Suite 2
Open daily 9 a.m. to 3 a.m. Note: Knock on the door to place your order.

The owner’s Philly roots infuse the fare at this small but bustling take-out-only shop. South Street Cheesesteaks prides itself on authenticity. Think house-made rolls, freshly cut beef, grilled onions and that gooey, cheesy “Wiz” (or provolone and other cheeses, depending on your preference). Of course, you can customize your beef or chicken Philly.


John King Grill and Dueling Piano Bar

plate of loaded fries topped with bacon and cheese at John King Grill
Dueling pianos and loaded fries are a winning late-night combo at John King Grill.

428 King Street
Open daily at 11 a.m.; kitchen open until midnight Sunday through Thursday and until 1 a.m. Friday and Saturday.

Dueling pianos aside, John King’s is your late-night hotspot for juicy burgers, loaded fries, wings, wraps and more.


Juanita Greenberg’s Nacho Royale 

439 King Street
Open daily 11 a.m. to 2 a.m.

A long-time King Street mainstay, Juanita Greenberg’s Nacho Royale is where bleary-eyed Charlestonians and visitors go for affordable Mexican-ish food made to order and served up fast. Nachos topped with everything from tofu to chorizo to shrimp are popular palate-pleasers.



Double stacked cheeseburger at Bumpa's Burger
Slay your late-night hungries with a Bumpa's Burger.

5 Cumberland Street
Kitchen open from 11:30 a.m. to midnight Sunday, Monday and Wednesday and 11:30 to 2 a.m. on Friday and Saturday; closed on Tuesday

At Bumpa’s, the bar fare has been thoughtfully conceived by a skilled staff of kitchen wizards. But one menu item is a clear favorite of the late-night ravenous: the Big Bumpa Burger, a crafty, elevated spin on the classic Big Mac.


Gilroy’s Pizza Pub   

353 King Street
Open 11 a.m. to 3 a.m. Sunday through Thursday and 11 to 4 a.m. Friday and Saturday.

Charleston’s oldest pizza joint, Gilroy’s has been addressing the late-night munchies of college crowd, locals and visitors for more than three decades. This is dive eating at its greasy best. There’s nothing like a hot-from-the-oven, cheesy, pepperoni pizza to cap off a rousing good time in downtown Charleston.


A.C.’s Bar and Grill  

Interior of A.C.'s Bar & Grill in Charleston
A.C.'s Bar & Grill is a favorite haunt of the late-night crowd.

467 King Street
Kitchen open from 11 a.m to 1:30 a.m. Monday through Saturday and 4 p.m. to 1:30 a.m. on Sunday        

Burgers, nachos, chili, fries and sandwiches—including the toasty warm New England oven grinder stuffed with Italian salami, pepperoni and provolone—draw the night owls to this unassuming locals’ favorite.


Moe’s Crosstown Tavern  

714 Rutledge Avenue
Kitchen open daily from 11 a.m. to 1 a.m.

A vintage pub located near Hampton Park, Moe’s Crosstown Tavern is a local haunt for great bar grub. Burgers, wraps, sandwiches and such are guaranteed to quiet your tummy monster.


The Royal American   

chicken wings at Royal American
Wings and other savory things are part of the late-night menu at The Royal American.

970 Morrison Drive
Kitchen open daily from 11 a.m. to 1 a.m.

The Royal American serves up all kinds of goodies well into the night: house-made beef jerky, house-ground beef burgers, patty melts and spicy muffalettas. Always in the spotlight, the Disco Fries— smothered in black pepper brown gravy, cheese sauce, bacon, scallions and jalapenos—will hustle and snap their way across your taste buds.


Pizzeria di Giovanni

40 N Market Street
Open 11 a.m. to midnight Sunday through Wednesday and from 11 a.m. to 3 a.m. Thursday through Saturday

Convenient to revelers strolling the vicinity of Charleston City Market, Pizzeria di Giovanni is a must-stop for late-night pizza done right. Got a crowd? Everybody can get their fill when they take a seat at the “home of 28-inch pizza!”

Libby Wiersema
Libby Wiersema lived in California and Alabama before settling in South Carolina 38 years ago, where she's covered the state's best culinary offerings and tells the stories behind the food.