If you've worked up a mighty appetite after a big night out and need that perfect combination of grease and salt, try these spots for late-night and morning-after meals.
Late-night: 2Red Lounge
134 S. Highland Ave., East Liberty; 412/362-5800, redroomcafe.net
If you’re craving upscale late-night food, try this swanky lounge set adjacent to the Red Room restaurant on Centre Avenue. The high-end cocktails are a good match for the industrial-chic décor, luxurious sofas, intimate semi-circle booths and handsome bar-and so is the food. Whether you want to snack on appetizers or to try the excellent Spanish cheese plate, the bar menu has delicious small plates to pair with your pomepolitan or mojito. Before Red Room closes for the night, you can also order anything off that menu. Bonus: On busy weekend nights, it doesn’t take a special order to enjoy a big serving of great people-watching. Thurs.-Sat., open until 2 a.m.; Mon.-Wed., until 11 p.m.; Sun., until 8 p.m.
Late-night: Cambod-Ican Kitchen
1701 E. Carson St., South Side; 412/381-6199, cambodicankitchen.com
Everyone who loves East Carson’s watering holes knows that Cambod-Ican Kitchen, with its fusion of Cambodian and American food (hence the name), stays open into the wee hours. First operating out of an aluminum truck parked at 1607 E. Carson St., the restaurant has since moved its operation inside a nearby building, and late-night crowds line up to come inside. Try the hugely popular chicken kebab slathered in Cambod-Ican’s signature Moon Sauce-or, have it wrapped in pita if carbs are what you crave (for under five bucks) and take it along on your continuing South Side adventure. The large menu has plenty of other options, too, including Cambodian noodle soup similar to the traditional breakfast soup called pho. Tues.-Sat., 5 p.m.-4 a.m.
Morning After: Zenith
Corner of South 26th and Sarah streets, South Side; 412/481-4833, zenithpgh.com
After a long night of surreal adventures, why break the mood? Opt for the area’s most surreal Sunday brunch and head over to Zenith, where the crazily cluttered antiques-shop setting, groaning tables of bright vegetarian food and crowd of slowly waking South Side hipsters might make you think you’re still dreaming. Show up around opening time to avoid long lines or risk missing the buffet’s famous cakes in flavors such as coconut-almond, chocolate-cranberry or lime-ginger. The $10 price tag includes the buffet plus a vegetarian entree and coffee or tea-meaning that you can chow down and still save enough cash to get you through the rest of the week. Sunday brunch, 11 a.m.-2:30 p.m. Also open Thurs.-Sat., 11:30 a.m.-8:30 p.m.
Morning After: Pamela’s
3703 Forbes Ave., Oakland; 412/683-4066
5527 Walnut St., Shadyside; 412/683-1003
60 21st St., Strip District; 412/281-6366
232 North Ave., Millvale; 412/821-4655
5813 Forbes Ave., Squirrel Hill; 412/422-9457
There’s no need to re-invent the wheel (or the omelet) the morning after a night of sinful imbibing. That’s why, thank goodness, Pittsburgh has Pamela’s. With its five locations and iconic reputation, who among us hasn’t gratefully collapsed into a chair and awaited that bottomless cup of coffee at one point or another? And get that coffee you will. You can also get the famous thin flapjacks with their plate-swamping size and crisp, buttery edges-with optional fillings that include strawberry, brown sugar and sour cream or decadent banana-chocolate chip. You’ll find egg options galore and great hangover hash browns begging for ketchup. Sure, there’s often a line at the door. But in this case, rewards come to those who wait.