When the weekdays seem like a constant cycle of exhausting tasks and chores, there’s no doubt you might be hitting the hay before midnight. But as the weekend rolls around, the stress of life rolls away, making the nights perfect for going out, trying new foods, and meeting up with friends and family. Whether you’re craving some delicious food after a night out or find yourself in the mood for a late dinner, you can’t go wrong with grabbing a bite at any of these lively spots.
If you’re grabbing a late-night meal with friends, the food should be appetizing, sure, but the restaurant’s atmosphere is just as important. At Palette 22, you can feast on distinctive tapas and small plates while you’re surrounded by eccentric and youthful people, music, and art. Whether you’re starting your evening here or ending it, this trendy restaurant will make for a spirited night. 4053 Campbell Ave., Arlington
There’s something about eating pizza after midnight that makes any night a better one. This local spot brings you just about any pizza you could crave after hours, along with an impressive selection of calzones and strombolis. And with their doors open until 3:45 a.m. on the weekends, you can enjoy your favorite slice of pizza into the wee hours of the night. 11143 Lee Hwy., Fairfax
Craving delicious late-night Mexican food? Look no further than Alexandria’s very own Don Taco. After a night of fun in the city, you can rewind and recharge with a delicious taco or a filling burrito at this cozy taqueria on historic King Street. With more than 20 taco choices and a wide selection of vegetarian and gluten-free options, Don Taco will be your new favorite spot. 808 King St., Alexandria
While Thai food might not seem like the first choice for a late-night bite, give Tiki Thai a chance and you’ll probably change your mind. This tropical spot is open until 2 a.m. on the weekends, and it even has its own specific late-night menu. Their diverse appetizers and eccentric $10 drinks will definitely have you coming back again and again. 12100 Sunset Hills Rd., Ste. 107, Reston
This warm and welcoming restaurant is the perfect spot for grabbing some drinks and indulging in your favorite late-night comfort foods. Bear Branch Tavern, open until 2 a.m. every day, has an extensive menu that will meet anyone’s lunch or dinner needs. The late-night menu is just as robust, serving familiar favorites like beer cheese & pretzels and fried wings. 133 Maple Ave. E., Vienna
You can always count on Silver Diner to satisfy your late-night craving. This NoVA staple offers classic diner foods, like burgers and milkshakes, and then some. Open until midnight during the week and until 1 a.m. on the weekend, it can’t hurt to add fries and a burger to your night. Multiple locations
For more stories like this, subscribe to our Food newsletter.