Drunk Munchies Around the World (Slideshow)
Served with a sweet or savory filling, these fried stall snacks are a late-night staple in Brazil. Said to have originated as a South American adaptation of fried wontons introduced by Japanese immigrants, the present-day pastel can include anything from ground meat and mozzarella or heart of palm and cream cheese, to jam, chocolate, or banana for those with a sweeter tooth.
A great divide exists when it comes to chips (French fries) in the United Kingdom. As far as Southern Britons are concerned, the way to eat fries is with salt and/or vinegar, whereas in the North and in Scotland late-night hunger is satisfied only with gravy, or “chippie sauce.” The British civil conflict over proper chip consumption doesn’t end there: London’s most popular pick is mayonnaise, Wales prefers curry, and all around HP sauce (or brown sauce) is a popular addition.
deep-fried flat bread, làngos is simple enough to cater to every preference,
with common add-ins including cheese, sour cream, sausage, ham, jam or
confectioner’s (powdered) sugar. A Hungarian (and Austrian) fast-food staple,
locals say that street vendors often offer up the best version.
is the universally glorified drunk food, but the ever-innovative Swedes have
taken the Turkish phenomenon a step further and slapped it on top of pizza.
Statistically the most popular pizza topping in Sweden (especially among the
late-night orders), the typical recipe calls for tomato sauce, cheese, onion,
fefferoni peppers, kebab meat and, of course, kebab sauce. The best part? You
can order it so that the kebab pizza is folded prior to baking to resemble a
Chinese translation for barbecue, shao kao stalls line the busy streets of
Chinese cities offering out flame-grilled skewered meats and vegetables heavily
seasoned with spices like cumin or five-spice powder. The ultimate grab-and-go
snack for the way home.
down the late-night streets of any German city and you can’t miss the wafting
smell of fried sausage, an absolutely decadent aroma for the hungry inebriated.
It’s no wonder people flock to the stalls doling out greasy, freshly-fried
meats. Most popular of all? Currywurst, the steamed-then-fried pork sausage
covered in ketchup mixed up with curry and other spices. Many Germans also
swear by the salty rollmops, a pickled herring fillet rolled around another
pickled food like cucumber or sauerkraut, as a hangover-averter. Even more will
tell you to keep drinking beer, provincially known as having a “counter beer.”
its cuisine heavily focused on savory dishes of fish or meat and olive oil,
cheeses and salted snacks, the Spanish sweet tooth comes out in full force at
night. This fried-dough pastry is decadent enough by itself, but the late-night
stalls serve it up with a cup of hot chocolate to dip it in — and not the hot
cocoa that comes in powder form, but real, melted chocolate.
absolutely indulgent dish, Kapsalon is a mish-mash of fries topped with
shawarma meat grilled with a layer of Gouda cheese, covered in salad greens and
served with garlic sauce and sambal. Ticking it at roughly 1800 delicious
calories per serving, it’s a hard drunk meal to top in terms of utter
cultural makeup of South Africa is distinctly diverse, so it stands to reason
its food would follow suit. The Boerie Roll is the de facto national staple, a
type of sausage containing beef and sometimes lamb and/or pork. Samosas are
also wildly popular, as are chip and cheese rotis, a friend flatbread stuffed
burrito-style with, of course, French fries and cheese.
Canadians are typically big
travelers, and one of the most common grievances encountered is their inability
to find good poutine when outside of Canada. This wildly popular French
fry-based dish is a drunk eater’s dream. In its most basic form, poutine fries
are covered in cheese curds and brown gravy, but literally dozens and dozens of
varieties are available, ranging from anything like bacon-topped to barbecue pulled
pork to chorizo and queso fresco
Flickr/Theo La Photo
iconic snack in both Australia and New Zealand, this minced-meat-stuffed snack
is popular for a quick pre-bedtime bite. Often including mushrooms, onions,
gravy, and other fillings, plenty of places sell ready-to-eat meat pies at
small vendors including Pie Face, but others just opt for heating up the convenience store variety.
Flickr/Mr and Mrs Stickyfingers
for strange delicacies like the duck embryo balut, The Philippines is known for
catering to a bit of a more eccentric palate. It comes as no surprise that the
archipelago’s go-to after a boozy binge is a dish made from parts of pig’s head
and liver, then seasoned with calamansi, an Asian citrus fruit, and chili
peppers. If your mood doesn’t fancy the traditional recipe, sisig also can be
made with ox brains, or for the less adventurous, eggs, chicken, or tuna.
and spicy, this massively popular Korean snack can be found bubbling in huge
vats from street vendors nationwide. Made from chewy rice cakes, fish cakes,
and a red pepper (gochujang) sauce of varying levels of spice, a big cup of
tteobokki (or sometimes found skewered and lightly grilled) settles that soju
in your stomach after a late night. An honorable mention: kimbap, or
seaweed-wrapped rolls stuffed with rice, vegetables, sometimes meat or fish,
and lightly topped with a spread of sesame oil.
has a lot to offer when it comes to satisfying late night hunger, like street
cart pad Thai or spring rolls, but down in the islands the streets fill up with
the aroma of grilling toasties pouring out of 7-Elevens. Ham and cheese is the
usual go-to, but there are varieties like pizza and hot dog as well. And it’s
There is not much food more quintessentially New York than a slice of pizza. Horrifyingly greasy but undeniably satisfying, wandering down the avenues of New York after hours just isn’t complete without cradling an oil-soaked paper plate in one hand, half-eaten slice folded over in the other — and when you’re less than sober, a bargain slice holds more sway than a gourmet pie.
L.A.’s answer to New York’s pizza passion is its taco trucks. With trucks ranging from the most basic, straightforward Mexican fare to ultra-gourmet ones popping up almost weekly (Korean pork rib tacos, anyone?), the L.A. late-night taco truck scene is ever-evolving.
While every country has its definitive
cuisine and the drunk munchies that fit comfortably within those boundaries,
unequivocally the most universal late night go-to is doner kebab. While many
countries have their own slight variations, the Turkish dish is nearly globally
available and always dependable to satisfy any palate’s late night cravings.