3 Hilton Head Bars for Night Owls
Curse you, last call.
South Carolina’s stringent blue laws mandate that the party ends at 2 a.m., but that doesn’t mean a few enterprising souls haven’t found a way around it in the past. Veterans of Hilton Head Island’s bar scene will no doubt raise a glass to the memory of Moneypenny’s, which skirted last call by billing itself as a private club for legal purposes. To join the club, you simply needed to write your name down on the way in, but for a time that satisfied SLED.
Those days are no more, and Moneypenny’s remains a fond if exceedingly fuzzy memory in the minds of the island’s rulebreakers. That’s not to say there aren’t a few ways to extend your late-night shenanigans right up until zero hour. Here are a few places for boozing it up right to the buzzer.
1. Big Bamboo
Located in Coligny Plaza, Big Bamboo is one of those island institutions that somehow manages to keep one foot in the realm of tourist season while giving the locals a go-to watering hole.
It probably helps that they’ve made it their mission to give local live music a home year-round, with regular reggae nights and live music twice a week out on the porch. Factor in a bar decked out in a cool World War II-era South Pacific motif and a willingness to push the late-night envelope and you have a place where you can party well past midnight.
2. Porter & Pig
Another spot where you can catch live music almost every night, Porter & Pig in Wexford Plaza also keeps the late-night crowd happening by keeping the kitchen open until midnight.
And this isn’t your usual pub fare either, as Porter & Pig keeps the menu classy with share plates, charcuterie selections and griddled sandwiches (particularly celebrated are the nachos). Fill your belly for that late-night-into-early-morning party surge, fueled by some of their proprietary cocktails and a beer list as long as your arm.
3. The Boardroom
We’ve given The Boardroom some love in this space before, but if you’re talking late-night bars it would be criminal to leave them off the list. A favorite of the island’s local party crowd, f&b workers and musicians, The Boardroom has a long history of skirting late-night laws going back to its origins as a literal boardroom where a select group of island movers and shakers enjoyed a private club. Now open to all manner of moonlit revelers, The Boardroom is a live music mecca and one of the few places on the island you can get a drink until the wee hours.
That said, last call is last call and the law is the law. Plan accordingly, maximize the time you have and for God’s sake get an Uber when you’re done. No one thinks you’re cool if you drive off post-last-call, but the Beaufort County Sheriff’s Office will most likely be interested in having a word with you.