Thanksgiving is like the Last Supper. If you can button your pants, you’re doing it wrong. Much as we love any holiday focused on eating, the NYC lifestyle doesn’t allow for cooking up a traditional meal (and frankly, who has the time!?). Behold: Our definitive guide to doing Thanksgiving like a true New Yorker. Whether you’re living in a shoebox or just can’t be bothered to slave in the kitchen, these restaurants have got you covered. From meals reminiscent of grandma’s home cooking to modern-fusion renditions, you can eat your heart out at one of our picks this holiday season.
If you’re looking to feast like there’s no tomorrow on some down-home Southern grub, head to Root & Bone for dinner. The menu consists of a farm fresh meal served family style, with choices like biscuits, deep fried turkey breast, whipped sweet potatoes, and roasted butternut squash. Round it out with either pumpkin or pecan pie.
Location: 200 E 3rd Street
For some classic feasting, pile your plate high at Freemans. This LES institution offers a cozy, traditional vibe with the food to match. Head down the alleyway for a menu of hearty grains, fall salads, and roasted meats.
Location: Freeman’s Alley, off Rivington Street
Celebrate uptown at The Cecil, one of the frontrunners heating up Harlem’s food scene. Blending African, American and asian flavors, the Thanksgiving pre-fixe is served from 1-8 PM. You’ll get two courses, a side, and a dessert. Starters include a collard green salad, curried winter squash soup, and tofu dumplings. In addition to turkey are a pork porterhouse, coconut sticky rice, and salmon. (We’ve got our eyes on the goat cheese cheesecake for dessert.)
Location: 210 W 118th Street
When fine dining in the East Village, you go to Narcissa. Thanksgiving is no exception, so we recommend heading to Narcissa at The Standard for their feast menu, and keep an eye out for their Thanksgiving specials to drop. True, it’s not your parents’ house, but the ambiance is killer. Start off with some hors d’oeuvres and a poached farm egg, and chow down on California-inspired meats, seafood, and root veggies for a modern yet equally gluttonous dinner (#cleanplateclub).
Location: 25 Cooper Square
If you live in Soho, The Dutch is at your doorstep. Renowned for their American cuisine and seasonal flavors, you’ll find classic-with-a-twist family style fare on their menu: Turkey with oyster mushrooms, bacon-horseradish Brussels sprouts, and spaghetti squash, to name a few. If you like your oysters as much as your bird, The Dutch is your spot for turkey day.
Location: 131 Sullivan Street
Going for a feast with your gal pals? Split a few dishes at Sauvage. This straight-out-of-Paris café is serving their first-ever Thanksgiving dinner this year, and they’re offering a special pre-fixe menu. The full bar will be open all day for walk-ins, but the Thanksgiving meal is available by reservation.
Location: 905 Lorimer Street, Brooklyn
For many, Thanksgiving wouldn’t be the same without a big ole turkey. Meat lovers, head to Bowery Meat Company for a feast you’ll truly enjoy. Here you’ll find just about every meat imaginable to pig out on (literally). The restaurant lends Eastern, Italian, and Parisian flair to their (mostly) meat-centric menu, and Thanksgiving is your opportunity to crack open a bottle of wine and try a little bit of everything.
Location: 9 E 1st Street
Le Coq Rico is the latest French spot on our radar. They specialize in birds (mostly whole), making for a super luxurious dinner. With an emphasis on responsibly sourced ingredients, this is comfort food at its finest. This place screams modern French dining, so it’s perfect for the entire fam. While their infamous chicken already has us coming back for seconds, Le Coq Rico will be proudly serving free-range, heritage turkeys this season to reallt get us into the holiday spirit. The Thanksgiving Menu will be available in the dining room at Le Coq Rico from 11 AM to 9 PM on Thanksgiving Day (November 26) for $85 per person. More info is available here.
Location: 30 E 20th Street
For a holiday meal that reminds you of growing up, head over to Market Table in the West Village. Their Thanksgiving menu is full of East Coast flavors — think oysters, lobster risotto, roasted turkey — as well as newer renditions of old classics — parsnip soup, filet mignon with fontina, and sweet potatoes with bok choy. Drooling yet? Snag a resy for their airy, open dining room stat.
Location: 54 Carmine Street
The reality is that some of us won’t be heading home to see family this year — luckily, Miss Lily’s throws down a serious feast. The casual vibes and island flair make this a prime pick for Friendsgiving. Spice it up with some jerk chicken and plantains, and pass around a few platters at their East Village or Soho locations.
Location: 109 Avenue A; 132 W Houston Street
Featured image via Dine Girl