Thanksgiving Out, Where To Have Your Turkey and Eat It Too

With Thanksgiving less than a week away, it’s probably a good time to pin down what you are going to do for the holiday. While some people go home for this iconic feast, many of us choose to avoid that, and the kitchen all together. So where can you get your Thanksgiving on? There are plenty of options.

In Midtown, Del Frisco’s is giving steak a break, and instead, letting turkey take the main stage. They will also serve butternut squash soup, apple sage stuffing, potatoes au gratin, and pumpkin cheesecake; all for $80 starting at noon. 

For an Austrian twist, hit up Edi & the Wolf or their sister restaurant Seasonal Restaurant & Weinbar for a three-course prix fixe menu. At the more laidback Edi & the Wolf they offer dinner for $45, from 3pm to 12am, with dishes like roasted duck with sweet potato, spatzle with wild mushrooms and Brussels sprouts, and fluke tartare. At the other eatery, they serve pork belly with kale, grapefruit and sweet potato, rainbow trout, and Austrian caramelized pancakes with seasonal fruit, all for $65.

If you want to do two Thanksgivings in one day, you can go to Landmarc for Thanksgiving brunch. This feast of pumpkin pancakes, hash browns, and cheesy egg sandwiches comes with a $45 price tag. Follow that up with a three-course traditional turkey dinner at Back Forty in the East Village. There, for $60 you can get your fill of Brussels sprouts, roasted sunchokes, and pecan tarts. They will also be offering this feast at their SoHo location for $65, with the bonus of a fireplace.

Chef James Corona of Bocca Restaurant & Bar will whip up four courses for your Thanksgiving pleasure, for $49.95 starting at noon. The menu includes pumpkin risotto, turkey breast with chestnuts, and butternut squash soup with candied walnuts. You can also get this to go, or delivered to you.

Perilla chef Harold Dieterle has a lovely feast of brown butter sweet potato soup, roasted local turkey, braised ginger-sassafras short ribs, and pumpkin-chestnut bread pudding for guest starting at 2pm, until 9pm, for $75 a person. A great feast can also be had at The Little Owl in the West Village. There, chef and owner Joey Campanaro’s $85 prix fixe menu features Riesling roasted turkey with fig and root vegetable dressing, roasted scallops with truffled parsnip mousse, and Italian holiday cookies. Reservations start at 1pm and go until 10pm, and, it’s half off for kids under the age of 12. 

For charitable folk, il Buco Alimentari & Vineria is donating all proceeds from their Thanksgiving dinner to post-Sandy relief efforts. That means when you pay $85 for their family-style meal of antipasti, oysters, risotto, heritage turkey, roast suckling pig, and pumpkin gelato, you may not be doing your waistline any favors, but you are helping others. 

Finally, why sit down for a meal when you can get one to go in a flash at Pie Face. That’s right, this Australian pie shop has a Thanksgiving pie to go, which consists of turkey, stuffing and gravy in a buttery shell that gets topped with sweet potato mash and cranberry sauce. They also have pumpkin, pecan, and apple pies for dessert. Take home one or 12, they cost between $2.66 and $7.90, and taste just like Thanksgiving. 

Pie Face Set to Take Over Manhattan

Americans are just starting to understand what makes the Australian-style handheld pies so popular down under. Now, with the quickly expanding company Pie Face launching its second of eight new shops planned, in Manhattan, there will be no mystery left.

“If you are going to try something new, New York is a good place to start,” said co-founder and CEO, Wayne Homschek. “We believe what we are doing is like nothing else out there, and, it strikes a chord with people.” He added, “We do meat pies, which are just potpies you can carry around.”

The first Pie Face opened in January in Midtown, and now, said Homschek, they will be opening their second one next month in the same area. More shops opening in November, December, and January 2013—all in Manhattan, will follow this.

“We are focusing on Manhattan because we think there is a huge opportunity here to have a lot of stores,” said Homschek. “Eventually, we will be national.”

Aside from the actual pies, the unique thing about Pie Face is the hours. It is a quick-stop-shop that stays open 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and caters not only to lunch goers but also to the drunken crowd stumbling home from the bar. They make breakfast pies with eggs, sweet pies with flavors like key lime and pumpkin, American-flavored pies like southern barbecue, and classics, including chunky steak and chicken-mushroom, which, said Homschek, are the most popular options both in Australia and the states. Another way Pie Face distinguishes itself from other fast food joints is through the quality of their products. Each pie gets made by hand at a facility in Brooklyn, a place, added Homschek that can support at least twenty more stores.

“It’s all made from scratch and when you taste it, it’s the real stuff,” said Homschek.

The only other places in the city to get meat or veggie pies are Tuck Shop and Dub Pies. Homschek said Pie Face makes theirs a little different by using the skills of his brother-in-law cum pastry chef. Instead of a thick, buttery crust, the one at Pie Face is lighter and more like a croissant.

But, just because it tastes fancy doesn’t mean the pies are expensive. Right now, you can buy a little pie for $2.75 or three for $7.50. A large pie goes for $5.95, and, for a couple extra dollars you get a stack of mashed potatoes and peas on top.