So Thanksgiving is next week. If you still haven't decided whether you’re going to cook, leave town, or stay in bed, you might as well just face facts and make your dinner reservation now. For $40 or less, here are a few spots that are either offering traditional dinners at low prices like the $10 deal from A Piece of Chicken, or are featuring otherwise interesting menus, like the Lebanese-themed Thanksgiving dinner at Al Diwan.
Thanksgiving Dinner That Costs as Much as Manhattan Originally Did, Supposedly
Pay $24 (wampum not accepted) and Spitzer's Corner chef de cuisine Sung Park will hand you some turkey breast, stuffing, “the usual fixins & bacon,” maple glazed yams, muscles from Brussels sprouts—with cranberries and walnuts, plus a slice of pumpkin pie. Warm spiced rum punch will hit you when you walk through the door. Walk-ins welcome; reservations recommended. Dinner from 3 p.m. onward. Beware the time traveling Peter Minuit, who (despite having been dead for 370 years this past August) is said to emerge through a LES wormhole for exactly 17 minutes every Thanksgiving afternoon, just long enough to deface an American Apparel ad.
Spitzer’s Corner // 101 Rivington Street // (212) 228-0027
Turkey Just Like Your Nonna Made, Maybe
Chef Salvatore Corea at relative Upper East Side newcomer Alloro celebrates Thanksgiving by cooking a turkey and pumpkin-based feast from 1:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. The menu consists of turkey meatballs, Italian-style, in veal sauce sprinkled with fried sage, pumpkin ravioli with parmesan and red wine caramel, and pumpkin tiramisu in peach sauce for dessert. Keeping true to the rustic pumpkinpalooza at hand, Alloro’s main course is prune-stuffed turkey with pumpkin sauce, served with an eggplant/chocolate tart and licorice powder.
Alloro // 307 East 77th Street // (212) 535.2866
Greetings from Ditmas Park
At The Farm on Adderley, the three course fixed price Thanksgiving menu (including a vegetarian option) is $40 (and $25 more with wine pairing). One Q train stop down the line, three courses at sister restaurant Pomme de Terre is $29. Consider the cauliflower soup with a fried oyster at The Farm on Adderley, vs. Pomme de Terre’s bistro-style mushroom soup. The Farm has organic turkey breast with leg confit and giblet gravy for traditionalists, and leek tart and Shepherd’s pie with chard, mashed potatoes, and mushrooms for vegetarians.
The Farm on Adderley // 1108 Cortelyou Road // Brooklyn // (718) 287-3101
Pomme de Terre // 1301 Newkirk Avenue // Brooklyn // (718) 284-0005
Flying Solo (With A Piece of Chicken Riding Shotgun)
They’ve seen a million chicken parts, and they’ve rocked them all. When it’s Thanksgiving at A Piece of Chicken, $10 gets you a veritable party in a compact takeout bag, consisting of turkey, gravy, cranberry sauce, apple-raisin-coconut stuffing, yams, mac and cheese, string beans, collard greens, roasted turnips, and banana pudding. The folks at APoC recommend you get your order in ASAP.
A Piece of Chicken // 362 West 45th Street // (212) 582-5973
Thanks but No Thanks(giving Day Parade)
If somehow you’ve indulged your masochistic side and you find yourself in the middle of the parade fallout around Times Square, and Pikachu is hovering in the grey sky above you mocking your existence with his magical, high pitched admonishments, be sure to have a contingency plan and escape to a land of gumbo, biscuits, gravy, mashed potatoes, roast turkey, and fruit pies. At Virgil's Real Barbecue, three courses are a fixed price of $26.95.
Virgil's Real Barbecue // 152 West 44th Street // (212) 921-9494
The Late Night Lebanese Spectacular Thanksgiving
From 4 p.m. all the way to 1 a.m., the roast turkey is stuffed with nuts, raisins, ground beef, and so on at Al Diwan. The $35 a head price tag also comes with fattoush, hummus, baba ghannouj, baklava, and a nice spot of Arabic coffee or Moroccan tea to finish. Possibly the only place in NY where you can enjoy Thanksgiving dinner in a dining room that might make you feel like you’re inside the Zoltar fortune telling booth from the movie Big.
Al Diwan // 210 Avenue A // (212) 375.1300