Not everyone is into the idea of slaving away in the kitchen on Thanksgiving, but everyone likes the idea of a warm, fresh Thanksgiving Day meal. There’s no shame is heading to a restaurant for your fill on this holiday. In fact, many restaurants are doing it up better than any of our grandmas could (no offense to Grandma). We found a few restaurants with special holiday menus that are making us second-guess a home-cooked meal.
New York City
There are plenty of restaurants serving a special prix-fixe menu on Thanksgiving in the Big Apple, but the idea of eating just steps away from the site of the holiday’s biggest parade is too good to pass up. At Picholine, Chef Terrance Brennan is serving a $115 prix-fixe menu featuring 4 courses including a choice of Amish farm turkey, beef, salmon, sole or wild mushroom risotto. With pumpkin bisque with black-truffle foam and a lobster and sweet potato appetizer also on the menu, how can you say no?
As Thanksgiving approaches and we gear up for the busiest travel day of the year, we can’t help but think about all those who will not get to enjoy a plate of turkey and stuffing in the comfort of their own home. Many are still displaced because of damage from Hurricane Sandy and are in need of help. If you’re planning on eating out this week, make your reservation through our partners at CityEats, enter the promo code “RECOVERY” and CityEats will donate $10 to the Red Cross Disaster Relief fund. Learn more about CityEats’ support of Sandy recovery on their blog.
Need some ideas for where to dine? Check out CityEats’ top 10 New York, Washington, DC, and Philadelphia restaurants, and be sure to get a look at the new restaurant listings in New Orleans and Phoenix.
By Valerie Conners
Editor’s Note: Todd Carmichael, the host of our new series Dangerous Grounds premiering tonight at 10|9c, is the cofounder of La Colombe Coffee Roasters. La Colombe is known for its premium coffee, sourced directly from the farmers by Todd, who goes to often-dangerous extremes to make sure his cafes are able to serve some of the world’s most sought-after and flavorful coffee. Dangerous Grounds documents Todd’s coffee-sourcing expeditions, and after tonight, the show will air Tuesdays at 9|8c. Travel Channel contributor Valerie Conners shares her experiences enjoying a cup of coffee at La Colombe, and proves that Todd’s passion for the flavorful bean is felt by anyone who drinks his prized coffee.
Tucked behind a simple storefront in Philadelphia’s tony Rittenhouse Square neighborhood lies La Colombe cafe, which proffers what many devout coffee drinkers would argue is the city’s — if not the country’s — tastiest coffee. To call La Colombe a mere coffee shop would be like calling Tiffany’s a mere jewelry store; La Colombe has brought coffee roasting to a veritable art form, and anyone in the neighborhood looking for a stellar cuppa knows to head straight to the cafe. READ MORE
By Matthew Karsten, ExpertVagabond.com
A fierce battle has been raging on in the Canadian city of Montreal for over 50 years. Master warriors hand-forge their weapons using wood-fire ovens, dough, water, honey and sesame seeds. Thousands of citizens line up each morning to arm themselves before heading to work. What started this never-ending war? The quest for the perfect bagel. READ MORE
By Katie Hards
Photo by Katie Hards
What happens when you combine food- and film-hungry New Yorkers, 20,000 South Carolina oysters, live music, and the Brooklyn Fire Department? You get the closing night party for the New York City Food Film Festival. READ MORE
As autumn descends on Charleston, SC, and milder temperatures cool the Holy City, the town erupts in a flurry of bridal veils and bouquets: peak wedding season has arrived. If you’re invited to celebrate nuptials in this genteel town, extend your trip to encompass a long weekend, embracing lowcountry culture, cuisine and history.
It wasn’t the upcoming presediantial election that had the Nation’s Capital all heated up with dukes out Monday night. Our very own Anthony Bourdain and Andrew Zimmern joined fellow celebrity chef José Andrés, Top Chef judge Padma Lakshmi and The Chew host Carla Hall for the 9th Annual Capital Food Fight, a star-studded foodie bash and fundraiser for DC Central Kitchen.
The final food fight was a “surprise” iguana cookoff between our hosts Bourdain and Zimmern. No stranger to tasting and cooking the “taste-like-chicken” meats, Zimmern said, “The fact that they could even get iguana stateside is a tribute to the global pantry here in Washington, DC. And as someone who has cooked this and eaten it before, I don’t want to say I think we have an advantage, but I’m going to say we may have a little advantage.”
The off-season is the perfect time to visit the island of Nantucket, off the coast of Cape Cod in Massachusetts – a real-life “Pleasantville,” complete with cobblestone streets, grey-shingled houses and miles of picturesque beaches and conservation land. The island is especially inviting in October, when the water’s still warm, many restaurants are still open, the sea air is crisp and the streets aren’t lined with tourists toting a year’s worth of Nantucket reds home from Murray’s Toggery Shop. Do you need any more reasons to board the ferry?
Make the 30-mile passage out to sea for chef Michael LaScola (of Nantucket’s American Seasons) and chef Matt Jennings’ (of Providence’s Farmstead) Hogtoberfest, a 2-day celebration of all things pig, cooking and beer. The annual event – now in its 4th year – takes place on October 13 and 14. READ MORE
OK, so yeah, the U.K.’s National Pig Association is warning of an impending bacon shortage, thanks to high feed costs. But don’t hit the panic button just yet, because there’s plenty of bacon to go around at Travel Channel.
On Wednesday, October 3 at 10|9c, don’t miss Food Paradise: Bacon, and in the meantime, try not to drool on your keyboard when you check out our Sizzling Bacon Porn photo gallery – from Chicago’s Paddy Long’s 5-pound Whole Bacon Bomb, a spicy mix of pork and cracked-pepper bacon, all wrapped in brown sugar bacon to the bacon-infused vodka martini at the Berkshire in Denver, CO. READ MORE
By Kate Hards
“There’s a guy here wearing a PETA shirt,” wrote my confused co-worker in a text message. Liz met me at the 35th Street East River ferry landing for a quick boat ride to Meatopia on Randall’s Island. We were about to attend a one-day food festival featuring meat-centric dishes prepared by chefs from around the world … and there were vegans about to board?
At the dock, I inspected said t-shirt. In this case, PETA didn’t stand for the animal activist group, but rather “People Eating Tasty Animals,” a theme that was evident throughout Meatopia. Hoards of hungry carnivores descended upon the park and lined up to taste small plates and bites of tasty, tasty animals. The event was organized into Meat-themed neighborhoods in a large grassy field on the island: The Deckle District, Offalwood, Beaktown, Embassy Row, Meatopia Heights, Carcass Hill, The Quarter and the Game Reserve each had tents serving unique dishes prepared with humanely and naturally-raised meats. READ MORE