Bay Area Thanksgiving Meals for Every Taste

By Tamara Palmer  |  November 11, 2013
Credit: Flickr/427

No matter how or where you prefer your Turkey Day meal, consult our Ultimate Thanksgiving Day Guide for the fix to all the fixings:

If you need to eat dinner really early or really late: Wild Hare is hosting a party called Turkey Legs for the People from 3 PM to 1:30 AM on November 28. On the menu: cider-brined turkey legs with apple cider gravy, a wide array of side fixin's, pumpkin pie with vanilla bean ice cream and honey-toasted pecans and fancy cocktails. The cost is $40; email to make a reservation. [Update, November 26: This event has been canceled.]

If you'd never dream of eating turkey: Go to Cornucopia, a four-course raw vegan Thanksgiving dinner at Peña Pachamama from 4-7 PM on November 28. Menu highlights include creamed tomato dill soup with cracked black pepper, portobello pecan loaf with sage cream and chipotle cranberry cherry chutney and rosemary pumpkin cornbread stuffing. Tickets are $45, and $25 for kids.

If an Asian-inspired holiday meal is your groove: Le Colonial presents the regular menu and Vietnamese-influenced holiday specials from 4-10 PM on November 28. Celebrate with a soup with roasted kabocha, tomato, leeks, Dungeness crab meat, crème fraîche, scallion oil and fried shallots; Xoi Don Ga Rut Xuong with boneless Cornish hen stuffed with sticky rice, shiitake mushroom, sausages, scallions and pickled cucumbers; and Xoi Nuoc, soft glutinous dumplings filled with pumpkin paste and served with ginger syrup, coconut cream, roasted ground peanuts and sesame seeds.

If you want to do it yourself: Order elaborate turduckens (turkey stuffed with a chicken stuffed with a duck) from 4505 Meats ($380; serves 25-30) or Cajun Pacific ($185; serves 12-18). Mission Pie has an array of Thanksgiving pies made with local ingredients, including apple, pumpkin and walnut. And if you're in a last-minute pinch, know that Whole Foods Market offers easy roasting turkeys and makes a surprisingly good pumpkin pie and brown butter walnut pie.

If rolling through Wine Country sounds awesome: All aboard the Napa Valley Wine Train, serving dinner on wheels from 4-8:30 PM on November 28. Chef Kelly Macdonald is preparing a menu with various main-course options including roasted Diestel turkey with pear sage stuffing, Portuguese gravy, cranberry chutney, mashed potatoes and honey-sautéed winter vegetables; roasted beef tenderloin with Swiss chard and golden chantarelles; pan-seared grouper in porcini dust on brown butter risotto; and pappardelle pasta with pan-roasted root vegetables, white truffles and Humboldt Fog cheese. The price is $124 (Silverado Car or Gourmet Express) and $154 (Vista Dome). Call 800-427-4124 for reservations.

If Wine Country is too far, but you want to be in the North Bay: Left Bank Larkspur is serving a Thanksgiving meal from noon to 8 PM on November 28. There is a choice of an à la carte menu or a four-course prix fixe for $41.75. Choices include Norbest natural roasted turkey with Yukon gold mashed potatoes, cornbread stuffing, Brussels sprouts with lardons, candied yams, giblet gravy and orange cranberry relish; smoked honey-mustard glazed natural rack of pork with leek and potato gratin, Brussels sprouts with lardons, apple chutney and pork jus; and autumn risotto with exotic mushrooms, squash, Brussels sprouts, truffle oil and Parmesan cheese.

If you'd rather eat in the South Bay...: LB Steak's San Jose and Menlo Park locations each are offering their own four-course menu for $50.50 ($58.75 with prime rib) from noon to 8 PM on November 28. Menlo Park's turkey is Diestel Farms with Brussels sprouts, chestnut stuffing and cranberry pear chutney, while San Jose's is a free-range turkey breast with turkey Andouille sausage stuffing, sweet potato casserole, orange- and honey-glazed carrots, roasted cranberry sauce and turkey giblet gravy. They'll also both offer à la carte menus.

...or the East Bay: Lungomare is also serving from noon to 8 PM on November 28 on the Jack London Square waterfront. Chef Craig DiFonzo is preparing a locally sourced and Italian-inspired menu of items including chestnut pumpkin tortellini, chicory salad with pomegranate and persimmon, house-smoked turkey breast with confit of leg, dry-aged rib-eye and olive oil smoked salmon.The cost is $45, or $20 for children under 12.