RECOMMENDED: Full coverage of Thanksgiving activities in Chicago 2013
33 Club’s menu is typically filled with American staples: steak, whitefish, Ceasar salad. So where better to scarf down an all-American Thanksgiving meal? A bountiful buffet filled with the all the gut-busting Turkey-day classics is being served at the spot all day. 1419 N Wells St (312-664-1419). 11am, $33.95; kids $13.95.
Executive Chef Jason McLeod has created a prix fixe feast centered around fresh, local ingredients at this casual sibling of Ria in the breathtaking Elysian hotel. Just like Thanksgiving at home, guests can share plates like free-range turkey breast, truffle brioche stuffing and potatoes cooked in brown butter. 11 E Walton St (708-204-9031). 11am–7pm, $45; kids $30.
Chef Paul Fehribach brings a taste of New Orleans to Big Jones’s Thanksgiving prix fixe. Choose from several Southern twists on Thanksgiving staples, such as deep-fried turkey, braised Niman Ranch short ribs with mashed potatoes, and sweet potato-sorghum pie with vanilla custard ice cream. 5347 N Clark St (773-275-5725). $46 per person (children under 12: $20).
BLUE SKY BAKERY & CAFÉ
If you’ve planned your entire dinner menu but spaced out about desserts, don’t panic. This charming, nonprofit bakery is offering T-Day tarts; pumpkin, apple and chocolate pecan pie; and decadent pumpkin cheesecake. 3720 N Lincoln Ave (773-880-9910) Prices range from $12–$24. (Closed Thanksgiving day).
Chef Nicole Pederson is bringing the comforting flavors she excels in to this luxurious prix fixe feast. Entrées include twists on the favorites like turkey breast, pork chop and grilled trout. But Thanksgiving is nothing without sides and deserts, so don’t forget the cornbread stuffing and pumpkin pancake soufflé. Affinia Chicago Hotel, 166 E Superior (312-523-0923). 4:30pm–10pm, $39; kids $19.
This Downer’s Grove spot is hosting a three course prix fixe dinner with all the Thanksgiving favorites, as well as Italian-inspired dishes such as roasted pork tenderloin wrapped in pancetta. 1801 Butterfield Rd, Downer’s Grove IL (630-512-0990). 11:30am-7:30pm. $29.95; kids $14.95.
CHICAGO CUT STEAKHOUSE
This old-school riverside steakhouse is serving a family-style prix fixe dinner for a surprisingly low(ish) price. The buffet has all the classic dishes; the regular menu also will be available. 300 N LaSalle Blvd (312-329-1800). 12–9pm. $40; kids 11 and under $20.
COCO PAZZO CAFÉ
How does Coco Pazzo Café celebrate an all-American holiday? Italian style, with a four-course dinner offering options like butternut squash soup, wild mushroom risotto and pan-roasted whitefish. 636 N St Clair St (312-664-2777). 11:30am–9pm. $42 per person.
DAVID BURKE’S PRIMEHOUSE
David Burke’s name is on the door of this modern steakhouse, but make no mistake—chef Rick Gresh is the one in the kitchen, and he’s making one heck of a Thanksgiving dinner. The four-course meal includes dishes like lump crab salad and 40-day dry-aged rib eye. As a bonus, diners get complimentary Thanksgiving leftovers to enjoy the next day. 616 N Rush St (312-660-6000). $43 (children 9–17: $15; children under 9: free).
For families that prefer their Thanksgiving on the earlier side, Deca offers an extensive brunch buffet featuring all the traditional Turkey Day fare, as well as seafood and sushi. Later, at 5pm, the restaurant offers a three-course prix-fixe menu. At either meal, families can (and, ahem, should) take advantage of a kids’ activity room, supervised by licensed baby-sitters. 160 E Pearson St (312-573-5160). Brunch: $105 per person (children 5–12: $40). Dinner: $45 per person.
EAGLE RIDGE RESORT & SPA
Sure, Galena’s Eagle Ridge Resort and Spa will be serving food all day at in the ballrooms, but if you’ve traveled all this way why not get your dinner delivered by a pilgrim? Guests staying in the rental homes and villas can have a dinner that includes a whole turkey, casserole, two pumpkin pies and much more delivered to their door by restaurant staff dressed in pilgrim garb. The dinner feeds eight to ten people, so bring along the whole family. 444 Eagle Ridge Dr, Galena (815-776-5050). Brunch; 11am-6pm, $29; kids $15. Whole Turkey Meal; $225, Turkey Breast Meal: $255. Order by Tues 23: delivery times 12-5pm.
E.LEAVEN FOOD COMPANY
This River North bakery/cafe offers organic free-range turkey, roasted goose, truffled risotto and cranberry cheesecake. 54 E. Ontario Street (312-202-0899). $10.50 per pound of Turkey (place orders 48 hours before pick up).
FRANCESCA’S ON CHESTNUT
This outpost of the Francesca’s chain—the only one open Thanksgiving day—will serve a turkey dinner (roasted turkey breast, mashed potatoes, veggies) in addition to the full Francesca’s menu. 200 E Chestnut St (312-482-8800). Thanksgiving meal: $17.99.
FOX & OBEL
Fox & Obel will cater your holiday with corn-bread stuffing, green bean casserole with crispy shallots and almost anything else you could want on Thanksgiving. Choose from a package deal of food for two, six and 12 guests and sit back and relax while dinner gets made for you. (312-379-0133) Dinner for two: $110; dinner for six: $250; dinner for 12; $430 (order by Sat 20).
GRAND GENEVA RESORT & SPA
Escape the city for Lake Geneva’s Grand Geneva Resort & Spa’s sumptuous Thanksgiving Day brunch buffet. Choose from dozens of options such as seafood pasta salad, prime rib and orange-maple glazed turkey. 7036 Grand Geneva Way, Lake Geneva. (262-249-4788) 10am-3pm. $42, kids ages 6-12 $21; kids ages 2-5 $6.)
GREAT STREET AT RENAISSANCE CHICAGO DOWNTOWN HOTEL
This downtown spot is serving a special Turkey Day menu with items such as cheddar-tarragon biscuits, sage-rubbed turkey and veal pot roast. 1 W Wacker Dr, (312-795-3333). 11:30am-9pm. $45;(kids under 15 $25.
HARVEST RESTAURANT AT CHICAGO MARRIOTT DOWNTOWN MAGNIFICENT MILE
Harvest is keeping Thanksgiving affordable with a full buffet for a low price. The spread includes turkey, apple-roasted chestnut stuffing, maple-glazed sweet potatoes, pies and more. 540 N Michigan Ave, (312-836-0100 ext. 6334). Seatings from 12-7pm. $29.95; kids under ten $14.95.
Give thanks for America’s cultural melting-pot at this unique, Italian-Asian inspired buffet. With dishes such as pasta with sun-dried tomatoes and Asian slaw with fried tofu, this buffet is sure to give diners a taste of something different. Holiday Inn Mart Plaza, 15th Floor, 350 W Mart Center Dr (312-529-1157). Lunch; 11am-2pm, dinner; 5-11pm. $24.95; kids under 12 $15.95.
JACKY’S ON PRAIRIE
Jacky’s chef Jonadab Silva may also be the chef at the all-vegetarian Blind Faith Café, but that doesn’t mean the guy can’t put out a hearty Thanksgiving spread. Choose from a variety of Thanksgiving dishes such as roasted squash soup, Slagel Family steak and, of course, free-range turkey. 2545 Prairie Ave, Evanston (847-733-0899). $39 per person.
JOE’S SEAFOOD, PRIME STEAK AND STONE CRAB
You don’t really need an excuse to buy pie, but here’s one, anyway: For every pie sold here through 2010 (whether key lime or Thanksgiving flavors like pumpkin chiffon and sweet potato pecan), $1 will go to the Greater Chicago Food Depository. 60 E Grand Ave (312-379-5637). $29.95 per pie.
KINGS WARF RESTAURANT
This suburban hotel is serving a full Thanksgiving brunch. Choose from options such as a chilled seafood buffet, omelette bar and more unusual entrées such as sesame chicken and BBQ pork. Lincolnshire Marriot Hotel, 10 Marriott Dr, Lincolnshire, Il (847-634-0100). $45; (kids ages 6-10 $18; kids 5 and under free.
There is no need to travel out of Lincoln Square for the holiday. French gastro bistro LM is serving a prix fixe menu with French influences on American classics. Wild mushroom soup with brioche croutons, Pumpkin risotto and chocolate cinnamon pots de crème are just some of the specialty items offered in addition to the regular a la carte menu. 4539 N Lincoln Ave (312-942-7585). 1pm–6pm, $35; kids $20.
The Lobby Lounge at the Showplace Icon Theatre
Take the pressure of Thanksgiving down a notch or ten and head to the movies for the usually-stuffy holiday. The Lobby Lounge is serving laid-back specials like turkey burger sliders on pretzel rolls, a BBQ chicken pizza and a triple-layered vanilla cake. 150 W Roosevelt Rd (312-564-2104). 4pm–11pm, $8–$11.
LOCKWOOD AT THE PALMER HOUSE HILTON
Lockwood offers a mix of traditional and contemporary dishes—such as butternut squash ravioli, chicken breast ravioli (this place loves pasta, apparently) and maple-honey-molasses turkey—in its bountiful Thanksgiving buffet. 17 E Monroe St (312-917-3404). $58 (seniors: $48; children under 12: $25; children under 6: free).
Chef Scott Walton’s Thanksgiving meal is a lot like your mom’s—if your mom were a chef obsessed with local ingredients and whipped up items like lavender buttermilk biscuits, apple-sage-brioche stuffing and maple-thyme turkey. 300 E Ohio St (312-224-2200). 11am-10pm. $28 (children under 12: $14).
MERCAT A LA PLANXA
This colorful Spanish spot in the Blackstone Hotel is serving a Spanish version of the traditional American feast. The dinner is a four-course prix fixe menu which features hearty Catalonian dishes like butternut squash dumplings, smoked turkey and chestnut stuffing with foie gras. 638 S Michigan Ave (312-765-0524). 11am–7pm, $65.
Chef Michael Lachowicz specializes in delectable classics, so skip the cooking and opt for his “Thanksgiving To Go” package. Or, ditch the cleaning and entertaining and head over for the Thanksgiving dinner. Both options include a choice of two entrées (from a list of four), sides and multiple deserts. 64 Green Bay R, Winnetka, Il. (847-441-3100). Dinner: 1-4pm; To-Go pick-up times: 11:30am-1pm. Both options $45 per person (order by Sun 21).
Eating light this Thanksgiving? At least do it in cupcake form. More’s “Thanksgiving Cupcake” is stuffed with almost every Thanksgiving ingredient—pecans, cranberries, celery, mushrooms—and frosted with a sage buttercream. Less-adventurous eaters can opt for the feta-cranberry cupcake instead. 1 E Delaware Pl (312-951-0001). Thanksgiving cupcake: $4.25.
O’H AMERICAN GRILL
This new restaurant in the Hyatt Regency O’Hare is throwing a buffet for the whole family. In addition to the classics, the buffet will feature specialties such as house-smoked salmon and shrimp and corn chowder. 9300 Bryn Mawr Ave (847-696-1234 ext. 6545). 1-9pm. $29.95; kids under ten $14.95.
Park Grill in Millennium Park is offering a la carte options, courses to share and special holiday cocktails. Pumpkin ravioli, slow cooked Amish turkey and garnet yam crème caramel are sure to remind you of Grandma’s classics while you dine at one of Chicago’s greatest landmarks. 11 N Michigan Ave (312-521-7275). 11am-9:30pm. Prices range from $12–$39.
Imagine if Italian food didn’t exist. Now give thanks that it does at this four-course prix frixe Italian feast. American items make an appearance with beef short ribs and turkey, but with Italian twists like focaccia-bread stuffing. 1566 Oak Ave, Evanston (847-475-7779). 12pm, $49 per person.
SAM & HARRY’S
This modern steakhouse in Schaumburg’s Renaissance Hotel definitely steps up the swank from your great-aunts dining room. Thanksgiving specials such as locally-raised roasted turkey and spiced pumpkin cheesecake will be offered in addition to the regular menu of updated classic American fare. 1551 Thoreau Dr N, Schaumburg, Ill. (847-303-4050). 11:30am-2:30pm and 5-10pm. Average main course; $37.
Sheffield’s will deliver a full-blown Thanksgiving dinner right to your door. The ready-to-eat meal includes a 12–15 lb smoked turkey, cornbread stuffing and a whole Dutch apple pie amongst all the other classics. 3258 N Sheffield Ave (773-914-4989). $100, (order by Mon 22).
Trump Tower’s Sixteen is offering three options for Thanksgiving: an expansive brunch buffet, a five-course dinner and “Thanksgiving at Home,” a package of all the staples that can be picked up and brought home to serve that day. 401 N Wabash Ave (312-588-8030). Brunch: 10:30–3pm. $115 (children 8 and under: $35). Dinner: 6–8:30pm. $125 per person ($185 with wine pairings). Thanksgiving at home: Call 312-588-8114 to order. Order by Sun 21; pickup times 11am-1pm.
SPIRIT OF CHICAGO CRUISES
Take a Thanksgiving Day Cruise along the magnificent sights of the Lakefront while enjoying a special holiday buffet. Entertainment will be provided by a DJ and cruise staff, which is bound to be better than your uncle’s fishing stories. Located at Navy Pier, 600 East Grand Ave (866-273-2469). 6:30-10pm. $66.90.
Smoking a turkey wrong can result in some serious home damage. Heed our warning and head to Smoke Daddy Rhythm and BarBQue for turkeys by the pound. Special sauces and cornbread stuffing are also available. 1804 W Division St (773-772-6656). Whole turkeys: $4.95/pound. Pulled turkey: $16/pound. Order by Fri 19.
Orange cranberry, pumpkin, red-velvet and dark-chocolate cupcakes will be available in Sprinkles’ seasonal EAT box, a packaged deal that’s perfect to bring over to a relatives’ house (as long as you’re not the one who got stuck cooking the turkey). 50 E Walton St. (312-573-1600) EAT Box; $36.
Geoff Rhyne’s Thanksgiving prix-fixe menu offers dishes so enticing (chestnut French toast; crispy eggs with spaghetti squash), it just might justify making a trip out to the ’burbs. 2139 CityGate Ln, Hotel Arista, Naperville (630-778-8623). $45 (children under 12: $22.50).
TAVERN ON RUSH
This room is usually filled with rowdy football fans. On Thanksgiving, it might not be any different. Opt for the to-go option if you want to avoid any cheering. Otherwise, hit the prix-fixe of turkey, sweet potatoes and carrot cake. 1031 N. Rush St (312-664-9600). 11am. To-Go and dinner; $38.95; kids 11 and under $15.95.
TEXAS DE BRAZIL
This churrascaria hot-spot is offering Thanksgiving-themed menu items such as turkey breast, sweet potato casserole and pumpkin cheesecake to its regular menu on both Thanksgiving and Nov 26. 51 East Ohio St (312.670.1006). 11am. $44.99 (kids 11 and under $22; kids 5 and under free).
Tuscany in Wheeling offers both a prix fixe dinner with the kind of classics your Grandma makes—green-bean casserole, turkey, cranberry sauce—as well as a turkey-to-go option. 550 S Milwaukee Ave, Wheeling (847-465-9988). Dinner: 39pm; $24.95. Turkey: pick up 12-5pm, 15lb for $100, 20lb for $120.
Vermillion is sticking to what it does best by elevating Indian food to a new level by adding unexpected Latin flavors in their Indian-Latin Thanksgiving feast. Vermillion’s eclectic alternative to the ho-hum turkey and stuffing meal is featuring courses like pumpkin acorn squash soup, Indian fenugreek black cardamom smoked turkey breast and crisp Colombian yucca cake. A vegetarian option will also be offered. 10 W Hubbard St (312-527-4060). 5pm-10pm, $55.
The prix-fixe Thanksgiving menu at this low-lit Mediterranean spot includes options like pancetta with roasted green apples, ricotta ravioli and spiced pumpkin meringue pie. 644 N Lake Shore Dr (312-255-4460). $45.
Give back this holiday by attending Wildfire Schaumburg’s family-style menu and food drive. Not only should you give thanks for the spit-roasted turkey, sweet potato casserole and pecan pie, don’t forget to bring some canned goods to donate. 1250 E Higgins Rd (847-995-0100). 11:30am-8pm. $36.95; kids 11 and under $14.95.
ZED451 is still staying true to its churrascaria-style specialties for its prix fixe Thanksgiving dinner. Fish, lamb and chicken will all be cooked over an open charcoal fire. Had too much family time? Pair your meal with one of the seasonally inspired cocktails. 739 N Clark St (312-266-6691). 12-8pm. $44.
Eat with a view of the Mag Mile while you taste Thanksgiving foods inspired by Spanish, Austrian and German food. Chef Kurt Mittelberger will demonstrate how to make a “disguised carrot cake” with exotic ingredients such as carrot-ginger foam and clover spiced melon caviar. InterContinental Chicago hotel, 505 N. Michigan Ave (312-321-8790). Brunch: 10:30am-3pm, Dinner 3-9:30pm. $55; $23 kids.