Forget about making dinner this year and go out.
Staying local for Thanksgiving doesn't have to mean Chinese takeout (though there's nothing wrong with that, either). Here's where to get your turkey fix, without even turning on your oven. You can even make a mini getaway out of it.
Head to The Cavalier for a snug, Anglo-inspired Thanksgiving (Courtesy of Aubrie Pick)
The Cavalier offers chic, London-inspired digs and a delectable 3-course menu for city dwelling revelers to enjoy this Thanksgiving. Expect gourmet takes on traditional recipes, like spiced pumpkin soup with bacon toasted pecans, slow-cooked turkey with giblet gravy, and horseradish and crème fraîche potato purée. Sweet finishes like the blood orange creamsicle and gingerbread with apple compote are not to miss, nor are the bar's signature craft cocktails. // Served 11:30am-8pm, $85/person, 360 Jessie Street (SoMa), thecavaliersf.com, reservations on OpenTable.com
Americano Restaurant & Bar, Hotel Vitale
This sleek spot on Embarcadero will be serving an impressive Thanksgiving menu that starts with options like warm butternut squash panzenella and follows with mains that include prime rib with gorgonzola bread pudding or heritage turkey with sausage stuffing, glazed carrots and gravy. Finish with your choice of delectable desserts, like the apple fritters or pumpkin pie tartlets, and then walk it off with a stroll along the Embarcadero. // Seatings at 2pm, 4pm, 6pm, and 7pm, $70/person, 8 Mission Street (Embarcadero, americanorestaurant.com, reservations on OpenTable.com
Fresh updates and an Italian-tinged holiday menu await at Scala's Bistro (Courtesy of Scala's Bistro)
Hop off the cable car at Powell Street and into newly updated Scala's Bistro for a holiday menu inspired by French and Italian flavors. The three-course menu includes options like potato agnolotti with Calabrian sausage, risotto Milanese, and chocolate hazelnut tart, but doesn't miss staples like sweet potato soup, turkey and mashed potatoes, and classic pumpkin pie. // Served from 12-3pm, $75/adult, $40/child, 432 Powell Street (Union Square), scalasbistro.com.
Fog Harbor Fish House
Waterfront favorite Fog Harbor Fish House will be open for business this Thanksgiving, offering a traditional holiday dinner (think turkey, cranberry sauce, stuffing, and gravy) alongside its seafood-based regular menu. Don't miss the pumpkin bread pudding, or the sweeping views of the Bay and Golden Gate Bridge from the prime location on Pier 39. Served 11am-8pm. // Pier 39; fogharbor.com.
Glam downtown outpost Bluestem Brasserie will be serving up a decadent four courses, with options ranging from classic, like roasted turkey, crispy Brussels sprouts, and sourdough stuffing, to innovative, like salt baked salmon and pumpkin cheesecake made with gingerbread streusel. // $85/adult, $35 for two-course children's option, 1 Yerba Buena Lane (SoMa), bluestembrasserie.com, reservations on OpenTable.com
If anyone can outdo a home cooked Thanksgiving, its Michael Mina. The gourmet three courses feature unexpected offerings like white truffle tagliatelle with brown-butter foam, Maine lobster with chorizo espuma, and Schmitz Ranch prime ribeye with king trumpet mushroom, potato purée and red wine. Also expect shareable sides of classic Thanksgiving favorites, indulgent desserts, and an optional wine pairing. // $165/person, 252 California Street (FiDi), michaelmina.net, reservations on OpenTable.com
Lakefront views and a Thanksgiving buffet? Sign us up. (Courtesy of Lake Chalet)
Take in views of Lake Merritt and a Thanksgiving meal to remember at Lake Chalet. A three-course pre fixe menu offers your pick of a main entree, including classic roasted turkey, grilled salmon, herb-crusted prime rib, and butternut squash ravioli, bookended by autumn-inspired starters and desserts. For an all-out extravaganza, opt for the buffet, which features carving stations for the aforementioned turkey and prime rib, a chilled seafood bar, and an array of sides, salads and desserts. Thanksgiving specials also available at SF-sister restaurants, Park Chalet and Beach Chalet. // Served from 10am-8pm; $59/adult and $19/child for pre fixe; $69/adult and $23/child for buffet, 1520 Lakeside Drive (Oakland), thelakechalet.com.
Casually elegant Corners Tavern offers a laid-back option for Thanksgiving dinner, with an extensive a la carte menu filled with holiday highlights. Sweet potato poutine, turkey-two-ways (roasted turkey breast and confit leg hash), wild mushroom gnocchi, fried Brussels sprouts and butternut squash pudding round out the mix of both traditional and inventive options. // Available 1-7pm, 1342 Broadway Plaza (Walnut Creek), cornerstavern.com, reservations available on OpenTable.com
Get a slice of history along with your pumpkin pie at longstanding family-favorite, El Paseo. Designed during WWII by architect Gus Costigan and financed by Rock and Roll Hall-of-Famer Sammy Hagar, the restaurant features cozy brick-walled dining rooms and locally-sourced dishes. Thanksgiving highlights from new Executive Chef Todd Shoberg include his take on green bean casserole, wild mushroom stuffed turkey leg, and a la carte options like pumpkin Bolognese. // Served 12:30-8:30pm, 17 Throckmorton Ave (Mill Valley), elpaseomillvalley.com
Left Bank Brasserie
Along with its other locations in the Bay, Left Bank Brasserie in Larkspur will be serving a pre fixe and a la carte Thanksgiving menu all afternoon and evening long. Expect gussied-up versions of your holiday favorites, like butternut squash soup topped with crème fraîche and roasted pumpkin seeds, smoked honey-mustard-glazed pork, and exotic mushroom risotto imbued with Brussels sprouts, truffle oil and parmesan. Don't worry—they didn't skip the pumpkin pie. // Served 12-8pm, 507 Magnolia Avenue (Larkspur), leftbank.com
the girl & the fig
Foodie favorite the girl & the fig will be open and serving Thanksgiving dinner at both its Sonoma restaurant and sister cafe in Glen Ellen. At the Sonoma flagship, the four-course experience (served 1-6pm) begins with wild mushroom gourège topped with bacon jam, and finishes with an array of dessert choices, including a certain bourbon-whipped-cream-topped nut tart. Three courses at Glen Ellen's the fig cafe features equally-impressive plates, and is available 12-8pm. Reservations encouraged. // the girl & the fig: $57/adult, $20/child, 110 West Spain Street (Sonoma); the fig cafe: $45/adult, $20/child, 13690 Arnold Drive (Glen Ellen), thegirlandthefig.com and thefigcafe.com
H2hotel's innovative culinary hotspot, Spoonbar, puts a spin on Thanksgiving classics with a four-course feast featuring inventive sides like butternut squash risotto and a pecan pie to rival grandma's. // Served from 2-7pm, $65/adult, $35/child, 219 Healdsburg Avenue (Healdsburg); spoonbar.com, reservations available on OpenTable.com
Chris Cosentino's new venture, Acacia House at Las Alcobas Napa Valley, wows with a three-course festive feast starring family-style turkey breast and a supporting cast of sausage oyster stuffing, duck-fat-roasted carrots, and caramel apple persimmon pudding. Set in a 1907 mansion, the cozy-luxe surrounds will make you feel right at home. // Served 5pm-10pm, $95/person, 1915 Main Street (St. Helena), reservations available at acaciahouse.tocktix.com
Napa Valley Wine Train
For an alternative holiday, take a journey on the Napa Valley Wine Train and enjoy all of your Thanksgiving favorites en route. The three-and-a-half hour voyage includes a welcome glass of wine followed by a multiple-course turkey dinner, and a scenic backdrop of the Napa Valley in all its autumn glory. Lunch and dinner trips available, from $171/person. // 1275 McKinstry Street (Napa), winetrain.com