Lila Downs

Holiday Eats

GO gives you restaurant recommendations so you can stay out of this kitchen this Thanksgiving
There’s really nothing better on Thanksgiving than donning an apron and sharing a meaningful meal with your loved ones… except skipping the apron bit, of course. For a hassle-free Thanksgiving feast, these queer-friendly eats fit the bill!

Aleo
7 West 20th St (Manhattan), 212-691-8136
Prix Fixe (call for details)
Tucked away in the Gramercy/Flatiron area, Aleo features a warm, attentive wait staff and an equally attentive kitchen, producing vibrantly flavorful Italian cuisine with Mediterranean highlights. For Thanksgiving, Aleo will turn its culinary vision upon the traditional turkey-and-trimmings dinner, while offering many alternative dishes and a children's menu to boot.

Asiate
80 Columbus Circle (Manhattan), 212-805-8881
Prix Fixe $98 pp, $58 kids 12 and under, $55 pp for breakfast (seating: call for details)
For those looking to splurge, enjoy four courses of a modern, Asian-inspired approach to Thanksgiving. Whether you select the sea bass, wagyu short rib, turkey roulade or ricotta gnocchi as an entrée, you’ll most likely top it off with the delectable pumpkin confection for dessert. As you indulge, be wowed by the spectacular view of Central Park, and their signature wall of wine.

Barbuto
775 Washington St (Manhattan), 212-924-9700
Prix Fixe $65 pp; seating 3–8pm
This year, Barbuto’s seasonally driven kitchen puts an Italian spin on Thanksgiving fare, including turkey, butternut squash and other traditional fixin’s. So check out this trendy, raw-space restaurant in the Meatpacking District Chow, bella!

Bistro Les Amis
180 Spring St (Manhattan), 212-226-8645
Prix Fixe $39.95 pp; seating noon–11pm

Pop into this cozy Soho bistro for a traditional Thanksgiving dinner with a touch of European panache. Their prix fixe menu includes stuffed turkey breast with garlic sausage and mushrooms, cranberry sauce with pears and cardamom, and sweet potato, butternut squash, and mashed potato quenelles. Bon appétit, mes amis!

Counter
105 First Ave (Manhattan), 212-982-5870
$45 pp, $30 wine pairing; seating 12–9pm
For an absolutely elegant, four course vegetarian Thanksgiving, RSVP ASAP! Their dishes, such as the hubbard squash bisque with translucent apple and pistachio crème fraiche and the porcini chestnut roulade with roasted autumn vegetables, wild rice, and cranberry stuffing are paired with sophisticated biodynamic/organic wines for a truly refreshing Thanksgiving experience.

Cowgirl Hall of Fame
519 Hudson St (Manhattan), 212-633-1133
Prix Fixe $42 pp, $20 kids 9 and up (children’s menu); seating on the hour 1–7pm
With an atmosphere that doesn’t betray their name, Cowgirl is usually known for musically inclined waitresses serving up saucy Southern and Southwestern fare. But for silly, family-friendly Thanksgiving fun, Cowgirl’s kitsch-in wins the draw. Giddy up, partners!

Fraunces Tavern
54 Pearl St (Manhattan), 212-968-1776
Prix Fixe $75 pp; dinner seating 4:30–8:30pm
If the current political climate makes you wax nostalgic for the good old days, George Washington’s old haunt, Fraunces Tavern, offers up a traditional Thanksgiving colonial style. The menu presents a choice of three appetizers, three entrees (turkey, fish, and pasta) and two desserts. So sit back and enjoy a little piece of history along with your acorn squash and pumpkin soup.

Good
89 Greenwich Ave (Manhattan), 212-691-8080
Prix Fixe $68 pp, $29 kids under 12; seating choices: 1pm, 3pm, 5:15pm, and 7:45pm
Good boasts a four-course Thanksgiving feast (two courses for the youngsters), offering chic renditions of classic staples, like pumpkin pie with ginger crumb crust, alongside more rebellious dishes, such as the warm camembert-almond crisp with endive and green bean salad with sweet balsamic drizzle as a starter. Truly a menu (and a name) you can’t argue with!

Kittichai

60 Thompson (Manhattan), 212-219-2000
Prix Fixe $55 pp for 5 courses, $45 pp for 4; seating 4–10pm
For a more exotic flavor, check out Kittichai’s Thai take on Thanksgiving. Their menu features turkey osso buco braised in massaman curry with traditional trimmings. The décor is artful and culturally inspired, and the drinks are rumored to be delish!

Philip Marie
569 Hudson St (Manhattan), 212-242-6200
Prix Fixe $39.50 pp, half price for children
12 and under; seating noon-10pm
For Thanksgiving straight up, head to the charming, queer-happy Philip Marie in the West Village. Known for old-school American comfort food (and all-you-can-drink mimosa brunches), rest assured their Thanksgiving menu will not scoff at the classics.

The Red Cat
227 Tenth Ave (Manhattan), 212-242-1122
Prix Fixe $65 pp, $45 kids 12 and under; seating 3–9pm
Book early, because the word is out about this romantic little French gem. Known for wonderful food, a warm atmosphere and excellent service, you can expect an inventive and memorable meal. Can’t decide on whose family would be more sufferable? The Red Cat may just be the ideal Thanksgiving date. Meow!

Sylvia’s
328 Lenox Ave (Manhattan), 212-996-0660
A la carte or Prix Fixe menu $29.95 pp for groups of five or more; seating 12–8pm
Jonesing for soul food? Grab a few friends and head over to Harlem for a taste of real Southern comfort as the famed Sylvia’s serves up roasted turkey and stuffing, ham, collard greens, candied yams and macaroni & cheese. And don’t forget the hot sauce!

Talia’s Steakhouse
668 Amsterdam Ave (Manhattan), 212-580-3770
Prix Fixe (call for details); seating every two hours from 11am–11pm
Thanksgiving can be tricky for the city’s Kosher population — that’s why Talia’s Steakhouse can be counted on to fill up every year. Again this season their prix fixe menu will offer a smorgasbord of kosher meat (everything from veal to roast staffed Cornish hen, and of course, turkey). One warning: Pumpkin pie is conspicuously missing from the dessert list.
The chutzpah!

Red Bamboo
271 Adelphi St (Brooklyn), 718-643-4352
Prix Fixe $19.95 pp (regular menu also available); seating 4–10pm
This year, Red Bamboo is really giving vegetarians something to be thankful for with a soul- influenced, Caribbean flavored three-course meal for under twenty bucks! The menu features apricot-bitter orange glazed veggie ham served with red wine braised red cabbage, roasted garlic and onion mashed potatoes, roasted fall vegetables and cornbread stuffing, along with imitation turkey and chicken entrees. But don’t be fooled: If you think this meal is cruelty-free, take a look at the dessert menu. How could anyone choose between sweet potato cheesecake, pumpkin pie and vegan ice cream?!

The River Café
1 Water St (Brooklyn), 718-522-5200
Prix Fixe $125 pp; seating 1-8:30pm (Dress code: call for details)
Nestled under the Brooklyn Bridge, the River Café boasts a devastating view of the NYC skyline and Lady Liberty. So if you just paid off your mortgage and/or won the lottery, set your Thanksgiving against this breathtaking backdrop (accompanied by romantic piano music) and treat your girlfriend to this four-course feast from the sea. Featuring king crab, lobster and sea bass, their menu offers land-dwelling options as well (turkey among them). And for dessert, Sugar Mama, make sure to try their famous handmade chocolate Brooklyn Bridge.

Palo Santo
652 Union St (Brooklyn), 718-636-6311
Prix Fixe $45 pp; seating 4–10pm; cash only
This cozy little Latin lair fits perfectly in its location on the ground floor of a Park Slope brownstone. The regular menu of nuanced South American and Caribbean cuisine changes daily to reflect the freshest choice market selections, which means that the four-course Thanksgiving menu will remain a mystery until, well, Thanksgiving. However, acclaimed chef Jacques Gautier assures us that we can expect some seasonal favorites done in their own style. Think: squash soup with coconut milk, sweet potato dumplings, turkey mole with cranberry salsa, pumpkin pie and chile spiced chocolate mousse. Don’t forget to check out their stellar South American wine collections!

Cattyshack
249 4th Ave (Brooklyn), 718-230-5740

$35 pp; seating 3–9pm; to reserve a table, email gm@cattyshackbklyn.com
GO would like to give thanks to Cattyshack for hosting their annual Thanksgiving dinner benefit! This year the proceeds go toward the development of Brooklyn’s own LGBT center. For your $35 donation, there’s an all-you-can-eat meat and veggie buffet, two drink tickets and a whole lot of fun. Festivities kick off at 8pm with old movies, football, and board games; DJs start when the plates are cleared. So this year, dig in and give thanks while supporting our community (and playing Boggle).

Caffe on the Green
201-10 Cross Island Parkway (Queens), 718-423-7272
Prix Fixe $38.50 pp, $18.50 children’s menu for kids age 3 to 11 (Seating: call for details)
This well-loved Bayside Italian restaurant is perfect for special occasions and holidays. Their Thanksgiving menu unites American and Italian tradition, which unfortunately makes choosing your three courses a challenge. You must weigh, for instance, the Manhattan clam chowder against the mozzarella caprese as an appetizer, the traditional turkey opposite the eggplant rollatini as an entrée. Regardless, the old-world ambiance is delightful, the food and service exceptional.

Zenon Taverna

34-10 31st Avenue (Queens), 718-956-0133
Prix Fixe $21.95 pp (regular menu also available); seating 11am–10pm; cash only
At Zenon Taverna, grape leaves are stuffed right along with the turkey – and you will be too by the time you leave Astoria’s best kept secret. Receive generous portions of outstanding Greek & Cypriot food off of their regular menu, or go with the Prix Fixe Thanksgiving steal: salad or cream of turkey soup, stuffed grape leaves, meatballs, turkey, stuffing, sweet potatoes, pumpkin pie and real Greek coffee. This jewel blends the nostalgic aroma of Turkey with a fresh Mediterranean breeze in the warm and inviting climate of a family-run restaurant.

Riverview
2-01 50th Ave (Queens), 718-392-5000
Prix Fixe $40 pp, $20 for kids 12 and under (seating: call for details)
Name the last time your Thanksgiving involved a water taxi. Exactly. Riverview offers a gorgeous view, fancy interior, and three-course Thanksgiving menu with a seafood focus: a truly divine holiday experience.
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