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Thankful for Thanksgiving To-Go

Updated: Nov 10, 2020

Can’t be with your whole extended family for Thanksgiving? Is your Friendsgiving cancelled? Here’s something to be thankful for - restaurants that are making Thanksgiving “to go.” So even if you don’t have the company, you can still have a celebration with all the trimmings. Here are some good options for Thanksgiving 2020-style:

River Twice This gem on East Passyunk in South Philly is offering a Thanksgiving meal kits for 4 to 6 people, with enough for leftovers. They thought of everything - what’s Thanksgiving without leftovers?! The meal includes half an Organic Lancaster County Turkey brined in sweet tea and pre-roasted and all the fixings, including Oyster Cornbread Stuffing, two packs of King Hawaiian Rolls for dinner and for leftover turkey sandwiches (see they really did think of everything!) and pumpkin pie. Cooking and reheating instructions included. Pick up on Thursday, November 26.

Photo Courtesy of Fitz & Starts

Fitz & Starts This beloved Queen Village restaurant, formerly known as Hungry Pigeon, has been transformed into a from-scratch bakery, cafe and bar. Pat O’Malley, a James Beard semi-finalist is now the sole owner. You can order O'Malley's lip-smacking pies or a whole holiday dinner for 4. Fitz & Starts prides itself on sourcing exclusively from local and sustainable farms and producers and the star of the show is a half roasted Keiser’s Pheasantry Turkey (about 5 lbs.). It’s paired with several side dishes, including some that are vegan, such as Sweet Potato Kugel with Brown Butter Streusel and Three-Cheese Macaroni Gratin with Breadcrumbs. If you prefer to make your own dinner, let O’Malley do the baking. There’s a choice of 4 pies -- Heirloom Pumpkin, Three Springs Farm Classic Apple, PA Maple & Pecan or Sweet Potato Souffle with Torched Marshmallow. Pies can be picked up on Wednesday, November 25 or Thursday, November 26. Dinners can be picked up on Thanksgiving Day.

Since opening in 1997, Fork has consistently been considered one of Philadelphia’s top restaurants and its Thanksgiving dinner is sure to delight. The Old City restaurant is serving Thanksgiving inside, outside and to go.

Have guests who are vegetarian, gluten-free, have allergies or aversions? Fork lets each guest customize his/her meal. The traditional dishes, including Roasted Apples and Brussels Sprouts, Anadama Herb Stuffing, Parker House Rolls, Mashed Potatoes and Wild Rice Stuffed Squash are shared. Guests choose their own first course, main dish (Turkey with Cranberry Chutney and Gravy; Trout with Shaved Leeks or Cauliflower with Wild Mushroom Ragu), and their dessert. Pick up on Thanksgiving day.

Frieda (open outside & for to go). Photo by Kendon Photography.

Frieda’s website states that it’s not a coffee shop, bakery, restaurant, community center, or gallery. In fact, in normal times, it is all that and much more. It’s a bright airy space designed to make lives richer by reconnecting generations over food, activities, and conversation. While it is currently closed inside, online activities continue to connect people. Frieda's is open for outside dining and for take out, including for Thanksgiving.

The Thanksgiving menu includes carved turkey with chestnut, apple stuffing and port reduction, plus brown butter sage butternut squash, string beans amandine and citrus glazed carrots and a roasted beet salad with maple dressing for the remarkable price of $17 per person. A cup of soup or dessert can be added for $3. There’s also a Pork Roulade option. Frieda strives to offer reasonable pricing as a service to the community. The meal will be available on Wednesday, November 25 for pick up or delivery (to zip codes 19106 and 19103 for a small fee).

While the guest list may be small, your Thanksgiving dinner can still be big on taste thanks to these restaurants and many others. Now that's something to be thankful for!


by Irene Levy Baker, author, 100 Things To Do In Philadelphia and Unique Eats & Eateries of Philadelphia. Both books are full of tips. For even more tips, visit Planning a staycation? Go to the website for signed copies of books. For free shipping, use promo code TheCityPulse.

Click here for more blog postings by Irene Levy Baker including two posts with tips for how to help restaurants survive, Philly-themed masks, socially-distant tours and more.

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