Do you long for turkey and all the trimmings but cooking all that food just isn’t possible? These places have you in mind.
While other people feast at their family’s table somewhere over the river and through the woods, some diners turn to Alabama restaurants that open their doors for Thanksgiving Day dinner.
Naturally, several of these eateries are in upscale hotels. And the folks at Bubba’s in Orange Beach believe in Friendsgiving.
But employees at Chuck’s Fish in Tuscaloosa and a slew of volunteers have a special way of giving thanks, opening to serve food free to anyone who is hungry and raising money for a community non-profit that builds affordable housing.
Here are some places around the state to celebrate Thanksgiving without wrecking your kitchen.
Since 2010, Chuck’s Fish in Tuscaloosa has held an annual Thanksgiving Feast to raise money for Habitat for Humanity Tuscaloosa. Scores of volunteers and Chuck’s staff prepare and serve hundreds of meals – turkey, ham, and typical Thanksgiving trimmings. Dine-in or take-away is available.
Time/price: 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Food is free; donations are requested for Habitat for Humanity Tuscaloosa.
Enjoy Thanksgiving in an elevated rotating restaurant with a stunning view of the Tennessee River. The upscale buffet starts with shrimp cocktail, charcuterie with toast points, smoked salmon, and made-to-order Belgian waffles and omelets. Mains include Cajun fried turkey with creole bechamel and creole cranberries, stuffed chicken breast, and maple glazed pork loin. Side highlights are crab-stuffed acorn squash and fried green tomato casserole. Eight desserts include Thanksgiving classics and unusual enders like limoncello tiramisu and smoked banana trifle.
Time/price: Call for hours when making reservations; $65 adults; 10 and under $35.
Reservations: 256-246-3660 or via Open Table.
The elaborate Thanksgiving buffet at the Oak Tavern restaurant includes omelet and waffle stations and other breakfast dishes (including Conecuh sausage), peel-and-eat shrimp, smoked salmon, charcuterie and dips, turkey and ham carving stations, and entrée options including sliced New York strip steak and chicken parmesan. The dessert includes pies and cakes.
Price: $24.94 under age 12; $60 for the rest.
The restaurant at the 106 Jefferson hotel is serving four courses, starting with corn bread with honey and apple butters and a salad. Next, choose among turkey breast basted with apple and lemon butter; spiral ham with brown sugar, apricot, and bourbon; or baked salmon with Meyer lemon and orange. The assortment of sides includes garlic green beans and yams with molasses. End with pecan or pumpkin pie.
Time/price: 5 p.m.-10 p.m.; $30 for ages 12 and under; $65 for the rest.
Reservations: Online or by phone 256-361-0090.
Roasted turkey breast with cornbread dressing, house-made gravy, cranberry sauce and choice of two sides – mashed potatoes, green bean casserole, sweet potato casserole, mac and cheese, steamed new potatoes, corn on the cob and corn souffle. Baked apple cobbler comes with the meal; a la mode is a $2 surcharge. Bubba’s also will serve its full menu.
Time/price: 11 a.m. until the food runs out; $26.95 most diners, $19.95 ages 65 and older, $9.95 ages 3-10.
Reservations: 251-974-1800. Walk-ins welcome.
The dine-in menu for Thanksgiving is also available for takeout. Starter course: Butternut squash soup or honey crisp apple salad. Main course: Sliced smoked turkey breast with pan gravy, mashed potatoes, green bean almondine, sausage and sage dressing, cranberry relish, house-made bread. Slices of pumpkin cheesecake are $9 extra. The regular menu also is available.
Time/price: 11 a.m.-9 p.m.; $49 per person
The buffet at Southern Oak restaurant includes a raw bar, carving station, buffet, desserts, children’s buffet. Price includes a complementary glass of sparkling wine.
Time/price: Three seatings, at 11 a.m., 1 p.m. and 3 p.m.; $74 ages 12 and up; $35 ages 7-12; ages 6 and under are free.