|Don't let this happen to you!|
Up in the 561, Thanksgivings are never terribly traditional. There's never any snow or color-changing leaves, just oven doors opening and closing like mailboxes all day long, for the bastings. Itching to get out of the house and have someone else worry about the temperature and time, the stuffing, the cleanup? Why not? Give yourself (and your dishwasher) a break this year and let someone else do the work. Just one drawback: This year, you might actually have to sit next to Granny and -- eeesh! -- talk to her.
Here are five Palm Beach County turkey feasts for your gastronomic gluttony. Remember, for safety reasons, you should never attend more than two.
1. The Office, 201 E. Atlantic Ave., Delray Beach. Call 561-276-3600. Prix-fixe menu; reservations from 11:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. Thursday, November 25. $46 per person; $23 for kids under 13.
A gastropub sounds like an appropriate setting for a dinner that's supposed to leave you close to bursting. And the Office has decided to bring it. Its full-blown assault on your waistline is spearheaded by a Turduken -- that's a turkey stuffed with a duck that's been stuffed with a chicken. And they don't let up; they just keep attacking, with pureed squash topped with hazelnut cream, cranberry/pear compote, pumpkin-custard profiteroles, and more, way too much more.
2. Michelle Bernstein's at the Omphoy, 2842 S. Ocean Blvd., Palm Beach. Call 561-540-6444. Prix-fixe menu; reservations from 1 to 9 p.m. Thursday, November 25. $60 per person; $25 kids under 13.
Given Bernstein's pedigree, diners who've gotten accustomed to Mom's canned green bean casserole or potatoes made from powder will give their taste buds a real workout. Bernstein isn't deviating from tradition too much, but it still sounds fantastic: carved roast turkey with apple/chestnut stuffing, cranberry/kumquat sauce, and spiced pumpkin cheesecake. This is Bernstein's first Thanksgiving at the Omphoy.
3. Taverna Opa at CityPlace, 700 S. Rosemary St., West Palm Beach. Call 561-820-0002. Prix-fixe menu; reservations from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Thursday, November 25. $27 per person; $14 for kids under 12.
If turkey doesn't cut it for you, Taverna Opa is still offering its regular menu on Turkey Day. So you can do souvlaki or gyros if that strikes your fancy. But of course, it's doing the roast fowl as well, with mashed potatoes, a Greek salad, and a choice of dessert (baklava, galaktabouriko, chocolate cake, or rice pudding). How's that for breaking free of stereotypes?
4. Pistache French Bistro, 101 N. Clematis St., West Palm Beach. Call 561-833-5090. Prix-fixe menu; reservations from 3 to 9 p.m. Thursday, November 25. $39 per person; $19 for kids under 12.
For Thanksgiving with a Parisian twist, this French bistro offers diners a three-course meal on Thursday. Butternut squash soup, which seems to be ubiquitous this season, can start you off, or you can try escargots Napoleon. Roast turkey is offered, but so is prime rib or poisson du jour. Dessert is pecan pie of warm carmelized apple crepe.
5. Sundy House, 106 S. Swinton Blvd., Delray Beach. Call 561-272-5678. Prix-fixe buffet; seatings at 12:30, 3, 5:30, and 7 p.m. Thursday, November 25. $59 per person; $29 for kids 8-12; under 8 free.
Sundy House is laying out an enormous buffet for the holiday that offers choices well above and beyond typical Turkey Day fare. There's a salad and antipasto station, couscous, fresh seafood, a make-your-own-pasta station, and a slow-roasted, herb-rubbed turkey carving station as well. For dessert, check out the pumpkin ravioli with cinnamon sauce!