It’s almost that time again: the day we get to stuff our face with turkey and all the trimmings almost a month before we get to do it all again. London’s restaurants are laying on all manner of special menus for the occasion, from traditional roasts and festive noodles to vegetarian suppers, beer pong and lots of pie. Here’s our pick of where to eat and drink until your heart’s content on 27 November (and beyond).
Balthazar, Covent Garden
The original Balthazar is in New York, so it’s no surprise that the team are used to pulling out all the stops for Thanksgiving. The bustling Franco-American brasserie by the piazza is laying on a £55 feast that features spiced butternut squash soup, roast turkey with pumpkin soufflé, and a traditional pumpkin pie.
Big Easy, Covent Garden
Good time bar and barbecue shack Big Easy is putting its fire pits to good use with a special pit-smoked turkey for the day. The meat will be served with cornbread, pork sausage and apple stuffing, candied sweet potatoes, creamed spinach, garlic mash and cranberry sauce. Starter options include pumpkin and squash soup and a spinach and stilton salad, while dessert is a classic pumpkin pie — three courses cost £30. A number of special bourbon-laced cocktails will also be available.
The Blues Kitchen, Camden
NW1’s slice of the Deep South is marking the festive occasion with a traditional three-course meal headlined by roast turkey. It costs £29.95 and includes access to the bar’s live Chicago blues music, which will be playing until 1am. There’s no shortage of bourbon cocktails to wash it all down, either. The food must be pre-booked; live music kicks off at 9.45pm.
Bodean’s, various locations
Pigs will be getting a moment’s respite at Bodean’s restaurants in Soho, Fulham, Clapham, Tower Hill and Balham this Thanksgiving. In place of the restaurants’ signature pulled pork and ribs, it will be all about the turkey. A three-course feast for £23.95 will, however, include some ham.
BRGR.Co, various locations
The irritably vowel-less BRGR.Co restaurants in Soho and Chelsea will be laying on a special Thanksgiving burger. A 6oz turkey and thyme patty will be dressed with cranberry ketchup, a potato hash and buttered sprout leaves, and served with pig’s on a stick (that’s sausage and bacon) and fries. It’s named The Pilgrim and will set you back £10.95.
Chiltern Firehouse, Marylebone
You probably can’t get a reservation here unless you happen to be famous, but if you do fancy trying your luck Nuno Mendes will be laying on two special dishes: turkey that’s been roasted over hay, served with truffled stuffing and liver parfait, and a spiced pumpkin and brown butter pie with raisin caramel and bourbon cream.
The Diner, various locations
All of The Diner’s eight sites across town will be hosting a turkey takeover this Thanksgiving, replacing every piece of chicken on the menu with meat from the more festive bird. This means that you’ll be able to get a Dirty Turkey Burger, a turkey Caesar salad, and some whopping turkey drumsticks. You can find The Diner in Camden, Covent Garden, Dalston, Gloucester Road, Islington, Shoreditch, Soho and Spitalfields.
Three courses and a cocktail come in at £35 at this west London restaurant styled like a New York Italian. Starters include bacon and sweetcorn chowder and a salad of pear, hazelnut and cranberry, maple roast turkey is the main attraction, and a choice of pecan pie, pumpkin pie or blueberry cheesecake rounds things off. For those of the veggie persuasion, a nut roast is also available.
Honky Tonk, various locations
Kitted out as New York-style diners, Honky Tonk’s two bars in Clapham and Chelsea are going for Thanksgiving all guns blazing. Three courses cost £19.95 with buffalo wings, potato skins and pumpkin soup available as starters; a turkey burger, ribs and ‘not fried’ chicken on the list for mains; and pecan pie, sticky toffee pudding and Mississippi mud pie available for afters.
Hubbard & Bell, Holborn
The US features heavily on the menu at this new restaurant from the Soho House group, with steaks, burgers and ribs available all day, and pancakes with brown butter on the list for breakfast. To mark the evening itself, there’ll be a number of specials laid on, including a main of smoked turkey leg and a pumpkin pie for puds.
JW Steakhouse, Mayfair
The Thanksgiving menu at Park Lane’s JW Steakhouse includes three courses plus either a Bloody Mary or a glass of Champagne on arrival, for £62. Starters include New England clam chowder and Maryland-style crab cakes. For mains there’s the choice between roast turkey, steak and grilled sea bass, all served with roast potatoes, bourbon sweet potato mash, creamed spinach, braised red cabbage, green beans with shallots and roasted root vegetables. Dessert options include Mississippi mud pie, pumpkin pie and the restaurant’s justifiedly famous cheesecake.
Le Caprice, St James’s
This plush celeb haunt just off Piccadilly is laying on a traditional Thanksgiving menu of crab and sweetcorn chowder, roast turkey with sweet potato gratin and all the trimmings, and chocolate and pumpkin pie. The main course will set you back £22.50.
The Lockhart, Marylebone
Inspired by America’s Deep South and opened by two Texan couples, The Lockhart is top of the pile when it comes to London’s US restaurants. Its cornbread, mac ‘n’ cheese and southern fried chicken are particularly drooled over, but the spread they’re laying on for Thanksgiving looks set to rival them all. A £60 set menu features fried turkey legs, ham and smoked beef brisket, along with stuffing, mash, cornbread, green beans and coleslaw — plus pecan pie for pudding.
Manna, Primrose Hill
Upmarket vegetarian restaurant Manna is out to prove that you don’t need turkey to have a Thanksgiving feast. A four-course menu includes pumpkin soup; a salad of endive, rocket and pear; a herbed tempeh roast with wild mushroom gravy and veg; and pumpkin cheesecake or apple pie. That all comes with an aperitif of your choice for £36 per person.
Planet Hollywood, Piccadilly
We’re not normally quick to recommend this tourist-packed bar and restaurant, but if there’s one day for it then that day is Thanksgiving. A festive three-course menu costs £19.95 and includes pumpkin soup, roast turkey and apple crumble.
Porky’s, various locations
There are now three branches of this Tennessee rib shack and burger joint chain in London, in Camden, Bankside and Shoreditch. For a Thanksgiving pig out, try the £22 three-course menu at any one of them; it features a red pepper and corn chowder to start followed by smoked turkey leg and trimmings, all rounded off with pumpkin pie. What’s more, if you visit the Bankside branch, you’ll be able to partake in a game of beer pong — a game costs £10 for two and includes a beer each.
Q Grill, Camden
Des McDonald’s Chalk Farm Road eatery specialises in grilling and barbecuing meat Memphis style. Its special Thanksgiving menu offers a starter of clam chowder with spiced corn bread, a roast turkey main, and a chocolate and pumpkin pie to finish. The main costs £18.50 and both starters are £6. The likes of burgers, steaks and ribs will also be available as normal, and you’ll be able to wash it all down with suitably bourbon-soaked cocktails.
Riding House Café, Fitzrovia
This sleek Great Titchfield Street diner is laying on a festive spread that sounds well and truly worthy of giving thanks for. £35 will nab you a potent applejack cocktail followed by two hearty courses. Roast turkey will be served with cornbread and sausage stuffing, maple sweet potatoes, creamed corn, Clavados gravy and cranberry relish, followed by a pudding of miniature chocolate pecan pies and pumpkin brûlée pies.
The Truscott Arms, Maida Vale
This boozer turned award-winning gastropub is usually all about celebrating the best of British, but it’s letting the US take the limelight for a day. A slap-up turkey roast will be served like at home, in dishes at the table to help yourself to. Accompaniments include cornbread, bacon, leek and pecan stuffing; green beans; creamed corn; whipped sweet potatoes with caramelised apples; and cranberry maple jelly. This comes with a glass of Champagne, a starter of butternut bisque and puddings of pecan pie and pumpkin pie for £40 a pop. Kids can eat for £20 and vegetarian options are also available.
United Ramen, Islington
Slurp up a Thanksgiving meal with a difference at this experimental noodle bar on Upper Street. A four course menu for the day starts with teriyaki sweet potato, followed by a potato rosti with katsu curry sauce, and then a special ramen dish made with turkey leg, cranberry sauce, shiitake and turkey gravy. A trio of festive-flavoured mochi will be served for pudding. The menu is a one-off, but the turkey ramen will be available throughout December as a Christmas special.
Villandry, various locations
The Villandry restaurants on Great Portland Street and Regent Street will be offering special Thanksgiving menus on the day. Both cost £45 for three courses and include mains of roast turkey with chestnut stuffing and Virginia ham roasted with maple syrup and mustard. Starters include a shrimp cocktail with Bloody Mary sauce, there’s a vegetarian option of mushroom and quinoa-stuffed globe artichoke, and both pumpkin and pecan pies are available for pudding. See the full menus here.