19 New Movies You Can See This Thanksgiving Weekend

Who says cinema is dead? The Thanksgiving holiday is typically one of the busiest times of the year for the nation’s moviegoers — perhaps because so many families decide that once they’re all done eating, there isn’t all that much left to do together besides go sit in the dark. And even though 2017 has been a somewhat disappointing year for film (not to mention for everything else), there are some excellent new films playing in theaters right now. Here’s a sampling of the best ones, along with what our critics said about them.

Blade of the Immortal 

“Japanese pop idol Takuya Kimura delivers a thrillingly satiric but committed performance in samurai action-adventure Blade of the Immortal, the hundredth film helmed by cult filmmaker Takashi Miike (AuditionIzo). Kimura uses deadpan line readings and expertly timed pregnant pauses to simultaneously mock and dramatize the macho pride that defines Manji (Kimura), an emotionally constipated samurai who was cursed by a witch and now has Wolverine-like powers of self-healing.… Come for the gory swordplay, stay for the half-serious melodrama.” — Simon Abrams

Call Me by Your Name

“Even with its plainspoken and gentle portrait of gay love, [Call Me by Your Name] has already garnered the kind of buzz generally reserved for more serious or more campy films, emerging as the breakout success at Sundance, and attracting early Oscar buzz. The story revolves around a young man of seventeen, Elio Perlman, played with masterful poise by the relative newcomer Timothée Chalamet, and the will-they-won’t-they of his infatuation with Armie Hammer’s Oliver, who is staying at Elio’s family’s Italian villa as a research assistant for the Perlman father, a professor.… [The tension] evokes the type of butterflies that every kind of kid, with every kind of sexuality, has when they meet that first person who makes their heart beat faster.” — Alex Frank


“By the time it reaches its tearfully joyous finale, Pixar’s Coco plays like the movie that the most fervent Pixar fans have for a generation been telling me I’ve been missing every time I haven’t bawled my eyes out over the hurt feelings of plastic junk in the toy box. Rather than the quick welling behind the eyes I felt for Wall-E or Jessie, the Toy Story 2 cowgirl, Coco had me crying for full minutes at its last scene, a Dia de los Muertos fiesta featuring sugar-skull fireworks, ranchera sing-alongs, and that holiday sense of a family’s enduring continuity in the face of time and death.” — Alan Scherstuhl

Darkest Hour

 “Joe Wright’s Churchill-finds-his-mojo drama Darkest Hour is an epic of loin girding, a spectacle of a man and a nation psyching each other up for the terrible fight ahead. It’s a rousing wiki-deep summary of the gist of Winston Churchill’s first month in power, from his assumption of the office of prime minister to his delivery of the second most famous to-arms speech in British history. Wright’s film is fleet but not especially thoughtful, wholly convincing in its production design, and in one crucial sense something rare: Here’s a war movie about rhetoric rather than battle scenes.” — Alan Scherstuhl

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Faces Places

“Something of a prank, a farewell, an art project, a buddy comedy, a vox populi tour of the French countryside, and an inquiry into memory and images and what it means to reveal our eyes to the world, Faces Places is a joyous lulu. It finds the great documentarian and photographer Agnès Varda, 88 at the time of filming, teaming up with the 33-year-old photographer JR to wander France, their itinerary set by their own whims, doing what they each have made a life doing.… The film is light, funny, alert, alive, the work of a great and her inspired collaborator who are forever happy to be looking.” — Alan Scherstuhl

Florida Project

“Sean Baker is one of the few filmmakers working today who gets that it’s possible to find joy in small, difficult corners of the world.… [W]ith The Florida Project, his follow-up to Tangerine, Baker again grants both humanity and humor to his down-on-their-luck subjects, only maybe with a little bit of a bigger budget this time and a real camera.” — April Wolfe

God’s Own Country

“Francis Lee’s stark, striking God’s Own Country is one of several significant films this year to depict hard-edged men softening, opening up, finding the courage to admit that everything they need to get through this life isn’t already inside them. The protagonist, raw-eyed farm boy Johnny (Josh O’Connor), has inherited from his father a brusque coldness, a silence that he seems to consider fitting for a man from the rough hills of northern England.… In his debut feature, Lee has crafted a mature love story centered on an immature man facing the fear of even admitting that he needs love at all. It’s a film to prize.” — Alan Scherstuhl


“You might remember some heartfelt essays from women who were surprised to find themselves crying while watching Wonder Woman earlier this year. I was one of those criers. It was as though I didn’t know what I needed to see on the screen — a female hero — until I saw it before me. This is how I felt watching Jane. Around the midpoint of the film, [director Brett] Morgen flashes on the screen a succession of letters [primatologist Jane] Goodall’s mother wrote to her, encouraging her not to follow her husband or abandon her dreams. The scene — and all the others — is heightened by a score from Philip Glass that swells and thrums. In it, the enormity of Goodall’s bravery and accomplishments hit me like a coconut on the head. ‘My God,’ I said aloud.” — April Wolfe

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Lady Bird

“A heartfelt coming-of-age story that perfectly captures the bittersweet transition from adolescence to dawning adulthood, [Greta] Gerwig’s directorial debut is a joy from start to finish, a warm, generous snapshot of teenage vulnerability and exuberance.… Lady Bird is a rare bird: sentimental without being saccharine, emotional without being contrived, able to conjure tears without yanking at our heartstrings while the music swells. Its matter-of-factness is what makes the film ultimately so wrenching.” — Lara Zarum


“This story of two families united by circumstance and, as the title suggests, bound by their debt to the land, is a micro version of a larger story about systemic racism in America — a mighty force that will not simply yield to a handful of the “good ones.” And yet, despite its often brutal realism, Mudbound isn’t masochistic; it leaves room for hope, and argues fiercely for love.” — Lara Zarum

Murder on the Orient Express

“With his new adaptation of Murder on the Orient Express, the director-star Kenneth Branagh does nothing to besmirch the tried-and-true formula of Agatha Christie’s whodunit novels. But he does have an of-the-moment take on Christie’s beloved Belgian detective, Hercule Poirot. Branagh suggests Poirot as an emblem of order in a disorderly world, treating him as something of a superhero: Poirot doesn’t have superstrength or big punches to get to that realization, just his trademark miraculous insight. And, like superheroes in the first film of a franchise, he’s been given an emotional arc in which he discovers something about himself. On his sleuthing journey, Poirot must realize that truth is not quite as black-and-white as he would wish.” — April Wolfe

“On the Beach at Night Alone”

On the Beach at Night Alone

“The central image of Hong Sang-soo’s On the Beach at Night Alone is that of a woman quietly curled up and lying motionless on the sand, her back turned to us. It’s not repeated all that often in the film — we just see it twice, really — but it is echoed in other moments, in particular one scene when we see the same woman, Young-hee (Kim Min-hee), unexpectedly stop and kneel down quietly in front of a small bridge, as if in some sort of silent, sudden prayer. In a chatty film that otherwise consists of people walking and talking or sitting and talking — their conversation often lubricated by food and drink, as in much of Hong Sang-soo’s work — the spectacle of a woman communing quietly with the ground, whether in prayer, despair, or hope, speaks to an indefinable sense of longing, an added layer of metaphysical sadness enveloping the picture.” — Bilge Ebiri

Rebels on Pointe

“If you’re one of those people who eagerly waits for Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo to show up at the Joyce just before Christmas, well, this is not your year. But a consolation prize is Rebels on Pointe, a delightful documentary about the all–gay male comedy ballet company, lovingly chronicled by director Bobbi Jo Hart.… Serious balletomanes will find much to appreciate here; people who delight in seeing the form lampooned will find more.” — Elizabeth Zimmer

Song of Granite

“This patient and luminous life-of-the-artist film freshens everything stale about its genre. The music of Irish folk singer Joe Heaney here is situated in the hard beauty of the land and village he grew up in, in the songs of birds and local balladeers, in hill and sea and timeless toil. Director Pat Collins shoots in black and white, sometimes in shadows and candlelight, fascinated not by drama but by milieu.” — Alan Scherstuhl

The Square

“Ruben Östlund’s The Square, which won the Palme d’Or at Cannes this past May, probably says more about the times we’re living in than any other film you’re likely to see this year. And yet the beauty of the movie is that everybody will have their own ideas about what, exactly, it is saying.… When left to its own devices, does humanity find equilibrium or does it disintegrate into aggressors and subjects? And just what does it take for us to come to others’ aid? Where do we draw the line between the individual and society? The Square has a remarkably clearheaded and streamlined way of asking these many questions, but the answers it provides are always tantalizingly unclear.” — Bilge Ebiri

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“Can we call Joachim Trier’s Thelma a horror movie? The story of a young woman whose mysterious seizures coincide with unsettling, possibly supernatural goings on around her, it certainly resembles one in its broad strokes. And with Trier’s brooding, precise stylization, it does cast a disturbing spell. But horror turns on helplessness, on pulling viewer and protagonist into a world that, on some basic level, they want no part of. Thelma starts with that idea, but moves away from the monstrous, toward compassion and understanding. Like an emo Carrie, it probes the profound underlying sadness beneath tales of possession. It makes vivid the protagonist’s loneliness and despair.” — Bilge Ebiri

Thor: Ragnarok

“Like most of the better Marvel efforts, Thor: Ragnarok feels like the work of a unique sensibility instead of a huddle of brand managers. While the studio’s films demonstrated plenty of comic flair right from the start of its shared-universe experiment, with 2008’s Iron Man, recent efforts have veered too far into bland, jokey listlessness; frivolity has trumped lightheartedness, pandering has replaced irreverence. But in Ragnarok, directed by the Kiwi filmmaker and actor Taika Waititi, the gags are weird enough, and land frequently enough, that it all seems to be coming from someplace — and someone — real.” — Bilge Ebiri


“How do you tell a story in a way that’s clear and plainspoken enough for younger viewers, while still finding ways to bring subtlety and depth to the material? Wonder, the story of a young boy with craniofacial disorder and the people around him, opts not for concealment of its themes but accumulation. It tempers its fairly blunt narrative approach by constantly shifting its perspective. It starts off as the portrait of a troubled child, but expands to become a film about community.” — Bilge Ebiri


“For all his reputation as a capital-A Auteur, Todd Haynes has always demonstrated impressive stylistic versatility. The Sirkian pastiche of Far From Heaven is a far cry from the lo-fi expressionism of Poison, and the music video wonderland of Velvet Goldmine has relatively little in common with the fractured minimalism of I’m Not There. In that sense, among directors, he might be our foremost cinematic shapeshifter — which is just one reason why Wonderstruck feels so vitally personal.… There are few directors better than Haynes at adopting varied voices and vernaculars and then blending them to create something intoxicating and new.” — Bilge Ebiri











4 Ways to Dress Your Turkey



This Week in Food: Winter Burger Pop-Up, Thanksgiving Meals, Holiday Pop-Up Bars

Pig Beach Burger Pop-Up
Pig Beach (460 Union Street, Brooklyn)
Monday through Sunday

Pig Beach’s burger-focused pop-up, Pig Beach Burger, is now open for the winter season. The menu boasts burgers and smoked meat sandwiches (like pastrami on rye and pulled pork). There’s also a meatball hero and a barbecued pork chimichanga. The indoor pop-up will also feature a full bar with specialty cocktails.

Joe Germanotta Cookbook Signing
Barnes & Noble (2289 Broadway)
Tuesday, 7 p.m.

Restaurateur Joe Germanotta will be signing copies of his first cookbook — Joanne Trattoria Cookbook —  at Barnes & Noble. The book focuses on classic Italian-American recipes (along with quirkier fare, like Nutella lasagna) and also includes family photos. Does the Germanotta name sound familiar? Hint: He’s Lady Gaga’s father. Guests can register in advance for a guaranteed seat here.

Thanksgiving Day Dinners and Deals

Multiple Locations

Many New York City restaurants are offering Thanksgiving day meals for those looking to dine out this year. From 2 p.m. to 9 p.m., Saxon + Parole is offering a Thanksgiving feast for $95 per person ($45 for children) which includes options like grilled branzino or New York strip steak along with sides served family-style. For those looking for a three-course Thanskgiving Day deal, both locations of Tikka Indian Grill (in Kew Gardens and Williamsburg) are serving an Indian-inspired Thanksgiving meal for $16.95. Finally for dessert, Morgenstern’s has collaborated with Mario Batali for a selection of pies, which will be available for in-store purchase on Tuesday and Wednesday. Pie flavors include Mississippi mud pie and butterscotch pie with sweet dough.

Miracle on Ninth Street/Sippin Santa’s Surf Shack Holiday Pop-Up Bars
Mace (649 East 9th Street)/Boilermaker (13 First Avenue)
Friday through December 24

Holiday-themed pop-up bars Miracle on Ninth Street and Sippin’ Santa’s Surf Shack are coming back to New York this weekend for a month-long residency. Miracle on Ninth’s cocktail menu returns this year with Christmas-inspired spins on the Cosmopolitan and other classic offerings. Meanwhile, fans of tiki drinks can find a variety of spicy concoctions at Sippin’ Santa’s. Seating at both bars are available on a first come, first served basis.


Thanksgiving Guide: All You Need to Know About Turkey Day Deals and Destinations

If the thought of an eight-hour layover followed by your drunk uncle’s ode to Donald Trump doesn’t exactly ignite the spirit of American heritage, you may want to consider the many other tasty alternatives to celebrate the Thanksgiving holiday. Here are 10 great ideas:

If you want to spend the actual holiday helping people, but still want to eat a Thanksgiving-style meal, head to:
Angel of Harlem, 2272 Frederick Douglass Boulevard, Monday November 23 and Tuesday November 24
Instead of staying open on Thanksgiving, Angel of Harlem will be closed so chef Max Hardy and his staff can volunteer nearby at The Food Bank for New York City. Guests who wish to do the same can eat a few days in advance with a $45 per person pre-fix menu. The selection includes white cheddar mac n’ cheese, citrus and herb roasted turkey with cornbread stuffing, and braised short rib.

If you want to go out the night before, but can’t stand your hometown bar, head to:
Grand Ferry Tavern, 229 Kent Avenue, Brooklyn, Wednesday November 25, 4 p.m. to 12 a.m.
Pre-game Thanksgiving eve with an all-day oyster happy hour, wine specials, and a $20 prix fixe menu. Dinner includes a draft cocktail, the Grand Ferry burger with fries, and bourbon ice cream. Oyster platters will be half-price during happy hour and range from $17.60 to $32.50, while any bottle noted on the wine list will be 50% off.

If you want to walk away with more than just leftover turkey, head to:
Artisanal Bistro, 2 Park Avenue, Thursday November 26, 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.
In addition to a five course prix fixe for $85 – 2 courses for $60 per child – each table receives a complimentary wine and cheese basket to take home. Guests can reserve two hour seatings beginning at 11 a.m., with the final seating taking place at 7 p.m..

If you want to re-enact the Mayflower voyage, head to:
The Water Table, West Street at India Street, Brooklyn, Thursday November 26, 4 to 7 p.m.
Set sail for Lady Liberty while enjoying Thanksgiving on the East River. For $95, pretend you’re a millennial pilgrim with a four-course dinner highlighted by greenmarket pretzels with maple mustard, organic turkey, and garlic mashed potatoes. Drinks – which are not included in the cost of a ticket – are available for purchase on board. Hop aboard here.

If you want a celebrity chef to do the cooking, head to:
Jams by Jonathan Waxman, 1 Hotel Central Park, Thursday November 26, 1414 6th Avenue
A nearby option if you plan on watching the Macy’s parade, diners can warm their bones with a a three-course dinner for $85 per person ($35 per child). The table setting includes Parker House rolls, pumpkin lasagna, and either turkey breast with sourdough bread budding, baked cod, or potato gnocchi. All traditional sides will be served family-style.

If you like turkey, but really prefer seafood, head to:
The Clam, 420 Hudson Street, Thursday November 26

If the bird is decidedly not the word in your family, settle down with baked littleneck clams accompanied by pancetta and crab and stuffed Maine lobster as part of a three course $90 prix fix menu ($25 for children). Desserts include pumpkin pudding with gingerbread cookies and spiced cream and hazelnut cheesecake.

If you want a European twist on an American holiday, head to:
Socarrat Restaurants, 259 W 19th Street; 284 Mulberry Street; 953 2nd Avenue, 12 to 9 p.m.
For $55, give Thanksgiving a Mediterranean twist with a variety of paellas, pan-seared lamb chops, and seafood casserole. The restaurant is also offering turkey stuffed with chorizo, apple, and dried cranberry as part of its three-course menu. Wine pairings are available for an additional $42.

If you usually celebrate Thanksgiving with a Tofurky, head to:
by CHLOE, 185 Bleecker Street, throughout November

If the thought of eating a gentle gobbler is too much to bear, grab a vegan-friendly Thanksgiving burger to dine in or bring to mom and dad’s. The patty is made with lemon-caper seitan and topped with kale, stuffing, rosemary gravy, and a fresh cranberry sauce.

If you need a gluten-free Thanksgiving, head to:
Madison Square Tavern, 150 West 30th Street
For $50, families with gluten-free eaters can avoid gravy drama by heading to this restaurant for butternut squash soup, sautéed red snapper with blood-orange butter, baked ham, or organic turkey. The restaurant is ending its three-course meal with a choice of chocolate bread pudding or roast pears with vanilla and coconut sorbet.

If you don’t like restaurant food, but hate cooking large meals, head to:
Foragers Market, 56 Adams Street, Brooklyn and 300 West 22 Street 
Grab a pre-carved local turkey, Cape Cod cranberries, New York apples, and pies from Four & Twenty Blackbirds at these DUMBO and Chelsea markets. Thanksgiving dinners can be ordered a la carte to your specific needs or chosen from a few themed dinner packages such as traditional and vegan. Wine pairings are also available upon request.

If you like restaurant food, but would prefer eating at home, head to:
Donovan’s Pub, 57-24 Roosevelt Avenue, Queens, Thursday, 11 a.m.
Grab your brother-in-law or daughter’s unsuspecting boyfriend and pick up a whole roasted turkey, sides, and sauces from this longstanding Irish favorite, which is offering meals for parties ranging from four to 16 people. Dinner packages – which range from $189 to $432  –  include a whole roasted turkey, a choice of salad, a choice of four side orders, gravy, and cranberry sauce. Orders must be placed by Tuesday November 24 for pick-up on Thanksgiving Day at 11 a.m..

If you’re just responsible for dessert, head to:
Bien Cuit, 120 Smith Street, Brooklyn, Tuesday through Thursday, 7 a.m. to 8 p.m./7 a.m. to 12 p.m. on Thanksgiving
If you want to steal the show, pre-order pies or buttermilk biscuits to pick up starting Tuesday November 24. The bakery is offering two nine inch pies – cocoa nib pecan and pumpkin caramel – for $35 each; buttermilk biscuits are $16.50 for a dozen.


Best Weekend Food Events: Thanksgiving Wine Workshop, Momo Crawl, and Barback Games

10th Annual Thanksgiving Workshop, Bottlerocket, 5 West 19th Street, Saturday, 1 p.m.

Learn how to find the perfect wine to pair with your turkey day dinner at this casual workshop, which offers guests samples of 12 wines and spirits. Each sample will be paired with a traditional dish you’d find at Thanksgiving, while $10 of the $20 ticket cost will go to any in-store purchases made that day. Guests can sign up for a 30-minute tasting tour reservation here.

Fourth Annual Momo Crawl, Jackson Heights Food Court, 73-07 37th Road, Queens, Saturday, 2 p.m.

Check out The Best Momo in New York is in the Back of a Mobile Phone Store in Queens to learn the story behind Lhasa Fast Food’s 2014 victory as momo champion. But will it defend the title for 2015? Find out at the fourth annual momo crawl, which offers momos for one bill of any denomination at participating locations throughout Jackson Heights. Guests can grab a map outside of the Jackson Heights Food Court to find out which spots are offering dumplings, with locations offering varieties like chicken, beef (and even yak!) All participants are able to vote to crown a champion at the end of the day.

S’mac That: Spanking Tips and Mac ‘n Cheese with S’mac NYC, Babeland, 94 Rivington Street, Saturday, 4 p.m.

George Constanza explored mixing sex with pastrami sandwiches, but Babeland is offering a new twist on a tale as old as time. Students will learn how to dish out and take a “smack” with a hand, paddle, and other adult toys while enjoying a complimentary bowl of S’mac’s mac and cheese. The first five guests participating in the workshop will also receive free product samples upon arrival.

Brew, Run…and Drink, Threes Brewing, 333 Douglas Street – 2nd Floor, Brooklyn, Sunday, 1 p.m.

End your morning jog with beers and conversation with fellow runners. For two hours, guests receive unlimited ten-ounce pours of home brewed beers created by local area running clubs like Mikkeller Running Club pilsner. Food from Hill Country as well as additional beers will be available for purchase. Tickets are $20 and can be secured in advance here; a limited number will be available at the door for $25.

Fernet-Branca Barback Games, Music Hall of Williamsburg, 66 North Sixth, Brooklyn, Sunday, 9:30 p.m.

Support your local barback – or compete against your fellow behind the bar brethren – at this friendly gladiator-style party. Barbacks from across the city (limit one barback per bar) will compete in a series of grueling challenges to determine a champion while friends cheer them on to glory. Drinks will be available for purchase and live entertainment will be provided throughout the evening.. Only the first 40 people who register in advance will be able to compete; score a spot here.


DIY: Cranberry Orange Relish Redux

So the Big Meal is almost upon us. You’re a Thanksgiving house guest and you haven’t even prepared a dish to bring?! Of course not. Because procrastination is as American as Turkey Day itself. I know what you were thinking; just pick up a cheap bottle of wine or a six pack from the local bodega on the way. But you’re better than that. Here’s a last second dish that involves five minutes with a Cuisinart and a few ingredients that you possibly already have in your refrigerator. No fuss, no muss: Cranberry-Orange Relish Redux.

First, a few words about this seductive side dish. Cranberry-Orange Relish is so full of awesome, we can’t even begin to describe it. It highlights literally every other food on the Thanksgiving table. You want a bite of dark meat, white meat, mashed potatoes, stuffing, green beans? All of it, tastier with a smattering of the tart, sweet stuff on top. Heck, we’ll eat it anytime of year. We don’t need to wait for a special occasion. If you’re suffering from a random mid-day craving, the Cinnamon Snail Food Truck–famous for their vegan fare and creme brûlée donuts–makes a mean rendition atop their Thanksgiving-inspired seitan sandwich.

But this dish is simple enough to be masterfully executed by anyone with opposable thumbs. Now’s the part of a ‘how-to’ where you’d generally read a recipe. That’s what’s so genius about Cranberry-Orange Relish: no recipe needed. Just take out a few oranges, quarter them and throw in, like, a small carton of cranberries, add some brown sugar, maybe a few pecans and some orange juice and just start blending. Everything is made to taste. If it’s too tart, add more brown sugar. If it’s too sweet, more cranberries. The only advice we can offer with certainty is that you shouldn’t over-process, because it’s nice to have noticeable shards of zest and berry for textural significance.

So what are you waiting for? Snatch the dusty, old Cuisinart from under your kitchen cabinet and snap to it. Your value as a house guest is about to increase dramatically. Enjoy your Thanksgiving — and don’t say we never did anything for you.



This Week’s Five Best Food Events – 11/24/2014

Make the holiday work week go by even quicker by focusing your efforts on these five delicious gatherings.

Free Movie Night: Aladdin, Huckleberry Bar, 588 Grand Street, Monday, 9 p.m.

Begin a week of thanks by raising a glass to the life of Robin Williams, as this cocktail bar concludes its month long tribute to the actor with a viewing of the Disney classic. The bar will offer a two-for-one on cocktails as well as free popcorn for those who sign up for the bar’s free movie night membership. Additional food, such as a Sicilian tuna and focaccia grilled cheese sandwiches, are available for purchase.

Six Degrees of Social Innovation: Food, Centre for Social Innovation NYC,
601 West 26th Street, Tuesday, 6 p.m.

Does the thought of holiday leftovers leave your conscience in disarray? Proponents of social change and those interested in the food space are invited to a discussion on the state of hot button affairs. Organizations such as Waste to Wealth and Stewardship Farms will help facilitate conversation, and refreshments will be available throughout the evening. Guests are encouraged to bring a canned good or suggested donation of $5.

Float, Secret Location, Brooklyn, Wednesday, 9 p.m.

Instead of the soul crushing pre-holiday celebration in a crowded hometown bar, grab some friends and check out an experience designed to be head and shoulders above everything else. Swings, a floating surfboard, and fluffy chocolate desserts should give the night an uplifting element before the inevitable Turkey Day crash. Tickets start at $10.

Thanksgiving Day Dinner, multiple locations, Thursday

If you’re looking for a place to gobble up warm turkey this holiday, the city has a ton of options for Thanksgiving Day festivities, and the following are just a few of the places still accepting reservations: The Water Table is offering a full spread of Turkey Day delights along with a cruise around the Statue of Liberty for $90. For those who prefer something other than poultry, Tender is offering a choice of items like polenta lasagna and filet mignon as part of a $65 four-course dinner package. Finally, if you’re looking for something a bit off the beaten path, Barbounia’s annual Thanksgiving Day meal features a Middle Eastern twist with dishes like duck falafel and pizza with smoked turkey sausage.

Fare Share Friday, St. Bartholomew’s Church, 325 Park Avenue, Friday, 4 p.m.

If you’re looking to give back this Friday, join this celebration, where soup kitchen regulars, volunteers, and supporters of Crossroads Community join together for a meal. Chefs from The Waldorf-Astoria Hotel and The New York Palace will prepare a traditional feast to celebrate the day, with all proceeds going to help support volunteer efforts. Be sure to RSVP.


Beer of the Week: A Toast Before the Roast

Thanksgiving is the pinnacle of American traditions, no doubt. Stuff your face, watch football, pass out in a tryptophan-induced food coma before the nightly news. With so much awesomeness at hand, finding the appropriate ale to mark the occasion is a daunting task. Sure, the craft beer scene is awash in autumn-inspired offerings. It would be easy to pick any number of bottles stuffed with pumpkin spice and move on to food preparation. But you’re better than that. You need a beer that fires on all cylinders; something that tells any number of stories. Shapeshifter Scotch Ale is here for you.

Brewed earlier this season by Grimm Artisanal Ales, Shapeshifter arrived at the ideal moment in human history. For one, it’s brewed with dark candi syrup from Belgium, lending it the caramelized nuttiness that works well with any number of dishes populating the Turkey Day spread. An 8.3 percent ABV means you’ll be feeling its effects in no time, helping you deal with the stress of a lengthy afternoon with extended family. And the name of the beer itself also provides a coping mechanism, as you perilously attempt to squeeze into your jeans at the end of the holiday weekend. Surely it was the clothing, not your belly, that shifted shapes.

Shapeshifter is brewed in authentic scotch style, wherein the malt undergoes an extended boil, bringing more robust flavors and deeper mahogany colors into the glass. And as today’s headlines suggest, it’s a good time to be an immigrant in America. Whereas we might have once looked to pour out a suspected foreigner, drinkers are now free to weave Shapeshifter into the diverse cultural tapestry of the American dinner table.

So when you pop open a 22-ounce bomber next Thursday, remember you’re not just celebrating the beer’s well-rounded notes of toffee and spice, you’re also celebrating our way of life. Serve it out of a football, and you will have the most Thanksgiving beer of all time.

Grimm is a husband-and-wife team of nomads, making their limited releases in small batches at assorted breweries across the state. As such, no single offering will stay on the shelves for long. Check their twee-rific website for more info on where to track them down.



The 10 Best Restaurants for Thanksgiving Dinner, 2014

If the thought of burning the turkey for all your in-laws to see gives you heart palpitations, take a step back. There’s no reason to put all that stress on yourself, especially when we live in a city full of restaurants that would love to serve you your holiday meal. Here’s a list of 10 great restaurants that will be leaving the light on for you for Thanksgiving dinner.

Bell Book & Candle, 141 West 10th Street

From noon to 8 p.m., diners can enjoy a $55 feast that includes a choice of butternut squash soup or mixed greens salad, a heritage turkey with pan gravy, sides like sourdough sage stuffing, and dessert. Children under the age of 10 can dine for $30, and you can parade your relatives around the West Village when it’s all over.

Calle Dão, 38 West 39th Street

Sick of the same old butterball that winds up on Grandma’s table each year? Consider a change of pace with a Peking-style turkey served with steamed buns, bok choy, and tostones, among other Cuban-Chinese treats. The restaurant’s three-course dinner also includes a select complimentary beverage. The meal costs $50 per person (tax and gratuity not included).

Carmine’s, 200 West 44th Street/2450 Broadway

If you plan on rolling deep Thursday, both locations of Manhattan’s famed Italian eatery are prepared to feed you and up to seven friends until you can’t take any more. For a total of $239.95 for your whole party, you can feast on an 18-pound roasted turkey with giblet gravy, stuffing, and traditional Thanksgiving sides like sweet potatoes and homemade cranberry sauce. To cap off the meal, each guest gets a slice of pumpkin, apple, or pecan pie.

DBGB Kitchen and Bar, 299 Bowery

From noon to 9 p.m., guests in Daniel Boulud’s East Village dining room can enjoy a $60 three-course menu that includes a number of choices for appetizers, entrees, and desserts. Order the traditional turkey for your main, or go for “The Gobbler,” a seven-ounce turkey burger with grilled radicchio slaw, toasted pumpkin seeds, and cranberry ketchup. An à la carte menu will also be served in the bar area.

Edi & the Wolf, 102 Avenue C

In celebration of this uniquely American holiday, chefs Eduard Frauneder and Wolfgang Ban are offering an Austrian-inspired Thanksgiving four-course prix fixe for $59. Offerings include items like pretzel soufflé, pickled pumpkin flatbread, and roasted duck. Pair your feast to Austrian and German beer or wine.

Il Mulino Prime, 331 West Broadway

For an Italian accent on this classic American feast, chef Michelle Mazza is offering a $50 three-course dinner package that includes items like fresh mozzarella, grilled vegetables, green beans marinara, and roasted turkey. Tasked with a last-minute dessert run? Pick up a pumpkin cheesecake here for $65.

Jacob’s Pickles, 509 Amsterdam Avenue

For a Southern twist on this holiday, head to Jacob’s Pickles for a $45 six-course feast. The meal includes pickles and biscuits for the table followed by deviled eggs, a harvest salad, and butternut squash soup. Entrees include a choice of a Heritage Farm turkey leg, cider-glazed salmon, or crispy flat-iron pork steak. Seatings are available between 2 and 6 p.m.

Meadowsweet, 149 Broadway, Brooklyn

This brand-new Williamsburg restaurant is getting in on the holiday with a three-course prix fixe Thanksgiving dinner for $75. From 2 to 8 p.m., guests can enjoy a choice of sweet potato agnolotti, roasted and braised turkey with cornbread stuffing, potato-crusted halibut, or braised lamb shank. Pastry chef Jared Rubin’s desserts include a roasted pumpkin ice cream pie.

Reynards, 80 Wythe Avenue, Brooklyn

Also in Williamsburg, albeit on the other side of the neighborhood, Reynards is offering a five-course prix fixe dinner menu for $87. Chef Sean Rembold is cooking up goodies like spiced carrot soup, grilled squash with apple butter, grilled turkey breast, and hunter-style rabbit. Reservations are being accepted from noon to 8 p.m.

Water’s Edge, 4-01 44th Drive, Queens

Craving a room with a view? This Long Island City waterfront restaurant is hosting seatings for Thanksgiving Day between 1 and 8 p.m. Opt for a $65 dinner package or pay $20 more to gain access to an open bar during your meal (upper level only). The three-course menu includes choices like fried calamari, roasted loin of lamb, and Chilean sea bass, in addition to the obligatory turkey entrant.


This Weekend’s Five Best Food Events – 11/14/2014

Need a calm before the storm that is Thanksgiving Day travel plans? Here are five events that’ll put your mind and body in a delicious place.

Meet NY’s Legendary Cronut™ creator, Dominique Ansel, Williams-Sonoma, 10 Columbus Circle, Saturday, 12 p.m.

Instead of braving the line at his bakery, sign up to meet Dominique Ansel without having to wait in the cold. Though Cronuts won’t be served, guests can meet the prolific pastry chef and walk away with a signed copy of his latest cookbook, Dominique Ansel: The Secret Recipes. Attendees will learn more about Ansel’s background in classic French technique as well as discuss some of the chef’s most treasured recipes; you’ll need to reserve ahead of time.

Ninth Annual Thanksgiving Workshop, Bottlerocket Wines, 5 West 19th Street, Saturday, 1 p.m.

Selecting the right wine for your Thanksgiving meal — or drunk uncle — can be a challenge. This class is designed to help you choose the perfect red or white to accompany your turkey and its trimmings, with guests being able to taste holiday dishes paired with 12 wines and spirits. Tickets are $20.

Amphorae-Aged Wine, Anfora, 34 Eighth Avenue, Saturday, 3:30 p.m.

Want to drink like a gladiator? Consider visiting Anfora this week, where owner and wine enthusiast Joe Campanale will lead guests through a private tasting tour on amphorae-aged wines, which are aged in clay vessels as opposed to barrels. Sip samples while Campanale discusses ancient wine-making techniques. Tickets are $55.

Out to See, South Street Seaport, 19 Fulton Street, Saturday and Sunday, 11 a.m.

This two-day festival celebrates the vibrancy of the seaport with art, music, and plenty of food. After taking a 3-D self-portrait, festivalgoers can enjoy artisan chocolate from Lululosophy or look into designer cakes from Cake Heights. Participating restaurants include Nelson Blue and Fresh Salt.

Brooklyn Chili Takedown, The Bell House, 149 7th Street, Brooklyn, Sunday, 2 p.m.

If you’ve missed out on other opportunities to stuff your face with chili, consider this weekend’s chance to battle the arctic blast with hot sauce. Guests will have the chance to sample varieties of chili from all across Brooklyn, and Caleb’s Kola cocktails will be available to put out mouth fires. Interested chefs can email for more information on how to participate in this year’s event; tickets are $20.