Between less and less subtle advertising, festive snacks at the grocery store and a growing range of cozy decorations available for purchase, the signs are undeniable. The holiday season is just around the corner. But before you dive into all that these upcoming celebrations bring, there’s one more step between the end of fall and the start of the most wonderful time of the year: Thanksgiving.
Since the upcoming season can be more annoying than fun for some, this could be a way to take the pressure off of cooking for a crowd to lighten the load and really enjoy partying with those you’re most grateful for . If you’re looking to make a reservation for a feast at a local restaurant on November 24th, this list is for you.
These Baltimore kitchens serve up a mix of classic Thanksgiving dishes and creative seasonal twists that are sure to fill your stomach and heart:
The capital grill: There’s something nostalgic about these classic holiday dishes. This downtown destination keeps it simple and delicious on Thanksgiving Day with a three-course Prix fix of turkey, stuffing, green beans, and mashed potatoes. If you’re in the mood for a treat, extras include pumpkin cheesecake and pecan-crusted sweet potatoes with hot honey. 500 E. Pratt St. Reservations required. 11am-9pm $17-$47. 443-703-4064
Charleston: If you and your crew are in the mood for something elegant this year, Chef Cindy Wolf’s three-course meal at her hotspot Harbor East might be just the ticket. Choose from appetizers like cream of shrimp soup or a flavorful salad with pomegranate and goat cheese; Entrees ranging from a leveled turkey and stuffed plate to a hearty dish of short ribs and mashed potatoes; and desserts with flavors and spices that will warm your body and soul. Family supplements are also available. 1000 Lancaster St. Reservation required. 1pm-6:30pm $95. 410-332-7373.
Cindy Lou’s Fish House: From turkey and gravy to roasted spaghetti squash, the small but varied Thanksgiving menu at this Harbor Point spot has something for everyone. The three-course menu offers soups and salads, a variety of appetizers and delicious desserts, as well as side dishes to share with friends and family. 1215 Willis St. Reservations recommended. 12pm-7pm $55. 443-960-8670.
Johnny’s: Roland Park regulars will be happy to know that Johnny’s offers its plethora of delicious buffet style dishes. There you can have it all, whether you want to start your meal with a flavorful soup or salad, or jump straight into entrees like mushroom lasagna, roast turkey breast, or braised short ribs. Dessert lovers in particular will be grateful, with delicious options like pumpkin velvet pie and a coconut caramel butterfinger cheesecake sure to satisfy a sweet tooth. 4800 Roland Ave. Reservations recommended. 11am-6pm $23-$42. 410-773-0777.
The Milton Inn: As it should be, the special map of this Sparks landmark is all about fall. You and your family can look forward to soothing flavors like butternut squash, honey apple crunch, chestnut and cranberry. Choose from carefully prepared soups and salads, entrees that include everything from turkey to pasta, and flavorful desserts to complete your special meal. 14833 York Road, Sparks. Reservation required, currently on a wait list. 1-7 p.m. Three-course prix fix meal, $75. 410-771-4366.
Mt Washington Tavern: Attention vegetarians and turkey haters – this is for you. In addition to classic dishes like roast turkey and honey baked ham, Mt. Washington Tavern offers a dish called Just the Sides that includes mashed potatoes, green beans, sauerkraut, and stuffing. Customers can also choose from a variety of starters, main courses and a la carte specialities. 5700 Newbury St. Reservation required. 12pm-7pm special menu, prices vary. 410-367-6903.
Rusty Scupper: If buffets are more your style, look no further. Head to this trusty Key Highway overlooking the Inner Harbor for a bounty of Thanksgiving selections to suit all appetites. Guests can look forward to more traditional fare like turkey and pumpkin pie, as well as seasonal twists on seafood and side dishes like pumpkin curried PEI scallops, local oyster stuffing, and roasted spiced salmon with apple butter. 402 Key Hwy. Reservation needed. 11:30am 5:30pm $40-$75. 410-727-3678.
Ruth Chris Steakhouse: Another three-course Thanksgiving dinner, guests are guaranteed a plate of sliced turkey, stuffing, gravy and cranberry sauce. The fixed menu also includes a selection of appetizers, sides and pumpkin cheesecake with vanilla ice cream for dessert. 711 Eastern Ave. Reservations recommended. 11am-8pm $17-$44. 410-230-0033.
Viktoria Gastropub: Celebrate the holidays with friendly faces at this Howard County premier restaurant, which offers set meals for two courses for $35 or three courses for $45. Pub-style options include turkey stew, harvest flatbread, chicken pie “inverted”, butternut squash ravioli and of course a traditional turkey plate with birds from Fulton’s Sho Nuf Farm. Guests can also look forward to featured fall cocktails (the cran-apple sour with cinnamon-apple bourbon looks like a winner), as well as apple pie cheesecake and butterscotch bread pudding for dessert. 8201 Snowden River Pkwy. Columbia. Reservations recommended. 12pm-8pm $35-45. 410-750-1880.