Thanksgiving Recommendations

Posted by on Nov 11, 2016 in News

thanksgiving-2016Back in the good old days almost everyone stayed home by the fire and cooked Thanksgiving dinner. My how times change. Used to be that just hotels were open on Thanksgiving day in Austin but that is no longer the case. Here are some favorites.

Trio at the Four Seasons.

This is the ultimate brunch for Thanksgiving but alas there is no room in the inn this year, The restaurants and the ballrooms are booked solid. But there’s always a waiting list. And if you manage to get in, the buffet is spectacular. They have sushi and succulent shrimp and crab claws. The pasta salads are terrific and the pumpkin bran muffins are to die for. The omelet bar is the best around and their turkey is always stunning with lovely stuffing and gravy. Nag them. Call several times. But try to get in. Elmar Prabs [exec chef] began this place and he is the very best.

The Russian House

Vladamir and Varda put on a hell of a spread from 11-11 all day Thanksgiving, You want interesting food? Try the Ukranian Borcsch, the Pork Schnitzel, the Uzbek Plov [a hearty rice dish with lamb, carrots and onions] and don’t forget to try the Homemade Pelmeni [dumplings with minced meat] and they are delicious.
If you haven;t tried their food, do yourself a favor. You’ll enjoy it.

Hoover’s Cooking

This is a Balon family favorite. Hoover is open from 11-7 on Manor Road and his food is simply described as Southern Comfort. It’ll be a limited menu with Turkey and all the stuffings, hams, and all the great veggies and pies Hoover is famous for. I think we’ll see you there.

Moonshine Patio Bar and Grill

This place and its proprietors, Chuck Smith and Larry Perdido took over on Red River in the space where Emelia’s used to be and they’ve been going great guns ever since. They’l be open from 10-4 with an all-you-can-eat buffet and I suspect it will be smokin good. Maybe Larry will throw in some of the famous Red Velvet Cake of his, You simply cannot go wrong with this place.

24 Diner

The original location on N. Lamar [and now a 2nd location at the Domain] will begin a $29 Turkey and everything special at 10:30am. I for one love their Sweet Potato Hash and their Fried Chicken which will all be available as well

Capital Grille

When Darden Restaurants bought Eddie V’s some years ago, we became acquainted with their higher end concept, The Capital Grille. It’s a good restaurant and it will be open Thanksgiving. They have the regular menu. and a special Turkey et al pre-fixe for $38 [$15 for kids 12 and under]. Heard a lot about this last year and got good feedback.

Lonesome Dove

This is one of our Top 25 restaurants and it will be open from 11-8 on Thanksgiving. The regular menu will be available as well as a special roast turkey preparation. Chef Tim Love has done a great job with this restaurant and i guarantee you’ll enjoy it.


There is no place that I would rather eat Chinese food on Thanksgiving than at Ronald Cheng’s Chinatown restaurants. Alas, only one oif the restaurants will be doing a dim sum brunch from 11-3 and that is the Greystone location off Mopac., If you haven’t had dim sum at Chinatown you are in for something special. The pork dumplings are amazing as are the shumai [pork and shrimp].
They have waiters like Jimmy and Freddy who have been with Ronald for years and make the entire experience a seamless and delightful event.

The Driskill Grill.

It’s amazing how the acquisition of one chef {David Bull[ can change a restaurant’s fortunes. Well that happened to the Driskill. And even though Bull is long gone, the quality he instilled remains. The spacious ballrooms at the hotel will be the scene of a gigantic Thanksgiving buffet. We’ve dined there in years past and the array of goodies has been splendid. Plus one of the all-time great roast turkeys I’ve ever had. Get to this one if you can.

The Black Sheep Lodge

If you’re in the mood for something more casual try the Black Sheep Lodge on S Lamar. They’ve got a pulled turkey sandwich with sauce and a variety of burgers. Lots of TVs for UT football watching as well, Actually it’s a pretty good little joint. One of the newer places on S. Lamar.

Estancia Churrascaria

This is a better and less expensive version of Fogo de Chao. It’s at the Arboretum and once you’ve tasted their enormous salad bar and and their incredible Pichana [top round] you’ll understand why people go nuts over Brazilian BBQ. They operate under the concept of espeto comido where they put a green flag on your table. They keep bringing you food until you turn the flag over. Works for me! Great spot for Thanksgiving

Trace at the W Hotel

Like Trio, this is a stellar restaurant. Went there a couple of years ago and it was nothing short of sensational. Book early and you will be rewarded.

III Forks

Another of our Top 25 restaurants, III Forks will be open from 12-6. They ranked #1 in our recent Austin steak poll. So if you are thinking about steak or seafood, this place is an ideal spot. How about a Wagyu 48 oz bone-in Ribeye to capture your imagination?

Leave a Reply