Your Thanksgiving planner
Though the weather feels more like June than November, Thanksgiving -- and the rest of the holiday season -- are nearly upon us. If slaving over a stove in this 80-degree weather doesn't sound appetizing, here are some local restaurants that are out to lend a helping hand this year.
Take advantage of the heat and head outdoors. Descanso's menu includes herbed stuffing, brown sugar-brined roasted turkey and cane sugar-roasted sweet potatoes with marshmallow meringue.
$37 Descanso members, $45 adults non-member, $15 kids 12 and under, free for kids under age 3
Celebrate with a hickory-smoked turkey and all the Southern-inspired trimmings you can imagine (roasted yam puree, Southern-style green beans, cornbread, hush puppies and collard greens are just a few of the sides on offer). The 14- to 16-pound pre-cooked turkeys can be picked up the day of, so as to guarantee there's more time for mingling and less time spent slaving over the stove (or in this case, the smoker)
$65 for the turkey and $8.95-$10.95 for quart-portioned sides
One of downtown Los Angeles' most famed steakhouses is serving up hand-carved turkey or roasted prime rib with your choice of brioche/sage or cornbread/raisin stuffing served with all the traditional Thanksgiving fixings. The dinner is also available to go with 48-hour notice.
$32 adults, $15.95 children under 12, free for children under age 3
Enjoy an Italian-style Thanksgiving with ribollita soup, pumpkin tortelloni, homemade wild boar ragù pappardelle, grilled beef tenderloin in Barolo and creamy pumpkin pie. Pair that up with some of the restaurant's fabulous Italian-style wines, and you might even forget that you skipped the trip back east to visit the in-laws.
$39 adults, $15.95 children 12 and under
Pinot Bistro will be doing a three-course, prix-fixe Thanksgiving dinner. Fall friendly dishes on offer are a roasted butternut squash soup with fried sage, roasted turkey breast in a dark meat roulade with brioche and shiitake stuffing and orange juice candied yams, Guayaquil chocolate mousse or creamy pumpkin pie.
$45 adults, $15.95 children 12 and under
Josiah Citrin's menu showcases American classics with a French twist. Some of the appetizer options include fire-roasted pumpkin soup or foie gras served with glazed apples and a Calvados reduction. For entrees, guests can choose between sea bass, prime rib or free-range turkey. All dishes come with praline pecan yams, roasted root veggies, cranberry sauce and mashed potatoes. Keep it classic for dessert with apple, pumpkin or pecan pie. If you're still feeling saucy, there's also an option for a flourless chocolate cake. Check in with the restaurant for the full menu.
$65 per guest, $25 for children under age 8
Patina will be hosting a four-course prix-fixe menu for Thanksgiving dinner downtown. The menu includes smoked stripe bass, Moroccan pumpkin heirloom apple velouté, pepper-cress agnolotti, Pacific opaka fillet with toasted almonds and polenta fries, and a black currant and chestnut rissole with honey ice cream. Since you're right across from Disney Hall, go for a walk around this upscale area of downtown to work off that delicious Splichal-crafted turkey dinner.
$60 adults, $30 children 12 and under
Enjoy a traditional feast with all the classic trimmings. Organic turkey roast is served with gravy and homemade cranberry relish in the downstairs bistro for $24 per person. At the upstairs Morels Steakhouse, guests can enjoy a three-course prix-fixe for $65 per person. Dinner includes spiced pumpkin soup, organic turkey roast served with corn bread, apples and dried fruit brioche stuffing, mashed potatoes, or candied yams with pecans and sautéed haricots verts and a three-layer chocolate cake with cinnamon ice cream.
$24 in the bistro, $65 in the steakhouse
-- Krista Simmons
Photo: Lattice top apple pie. Credit: Krista Simmons