The last time attorney Margaret Rosenthal spent Thanksgiving dinner at a friend’s house, the place almost burned down. When the repairman came out to fix the leaking stove, his rags caught fire. “I don’t remember ever gassing the place at Suzanne’s,” Rosenthal says with a laugh. “Suzanne” is Suzanne Tracht, chef-owner of Jar, the restaurant where Rosenthal has spent most of her holiday dinners for the past five years. The Beverly Boulevard chophouse is one of a multitude of fine-dining spots that keep the ovens lit on Thanksgiving. Tables at top restaurants like Craft, Mélisse, and Akasha are packed with folks who would rather leave the trussing, basting, mashing, and baking to the pros.
“I don’t miss the ritual of cooking at all,” says Rosenthal. “We enjoy sitting and talking and not dealing with the making of the holiday.” Jar’s Thanks-giving menu skews traditional, but Rosenthal is looking forward this year to Tracht’s originals, too, like chestnut-chickpea soup and oyster stew with Chinese celery. At the Four Seasons Beverly Hills, diners make return trips to the expansive buffet for rosemary-honey-glazed turkey (and Belgian waffles and eggs Benedict). In previous years Brandon Boudet has served deep-fried turkeys at Little Dom’s in Los Feliz, and the Stinking Rose, true to form, roasts its birds with a purported 400 cloves of garlic.
But eating out on Thanksgiving needn’t be so fancy. At Ye Rustic Inn, a dive down the street from Little Dom’s, the no-frills meal of turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, and the like comes to around ten bucks. That’s where sound mixer Todd Yeager and a group of friends have dined every Thanksgiving since 2009. “It’s kind of an old-man bar,” says Yeager. And, just as at home, “turkey eating is always followed by football watching.” Well, that and karaoke.
Open Wide: Where to Get It:
Four Seasons Beverly Hills
300 S. Doheny Dr., L.A.
8225 Beverly Blvd., Beverly Grove
2128 Hillhurst Ave., Los Feliz
The Stinking Rose
55 N. La Cienega Blvd., Beverly Hills
[Photograph by Andrea Bricco]