11/13/2012 05:17:00 PM

Don't Go Home for the Holiday: Thanksgiving in Chicago

An affordable yet fancy feast at Bistronomic
First, a shout out to all the broke students stranded in Chicago while their families eat without them. We feel your pain and so does this modern French bistro. A three-course prix fixe that includes dishes such as duck confit, chicken liver terrine, roast turkey, wild mushroom ravioli and apple tarte tatin is available for $40 to students who show their school ID. Let’s see mom top that menu. If she gets jealous and wants to join, the non-student price is $46. 312-944-8400.

Chicago q
Southern hospitality is on the menu in addition to a free-range turkey, smoked in-house and accompanied by roasted turkey gravy and cranberry orange compote. Sides served with this home-style feat include haricots verts with pork belly and caramelized onions, whipped new red and Yukon Gold potatoes, pork sausage and Granny Smith apple stuffing and candied fingerling sweet potatoes. No Thanksgiving is complete without a plate full of desserts, so choose from bourbon bread pudding or pumpkin pie. An individual meal costs $33.50 or serve the whole family for $195. 312-642-1160.

Fulton’s on the River
This dinner with a view offers some upscale takes of classics including brioche stuffing and sweet potato, apple bisque, roasted pork shoulder, banana cream pie and apple crisp. Some festive treats for the grown-ups are the Thanksgiving Manhattan made with Wild Turkey, vermouth and a cranberry shrub, or the Mayflower Martini made with Plymouth Gin and fall spices. The prix fixe meal is available for $49.95 for adults and $15.95 for children. 312-822-0100.

Hash House A Go Go
It may not be just like grandma used to make, but the oversized offerings here are just as comforting. A special a la carte menu will feature stuffed turkey meatloaf with griddled smoked mozzarella, grilled onions, spinach, charred tomato and barbeque cream sauce; maple-glazed pork tenderloin with fresh nutmeg apple sauce, wild boar bacon mashed potatoes, corn on the cobb and crispy leaks; and roasted turkey breast with rosemary gravy, mashed potatoes, “old school” stuffing, carrots and green beans. The restaurant’s regular “twisted farm food” menu will also be available. 312-202-0994.

For those who can’t go home for the holiday, executive chef Joseph Rose will be serving a prix-fixe meal with all the traditional fixings such as maple honey molasses roasted turkey with rhubarb compote, chestnuts, pistachio stuffing and gravy; sweet potato marshmallow gratin; and buttermilk mashed potatoes. Because this is a bit fancier than the family table, more elegant options include Harbor Point smoked salmon and strip loin with corn succotash and Pinot Noir reduction. The dinner costs $65 for adults, $55 for seniors and $30 for children. 312-917-3404.

Timothy O’Toole’s
For those who cannot escape their family gathering packed with lumpy gravy and dry turkey, take comfort in eating something even less appetizing the night before. The Third Annual Turkey Testicle Festival takes place on Black Wednesday, November 21 at 9 PM. Whoever can eat the most turkey testicles will walk away with whole frozen turkey to serve at home on Thanksgiving Day (maybe just don’t tell anyone the demeaning price paid for that bird). Another competition, less reminiscent of an episode of Fear Factor, will take place at 11 PM and involves nothing more than eating as much pumpkin pie as humanly possible. Spectators can dine on 
deep-fried turkey testicles with a choice of dipping sauce for $6.99. 312-642-0700.


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