With only a few weeks left until the Christmas holidays, Thanksgiving Day 2013 in London is a good opportunity for Americans and fans of the US food and drink culture to give their festive taste buds a trial run. Whether you’re on a tight budget or looking to splash the cash and treat your family to a proper traditional Thanksgiving Day dinner, Thursday 28 November 2013 can be a truly American day in London, if you have a few Thanksgiving ideas up your sleeve.
Budget London: Blues, Football and Pop-Ups
Fitzrovia’s home of live music and big screen sports action, Jetlag, is in a Thanksgiving Day mood for the entire day, screening NFL matinee movies and live NFL Thanksgiving football games later on (Green Bay Packers V Detroit Lions and Oakland Raiders V Dallas Cowboys). To maintain the pace, the Thanksgiving menu includes pumpkin soup with bacon and cheese rolls (£5.50); roast turkey with whipped potato and apple cider gravy (£17.50); and a choice of either pecan pie or pumpkin pie (£6.50) for dessert. The celebration continues after the football with a live classic rock, pop and blues set from Mr Lee.
If Blues is your sweet, sweet thang, head to north London’s home of guitar-based American rock, The Blues Kitchen (pictured above), to check out The Untouchables, champions of raw Chicago blues. The Thanksgiving Day recipe for fun will also include an all-American Thanksgiving meal (pre-orders only) with dishes such as roast turkey with side dishes of roast potatoes, cranberry jelly, cornbread, steamed greens, Mac & Cheese and corn on the cob, with pumpkin pie for dessert, all for only £16 per person. Pumpkin ale will be flowing for the occasion and a DJ will be spinning vintage sounds until 1am.
All four of London’s American Bodean’s BBQ smokehouse restaurants will be screening live NFL football games to complement their Thanksgiving turkey and ham sharing platter with cornbread stuffing, sandwiched between a clam chowder starter and a key lime pie dessert, all for only £22.95. Keep an eye out for the Brooklyn Brewery Pumpkin Ale too.
Grumblings From A Greedy Girl
Grumblings From A Greedy Girl will host a special American Thanksgiving pop-up evening in Tooting Market, for those with an intrepid heart. Here you can enjoy Thanksgiving food such as sweet potato soup topped with floating salted chilli marshmallows; turkey and cranberry sauce burgers with sausage stuffing on cornbread and pecan pie bars (pictured above). Diners can expect Thanksgiving activities like the Man V Food challenge, basketball hoops and a DJ. £30 per person, booking necessary.
London’s star-spangled banner of American celebrity, Planet Hollywood, will have a two-course Thanksgiving Day lunch and dinner menu for £14.95 or, for those with serious American appetites, three courses for £19.95.
Covent Garden’s classic American restaurant, Joe Allen (pictured above), is serving a traditional menu for £40 per person, including the Thanksgiving appetiser pulled pork and duck terrine with spiced plum and sour dough, followed by Sussex bronze slow-cooked Thanksgiving turkey and maple bacon bangers, pumpkin pie and marinated cherries, and coffee with petit fours.
Christopher’s, another classic American restaurant in London’s West End, has an all-day three-course Thanksgiving Day menu which boasts a wide selection of stateside cuisine, such as the slow-cooked ballotine of organic turkey served with side dishes of cornbread, hazelnut and Michigan cherry stuffing, cranberry relish, buttered beans and creamed potatoes. Leave enough room for the peanut butter chocolate tart dessert though. £48 per person, reservations required.
The Northall, a grand restaurant in the Corinthia Hotel near Trafalgar Square, requires £65 from adults and £35 for kids in return for its lavish Thanksgiving Day lunch and dinner menu, promising (deep breath, here goes): Maryland softshell crab with southern spices; free range bronze turkey with sourdough, apple and golden raisin stuffing, roast sweet potato mash with raisins and marshmallow, Pennsylvania creamed corn, and pickled red cabbage; plus, lemon meringue pie for dessert; phew!
One of London’s most recent American home-from-home additions, The Lockhart, is going one better than simple US food from 28 November – 1 December, with a Thanksgiving dinner menu paired with Californian wines. The Thanksgiving menu will be served family-style with starters to share; two main courses – including the traditional smoked heritage turkey; plus desserts of pecan pie with maple bourbon ice cream, and the classic pumpkin pie served with vanilla whipped cream. £60 per person (includes wines and a small recipe book containing tips on how to replicate this Thanksgiving dinner at home).
Also celebrating Thanksgiving Day in London…
CUT at 45 Park Lane is offering a three-course Thanksgiving dinner on 28 November for £90 per person. Stop off at Bar 45 (in the same hotel) first for a special Thanksgiving cocktail, priced at £16, which changes colour using an ice infusion.
Trader Vic’s, a recently-refurbished restaurant, also on Park Lane, will be adding pumpkin and shiitake mushroom eggrolls to the starter menu alongside roasted Diestel Thanksgiving turkey with traditional giblet gravy. Meyer lemon cranberry curd cheesecake is lined up for dessert.