No sooner has the last Halloween costume and bag of candy been swept from the retail shelves and the great national Holiday of Thanksgiving takes center stage. Whether you’re hosting guests from all over, traveling for your own Turkey Day dinner, or just having a quiet family day on the 24th, there’s some prep to be done.
The elephant — or, rather, turkey — in the room has to be Whole Foods. You can order your turkey (and all sorts of other thanksgiving staples) online, outsource a lot of hard work and pick up your Thanksgiving dinner right here in downtown Novato. If you’d rather cook your own, and take all the credit, they have you covered too, with online recipes for classics like green bean casserole (with a panko crust twist).
If you’re a guest at someone else’s Thanksgiving dinner, consider locally-sourcing your host gift, with a few bottles from Novato’s own Trek Winery. If you haven’t visited their Tasting Room lately (it’s open Wednesday – Sunday, check their site for hours) it’s a much more civilized (and fun) way of selecting some wine to gift than standing in line at the store.
For the beer loving host, take a trip to Novato’s new home of craft ale, Beercraft. Staffed by beer obsessives, Beercraft has a range of quality bottled beers with as many tasting notes and talking-points as any good wine. If you want something a little special that goes well with turkey, ask the Beercraft guys for a Thanksgiving recommendation.
Planning a more frugal Thanksgiving? As US News recommends, you can bring a wonderful dinner together on time and under budget, as long as you do a little planning. Prepared sides can be a great convenience, but you can’t beat a home-baked pie, or some freshly-prepared veggies.
With a Lucky on Grant Ave, Safeway on Nave Drive and Diablo Ave, Harvest Market on San Marin Drive and Nugget Markets on Ignacio, Novato shoppers have plenty of options when it comes to filling the Thanksgiving shopping cart with fresh produce. There are also affordable own-brand Thanksgiving options for Trader Joe’s fans and esoteric bargain hunters can enjoy surprising finds at Grocery Outlet.
If you want to skip the kitchen all together, you can enjoy Thanksgiving Dinner at Rickey’s, where you’ll find a special seasonal menu from 2pm-7pm (including gluten free options). Alternatively, take in the views at Novato’s Hilltop 1892, which is serving its traditional Thanksgiving feast from 11am till 8pm. On Grant Ave, Finnegan’s is open 365 days of the year, including Thanksgiving. They’re rated Marin’s Best Bar/Restaurant, according to Pacific Sun readers, and sure to offer something that blends traditional Thanksgiving fare with welcoming Irish bar ambience.
As for making exercise part of your Thanksgiving plan (and you probably should), it’s back to Whole Foods, where you can pick up a race packet for the Marin Turkey Trot. The race itself starts at 1800 Ignacio Blvd, and is a smart addition to your family traditions, because once you’ve run the Turkey Trot you’ll feel like you earned the feast that is to come.