From Laguna Niguel to Long Beach, we sorted through the many offerings to report on our favorites. Whether you eat there or pick up and take elsewhere, next Thursday is sure to be a fulfilling dining event. Make those reservations, and remember to pick up a newspaper Thanksgiving morning; you’ll need to research Black Friday deals. After all the carbs consumed, walking it off while you figure out gifts makes sense. (P.S. Unless specified, these do not include tax or gratuity.)
Provenance – Newport Beach
Take your pick: Three courses ($51.50) from 12:30 p.m. to 7 p.m., or placing an order by this Friday at 5 p.m. to guarantee pick up on Wednesday between noon and 5 p.m. The restaurant can accommodate orders from intimate dates to groups of 200. Either way, expect some good-looking, preservative-free birds. Call ahead for reservations and more information. 2531 Eastbluff Dr., Newport Beach, (949) 718-0477; www.provenanceoc.com.
555 East – Long Beach
Considered by staff as “better than your grandma’s business,” discover three courses for $47. Homemade cornbread stuffing with Andouille sausage always gets us salivating. Make a reservation, and see why it remains one of the great dining rooms in the area. 555 E. Ocean Blvd., Long Beach, (562) 437-0626; www.555east.com.
Morton’s The Steakhouse – Santa Ana
Nontraditional diners will be headed toward South Coast Plaza’s neighborhood. While holiday classics are not on the menu, steak, lobster and a 36-ounce Cote de Boeuf are. Try pairing any of them with a Holiday Bliss cocktail, which has Grey Goose, Passoa passion fruit liqueur, cranberry and lemon juices, and simple syrup. 1641 W. Sunflower Ave., Santa Ana, (714) 444-4834; www.mortons.com.
Hendrix – Laguna Niguel
Goodies such as Scottish salmon filet and pumpkin upside-down cake are a couple of the reasons why we are digging chef Rainer Schwarz’s cuisine. Stay for the course trio for $65, or order a feast to feed a dozen of your family and friends for $400. The choice is yours. 32431 Golden Lantern, Laguna Niguel, (949) 248-1912; www.hendrixoc.com.
Montage Resort – Laguna Beach
No matter your mood, Montage Resort can take care of you and your loved ones on Thanksgiving. The Loft will be the only food service offering an à la carte menu through noon. The Masterpiece Thanksgiving Celebration includes a dozen food stations to choose from between 1 and 6 p.m. Lastly, Studio is available between 11 a.m. and 4 p.m., as a buffet served on the lawn. After 4 p.m., the standard menu at Studio is available. 30801 S. Coast Hwy., Laguna Beach, (949) 715-6000; www.montagelagunabeach.com.
A contributing writer for OC Weekly, Anne Marie freelances for multiple online and print publications, and guest judges for culinary competitions. A Bay Area transplant, she graduated with a degree in Hospitality Management from Cal Poly Pomona. Find her on Instagram as brekkiefan.