If the thought of spending Thanksgiving eating the same dry turkey and arguing politics with Uncle Marty and Aunt Liz leaves you longing for the chance to do something different, there are several local opportunities to try something unique before, during and after the holiday — and save your sanity and familial ties in the process.
The Iron Room
The traditional cheer of “It’s Beaujolais time!” will ring loud and true on Thursday, Nov. 15, at the Iron Room (648 N. Albany Ave. in Atlantic City), when the restaurant holds its first-ever Beaujolais Day and Turducken Sandwiches event from 6 to 9 p.m.
Made from Gamay grapes in a region just south of Burgundy in east-central France, the young but delicious purple-pink Beaujolais wine traditionally becomes available to the public amid great fanfare on Nov. 15 each year. Because of its release just before Thanksgiving, and because it pairs well with many of the dishes typically found on a Thanksgiving table, Beaujolais has become one of the more popular wines to serve in America on Turkey Day.
One of the foods that goes nicely with Beaujolais is fowl, so The Iron Room is offering turducken sandwiches — a New Orleans specialty made famous by legendary Cajun Chef Paul Prudhomme. It is a turkey stuffed with a chicken stuffed with a duck — a dish that every carnivore is sure to be thankful for.
But The Iron’s Room’s turducken sandwich is a playful twist on the traditional, according to Chef Kevin Cronin. “Our sandwich will be like turducken in that all three meats will be on the sandwich,” he notes. “But ours will be like a Monte Cristo filled with duck confit, pulled barbecue chicken and turkey. It’ll be delicious.”
To accompany your sandwich, the Iron Room will have several varieties of Beaujolais available, with prices varying.
Looking to ditch the kiddie table in favor of a different, more refined Thanksgiving dinner? Capriccio, located inside Resorts Casino in Atlantic City, is your answer.
One of Atlantic City’s finest Italian restaurants, Capriccio (Italian for “whim”) will offer a traditional turkey or a turducken dinner on Thanksgiving Day, Nov. 22, just as it has for the past several years. For $44.95 per person, dinners are a three-course affair.
Start your Thanksgiving feast with a choice of roasted winter squash soup, crispy prosciutto ricotta salata or a Fall salad (roasted pears, watercress, candied walnuts, craisins, gorgonzola crostini and a white balsamic vinaigrette), then select your entrée of either roasted turkey or turducken. Desserts are appropriately decadent and delicious with choices that include caramel-spiced pumpkin parfait, chocolate pecan pie or strawberry cheesecake gelato.
After sufficiently digesting and growing hungry again, head south on Black Friday and Small Business Saturday to Spiaggetta (9300 3rd Ave. in Stone Harbor) where, in true Italian style, owner Marco Tarantino will offer “Wild Game Weekend,” Friday and Saturday, Nov. 23 and 24.
Diners seeking a break from the seemingly endless parade of turkey sandwiches, turkey soup, turkey hash and whatever else can be concocted from Thanksgiving leftovers are certain to find what they are looking for at this comfortable restaurant that has been serving the public since 2010.
In addition to their regular menu, Spiaggetta will serve grilled venison sausages with broccoli rabe rustic polenta, handmade pappardelle with wild boar ragu, bone-in pheasant “cacciatore style” with roasted rosemary potatoes, and bison filet mignon with Jack Daniels reduction.
Prices for the wild game dishes will range from $25 to $38, with appetizers, sides and desserts being a la carte. Spiaggetta is a BYOB, so if you plan on visiting, be sure to bring you own bottle of wine with you — like a nice Beaujolais, perhaps?
With so many unique options available locally to help switch up your Thanksgiving routine, starting you own, new holiday tradition has never been easier.