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Sep 24, 2003 04:33 PM

Williamsburg, VA -- Thanksgiving Dinner?

  • r

The ladies of my family will be traveling from DC to Williamsburg for Thanksgiving this year. (The men go deer hunting, btw.)

We will be staying at The Marriott at Ford's Colony so we can have some laid back breakfasts in the room. Lunch will probably be somewhere near wherever we end up, as we always fly by the seat of our pants. None of us are too into the colonial stuff, but I think we will use the day after Thanksgiving as the day we go to the historical area.

We plan to eat at Trellis on Friday night, but I am at a loss for where we should head for Thanksgiving supper. We are in it for the food. Two of us don't eat meat, but we do eat seafood.

King's Arms? Shield's? A buffet at Kingsmill? Help is needed.

Any other eats we shouldn't miss would be appreciated as well.

Thank you.


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  1. m

    I would definitely head to a colonial tavern for Thanksgiving dinner. King's Arms is far and away my favorite, but you might also want to consider Christiana Campbell's, which specializes in seafood. Another choice, on the expensive end of the spectrum, would be the dining room at the Williamsburg Inn (I believe it's called the Regency Room).

    If you're looking for a casual lunch, you shouldn't miss the Cheese Shop in Merchant Square (across from the Trellis). Amazing sandwiches with sandwich sauce from a secret recipe. Be sure to ask for "extra house dressing."

    1. Before you leave Ford's Colony, be sure to check out their onsite, phenomenal, but pricey (four star, I think) restaurant, The Dining Room, I believe it's called.

      It is superlatively good, is located in the Ford's Colony Golf Clubhouse, requires reservations and is sure to impress in the finest and richest Virginia traditions.

      And if you want a ride out toward the plantations on ROute 5 and don't mind about a 30 minute drive through some of tidewater Virginia's finest land, PLEASE do yourself a favor and go to Indian Fields Tavern.

      If you want something less dressy, but not Tavernish, also be sure to check out what The Cities Grill is offering.

      Other nominees would have to include The Chickahominy House on Jamestown Road for dinner (and breakfast for sure, whether they do Thanksgiving dinner or not), or The Kitchen at Powhatan Plantation, which is a time share resort but boasts one of the better restaurants in Williamsburg.

      If you need a fun little place for "college grub" don't miss Paul's Deli. Order a Hot Holly, Hot Italian, Cheesesteak or just about any other sub there, and you won't be disappointed one iota. Its a craving for alumni returning to William and Mary's campus, as is the Cheese Shop (get a sandwich with extra house dressing)!

      That ought to help a bit, but let me know if you need more details.

      2 Replies
      1. re: Matt Brandon
        Andrew Langer


        Glad to see that you're a chowhound, too!

        I've got another post on this board, but I'll repeat the question directly to you:

        We're coming to Williamsburg for homecoming (93's 10-year reunion), and are going to do a memorial dinner for a friend who passed away in February, Megan Owen.

        Do you know of any good restaurants that have private rooms? Not necessarily fancy - just someplace that 20 of us can be separated from the rest of the hustle and bustle for a late dinner.

        Yes, I know we're coming down to the wire, but we didn't get the flash of inspiration for dinner until late last week.


        - Andrew

        1. re: Andrew Langer
          Emil & Lisa Weiss


          I am inquiring about what restaurants are really great to book for Thanksgiving dinner in Williamsburg. We wanted the whole plantation style dinner. Looking to get away for a few days and would like to know of some B&B's to stay at which might possibly be Dog-friendly?

      2. Thanks for the great pointers.

        I have called about Christina Campbell's and King's Arms, which are both doing a special menu for Thanksgiving for $42.50. Given our group's pickiness, I think I would feel better going somewhere with a wider selection of items. (Previous Thanksgivings at The Homestead have spoiled us.)

        So I am checking into Ford's Colony and Indian Fields Tavern. We are laid back people by nature, but we are willing to do a more formal thing for an occasion.

        Maybe we will do one of the colonial taverns for lunch one day, but we will not miss out on all the great suggestions.

        Thanks again!


        6 Replies
        1. re: rgustafs

          The Dining Room at Ford's Colony will be closing to the public soon and the wonderful chef has left to start his own spot. SO I do not know what you will find there. The Marriott is a vacation club/timeshare so they have no restaurant just a deli/quick shop. At the junction of a Rt 5 & SR 199 in Food LIon Strip there is a spot called Florimonte's. It is an Italian deli/pizza spot with take home meals that are to die for. Everything from osso bucco, fresh pasta, sauces, soups, and great bread. A great spot to stock your kitchen.

          The new buzz in town is the Fat Canary. I have not tried it yet but here's what I know: The owner owns a beloved gourmet grocer/wine shop in town called the Cheese Shop. He originally was a partner in the Trellis when it opened 20 or more years ago. He left a few years into it. Now he has opened a new Cheese Shop and the Fat Canary directly across the street from The Trellis with his son who was a chef at a place in the Outer Banks, NC that got great reviews. It is all the gossip in town and so far reviews have been great I just haven't made it there if you go...POST!!!

          1. re: WellFedRed
            Williamsburg Student

            The Fat Canary is absolutely fabulous. The food was excellent, the service was even better, and when we told the chef two of us were vegetarians he whipped up something special and delicious just for us. In addition to being a great meal, the atmosphere had a hip, loungy feel to it that can't be beat. This is well worth the trip, and a must for anyone who will be in town.

            1. re: Williamsburg Student

              Does anyone have the contact info for the Fat Canary?

              1. re: Williamsburg Student

                Ate at the Fat Canary on February 15, 2003. Love the restaurant's logo, a singing canary with a tummy full of wine! The decor is a soothing monochromatic pistachio green. The bar and the grill are in full view of the dining area, adding to the conviviality of the space. The waiter was extremely attentive and helped narrow down some appealing wines to one that complemented three different entrees and magically appeared to refill glasses just as we enjoyed the last sip of each glass. The duck sausage was one of the appetizer specials, and it was special, indeed! I had the mahi-mahi from among the evening's special entrees, and it too was excellent, perfectly cooked and served over a layer of black beans and rice. We shared the baked Alaska, a dessert I might normally eschew as ho-hum, but I couldn't resist this version, made with espresso cheesecake ice cream. Everything was perfect, and as we passed that adorable canary on our way out, I couldn't help thinking, "I know why the fat bird sings..."

                1. re: DCDiner

                  Went with a party of 6 adults last Friday night based on local recommendation for a "special occasion." Seated within a few minutes of 7PM reservation. Very good service. All courses from appetizers to desserts were enjoyed. At 9:10 the owner, who had been making rounds of the customers all evening, came over and asked us if we had enjoyed our dinner and very subtly told us it was time for us to leave.

                  I know table turnover is important, it's a popular restaurant, and it was Friday night but I've never been treated like a car with a parking meter before. Keep this in mind especially over the busy summer tourist season.

              2. re: WellFedRed
                Allison Luckadoo

                Just a quick response to the new place opened by the chef at Ford's Colony. It is called the Blue Talon and is located at the Cheese Shop's old location. I haven't been there but have heard nothing but great things!

            2. s
              Susan Sherman

              Thanks to all for the great recommedations for Thanksgiving Dinner. We, a family of 3 boys + parents, will be traveling to Wiliamsburg this year for a Friday 11/28 Family Thanksgiving due to work and travel schedules. Do these restuarants also meet my families needs for a "not so formal" yet colonial Thanksgiving dinner?

              Raising a family of chowhounds - 14yrs, 11yrs & 9 yrs family!

              1. Give Kingsmill a call to check on their offerings for Thanksgiving. I believe all three restaurants are serving that day so you should find something pleasing to all.