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Thanksgiving - Moderate but good restaurant open on Thanksgiving

lalred Oct 5, 2009 07:25 PM

Does anyone know of a moderately priced restaurant that I could take my out of town family to for Thanksgiving lunch/dinner. No more than $20. each person? Buffet or Sit-down. Hopefully in the vicinity of Plano, but not necessarily. Thanks.

  1. c
    CocoaNut Nov 18, 2010 09:02 AM

    Since I was very curt last year with my retort on Dunston's Thanksgiving buffet, here is a more forthright assessment. The food was served on a buffet in a most unappealing fashion. Don't recall details a year later, but it was a very sloppy presentation. I remember thinking it reminded me of an office pot-luck after the bulk of people had come through. The dining area is dimly lit which lends to an overall dingy feel. The "turkey" was that pre-formed, oval shaped piece of pale, white meat - no color, no appetizing allure. In general, all of the mains and sides were extremely bland. This might be because it seemed that 90% or more of diners were in family groups that included very senior family members - I do not say that to be factual, not offensive. I would imagine in most cases, there was a longstanding history of annual Thanksgiving, family dinners at Dunston's. This is not a place I would recommend nor would I return there even with my 80+ yo parents.

    The price is right, but be prepared for the offerings.

    1. m
      mybigorange Nov 18, 2010 04:38 AM

      Potager in Arlington is doing an organic, local Thanksgiving lunch/dinner. Price is $25 for adults and $12.50 for kids though. Considering you are getting heritage turkey and ham raised by real farmers on local ranches and vegetables and fruit from our local farms, it can't be beat.

      Potager Cafe
      315 S Mesquite St, Arlington, TX 76010

      1 Reply
      1. re: mybigorange
        twinwillow Nov 18, 2010 07:44 AM

        Although I respect Potager for their choice of cooking locally sourced organic foods, I find the quirky "hodge-podge" of tables and chairs and the room in general to be quite off putting and uncomfortable. But, the food is good.

        Potager Cafe
        315 S Mesquite St, Arlington, TX 76010

      2. c
        CocoaNut Nov 5, 2009 06:03 AM

        Has anyone actually eaten at Dunston's for Thanksgiving and if so, would you go back a second year? I was wondering if the turkey is a whole turkey carved to order or the "pressed" variety arranged on a tray for buffet service.

        4 Replies
        1. re: CocoaNut
          CocoaNut Nov 26, 2009 12:12 PM

          I would not recommend Dunston's to ANYBODY --- EVER --- for ANY amount of money. NEVER.

          1. re: CocoaNut
            DallasDude Nov 27, 2009 08:29 AM

            Ah, sad to hear. I met the matron of the Duntson family last night while having cocktails at my favorite pub (she was the former owner of the pub in fact) , and she was extremely sweet. They said they were very crowded all day and brought in extra family members so they could all be together for the holiday.

            Having said that, I am positive that I would not go to Dunston's for Thanksgiving. My family went to Eden, which was very nice. I enjoyed speaking with the chef/ owner who was more than cordial and the staff was especially wonderful. Plus it is BYOB with a tiny corkage. If I had my way, we would have gone to Old Warsaw, they always have a wonderful prix fixe menu for every holiday and is a great departure from the humdrum turkey feast, which I am not a fan of.

            1. re: DallasDude
              CocoaNut Nov 27, 2009 12:32 PM

              Yeah..... fortunate for me, I didn't have high expectations so had a backup plan with a turkey breast brining and waiting to be grill roasted upon my return. By 5:00, we were enjoying a very good Thanksgiving meal w/all the fixin's. Sometimes though, you just have to cave in to a bit of restaurant nostalgia.

              (I did notice all the cars at Eden)

              1. re: DallasDude
                twinwillow Nov 18, 2010 07:36 AM

                A huge second to Eden over Dunstan's on Lovers Lane.
                I used to lunch at Dunstan's often until one day, I ordered (as it happened to be) the turkey plate for lunch. I was served one and a HALF slices if turkey. What? Two slices would ruined their bottom line? I'd have rather been served only ONE slice for that matter!

          2. kuidaore Oct 28, 2009 01:17 PM

            We went to Capriccio for the Thanksgiving brunch last year.

            They serve turkey, stuffing, veggies and a few non-Thanksgiving dishes for less than $20. Their buffet is very small, but adequate. My companion's mother loved their stuffing and asked for the recipe. I love their made-to-order omelet. We'll probably go back this year.

            We've had Thanksgiving and Christmas brunches at local hotels, but none of them impressed us esp. for the price they charge.

            2 Replies
            1. re: kuidaore
              CocoaNut Nov 5, 2009 06:00 AM

              Here is Capriccio's T'giving day menu.


              1. re: CocoaNut
                kuidaore Nov 26, 2009 02:08 PM

                Their Thanksgiving dishes were better (except for the stuffing) this year, but unfortunately, they have a new chef and their omelet isn't good anymore. According to the owner, they had only 30 people last year, but 300 people this year!

            2. Scagnetti Oct 6, 2009 08:21 AM

              Dunston's on Lovers Lane in Dallas always has a resonably priced Thanksgiving buffet.

              Like irodguy mentioned, $20 is low for a holiday buffet.

              1 Reply
              1. re: Scagnetti
                robingd Oct 23, 2009 08:32 PM

                A coworker of mine recommended Dunston's too. I just called them and she said they will be open from 11-3 T-Giving day, and the buffet will include turkey, ham, brisket, fish, stuffing, mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, vegetables, fresh bread, and a dessert table. She may have mentioned other stuff, there was so much she mentioned that I don't know if I got it all. And get this..... the price is $18.95 per adult, she said it was lower for kids, but I didn't listen to the price since we will have no kids on board.

              2. irodguy Oct 6, 2009 08:15 AM

                For that price point you might be better off ordering a dinner from Central. You could put together a pretty nice spread for $20 a person. Most of the buffets are in the $60 to $80 range.

                1. v
                  vstock Oct 6, 2009 07:12 AM

                  My recommendation is once you decide where you might go, that you call ahead to confirm the menu. Three years ago, we made reservations at Silver Fox, only to find out that there menu was limited to 3 choices, not one being a "steak". Yes, they served beef, but not a steak and only mashed potatoes and corn as sides. No flexibility. It was a disappointing day.

                  I have heard that Maggiano's typically is open on Thanksgiving, but I am not sure if you are looking for that type of restaurant or something more original.

                  Good Luck!

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: vstock
                    robingd Oct 22, 2009 06:21 PM

                    I called Maggiano's and they said they will be serving Thanksgiving-type meals during the season, but will not be open Thanksgiving Day.

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