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Nov 12, 2011 01:47 AM

Thanksgiving, without the Thanksgiving meal/celebration?

I'm flying in to Boston on Thanksgiving, for a 4 day trip with my girlfriend. We're both from the UK, and Thanksgiving is a foreign concept to us... the next, big, slap-up Turkey meal will likely be Xmas!

We're staying downtown and are looking for a restaurant that doesn't require a) reservations and b) doesn't necessarily serve a fixed price 15 course meal.

No fast food outlets... still looking for a nice meal. I'm thinking Chinatown? Any particular suggestions?

We like Asian, spicy foods... or even a nice seafood place that does really good crab.

Thanks in advance!

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  1. I've done thanksgiving in other city's Chinatowns on several occasions.

    Maybe QHotpot?

    5 Replies
    1. re: C. Hamster

      The problem is that Thanksgiving is such a universally observed feast in the US (unlike Christmas), it is often the one day of the year that many Asian food places close, for lack of business. So always call to find out Thanksgiving hours in advance.

      1. re: Karl S

        This is excellent advice. Also,brucelover, the easiest way for you to see if places are open for thanksgiving, and then check further re menu options, is to go to and proceed as if you're making a reservation. once you've found some spots that appeal, then click on their web links and there should be Thanksgiving meal info on their sites.

        P.F.Changs is a nicer Chinese place, centrally located but not in Chinatown. It's a chain and draws alot of tourists but i think i have read positive CH reviews of it before.

        Also, in case this might be helpful:

        Guide to Boston by Areas and Restaurants:

        Also, some extra Boston food profile info for you:

        shopping for Boston food souvenirs:

        1. re: opinionatedchef

          PF Chang's is typical chain restaurant crap, imho.

          1. re: opinionatedchef

            uh oh, looks like i made a big mistake,brucelover. plse disregard that rec for PFChangs.
            mea maxima culpa.

            1. re: opinionatedchef

              Thanks for your input and links OC, I'll check out the links!

      2. Some restaurants (and not by any means are most open on the day itself) serve their regular a la carte menu as well as the expensive prix fixe. Check out, click on thanksgiving, and you'll see see of them serve regular a la carte. By the way, the prix fixe(s) are usually only 4 courses and they are very expensive. Others will as well that are not listed, this is primarily a showcase for the expensive fixed priced ones.....

        1 Reply
        1. re: Madrid

          I agree with this. Many restaurants nationwide realize that not everyone is a turkey fan. Even if they do have a priced-fix meal that day, I've never seen a menu devoted to turkey only. There will also be meat & seafood offerings. However, you might not be able to avoid the reservation thing.

        2. Definitely don't go to P.F. Chang's!!! Yikes. opinionatedchef, are you confusing it with Myers and Chang? Myers + Chang is closed on Thanksgiving.

          I'm sure that some of the places in Chinatown will be open....Q Hotpot would be nice if it's open, so worth giving them a call. A lot of places won't be on Opentable though...

          10 Replies
          1. re: Dave MP

            I actually ended up with a reservation at Atlantic Fish (crab - my other preferred option :-)) who are serving the full menu.

            Just to veer this a bit off topic, any good experiences there?

            1. re: springsteenlover

              brucelove, others may have comments on Atl.Fish, but did you call to see if Island Creek Oyster Bar or Neptune was open and serving their regular menu? They are, hands down, the most raved seafood places on this board. just sayin'.

              Island Creek Oyster Bar
              500 Commonwealth Ave, Boston, MA 02215

              1. re: opinionatedchef

                Thanks v. much for the suggestion. Didn't check - basically just went to OpenTable and booked the closest seafood place I could find with great reviews and availability, then snagged a table. Will check on Island Creek - cancel easily cancel the other one if so. Thanks for the tip!

                  1. re: springsteenlover

                    not wanting to be pushy, ony helpful>> calling is your best bet because a restnt always has more tables than show on open table. p.s. just called, and isl crk is closed thanksgiv. But keep that in mind about Open Table for other spots.

                    1. re: opinionatedchef

                      Thanks so much for looking into this. Will definitely bear in mind that OpenTables doesn't show the full availability. You've been very helpful, thanks to everyone for posting,

                      1. re: springsteenlover

                        most of chinatown's restaurants are not on open table. it's an easy area to explore with a number of great restaurants and you can find several threads with recommendations. Atlantic Fish is ok but it is also part of a chain and if you don't mind that "corporate" vibe, the new Legal's on the wharf is far superior. You can make reservations for it as well. Enjoy your stay.

                          1. re: springsteenlover

                            no, it's Legal's harborside - it has three types of service: first floor is oyster bar, general fish place, second floor is gourmet/upscale, third floor is bar with small plates, all with nice views. you can go on line and check the menus and some other recent posts about the quality.