Stuffing in all the fun

How to Make the Most of This Thanksgiving Break in Boston

by Kaylee Chin

With the leaves falling and the sun setting at 4 p.m., the world seems to be in a bit of a slump at the moment. Holidays are approaching and a yearn for family and comfort are at an all-time high. Thanksgiving break is this week and students’ decisions will play a large role in their experience for the remainder of the fall semester and the following spring semester.

Boston University’s Dining Services recognizes how eager most students are for a homecooked meal. Dining Services describe the special holiday menu when stating, “Your on-campus culinarians have come together to provide exceptional, flavorful, and traditional tastes for the campus community. From hand-carved turkey breast to sweet baked goods to oven-roasted vegan delights, BU Dining invites you to take advantage of your meal plan and enjoy the delicious spread.”

Marciano Commons and West Campus Dining Hall are serving special holiday meals for brunch (10 a.m.–3 p.m.) and for dinner (5 p.m.–8 p.m.). Here, you can eat all of the Thanksgiving classics like turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes and cranberry sauce. Finish your meal off with desserts like pumpkin pie, apple cranberry crisps, vegan chai latte cake and vegan pumpkin bread. Try not to think about the incoming food coma, though.

If you wish to go out for Thanksgiving, there are restaurants opne in Boston and they are eager to serve you. Each of these restaurants is open for seating, delivery and take-out.

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Raising Cane’s

This university classic is known for its amazing chicken. Combo meals range from $8–$12. Don’t forget to get some Texas toast and coleslaw. Available for pick-up and delivery. https://www.grubhub.com/food/raising_canes

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OAK Long Bar & Kitchen

Sit by OAK’s new heat lamps on the patio by Copley Square, or relax indoors by warm candlelight. Alongside their normal menu, they are offering Thanksgiving specials like bacon wrapped turkey breast, squash and sprouts and pomme purée. This restaurant is open from 11:30 a.m.–10 p.m. and the maximum table size is six people. Schedule a reservation, pick-up or delivery here: https://www.opentable.com/r/oak-long-bar-and-kitchen-boston?ref=17848&refreshed=true.

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The Beehive

Next to the Boston Center for the Arts in Boston’s South End, this restaurant is a hub for creativity and great food. Dine in against abstract paintings and unique textiles. Their Thanksgiving menu includes a three-course prix fixe menu including choices like a traditional roast turkey with sage and rosemary gravy, lobster, pumpkin bisque and slow roasted brisket. Their Thanksgiving special is a $76 three-course meal; $25 for children under 10 years old. Schedule a reservation, pick-up or delivery here: https://www.grubhub.com/restaurant/the-beehive-541-tremont-st-boston/2353687.

Harvest

Enjoy a Contemporary American meal at this lovely restaurant in Harvard Square. Their Thanksgiving menu includes a three-course prix fixe menu with a twist on classics including turkey breast, squash soup, venison-pork terrine, swiss chard ricotta ravioli, Faroe island salmon and a variety of delicious desserts. This restaurant has a sophisticated twist on New England dining with a rich seafood and wine menu. The dress code is business casual.

Harvest is open from 11:00 a.m.–9 p.m. and the maximum table size is six people. Their three-course meal option is $78, with an optional wine pairing for $32. Schedule a reservation, pick-up or delivery here: https://www.opentable.com/r/harvest-cambridge?ref=17848&refreshed=true.

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Grill 23 & Bar

Enjoy a high-quality meal and celebrate this holiday alongside business dinners in Back Bay. This restaurant’s classic architecture features gorgeous high ceilings and marble columns. Their Thanksgiving menu is a three-course prix fixe menu featuring an appetizer, Misty Knoll Farms turkey and dessert. If you choose not to order the special holiday meal, their wonderful menu featuring award winning wines and steaks is also available. This restaurant is open from 5:30 p.m.–9 p.m. Schedule a reservation or takeout through https://www.opentable.com/restref/client/?restref=3325&lang=en&corrid=26b4fb77-c3f0-4580-96bc-a80eb5794a69 or by calling (617) 542-2255.

“I feel as though people have become desensitized to the pandemic today, but I don’t think traveling and returning to campus is a safe option this year,” Kayla Saldana (CAS ’24) said when asked about students’ plans to travel home for Thanksgiving. “Many will be exposing themselves to COVID-19 either through trains, buses, or flights. It’s selfish to expose the people you love to this virus. Even if you are not at risk, someone down the line may be.”

Kayla offered another option for how to spend your time during the break. “It’s safer to stay on campus and have a small (COVID-compliant) Friendsgiving with the people closest to you.”

There has been a severe increase in COVID-19 cases on Boston University’s campus and the greater Boston area. There is a growing concern for campus closure and the possibility that through traveling and exposure, many students will be returning to campus and test positive.

“Anyone already on campus should remain here at least until the winter break,” Lauren Gotard (CAS ’24) said. “After all, returning home could pose a serious threat to our family, friends, neighbors, etc. As a freshman, I more than understand the temptation to return home and recharge, to give our dogs or cats a well-deserved pet. But because we made the decision to come to campus, we need to honor the choice we made back in August and stay for as long as possible.”

Gotard is choosing to remain on campus until winter break. She made this decision due to safety reasons and not wishing to endanger her family or neighborhood in her hometown.

Eliana Mugar (CAS ’23) suggested those who travel home for Thanksgiving should stay at home for the duration of the semester.

“If students have the capability to stay on campus, I think they should,” said Mugar. “If students are traveling home, I think they should stay at home until the end of the semester. Traveling at this time is a bit risky with the growing cases of COVID. Personally, I'm staying on campus because it's not worth taking a flight back home to the West Coast where cases aren't doing too well.”

Whether you travel to see family, enjoy a cozy Friendsgiving or celebrate by yourself, there are many restaurants in the Boston area working hard to make this holiday season feel as normal as possible.