Whether you’re spending Thanksgiving with family or on your own, sometimes it’s best to let someone else do the cooking.
And the good news is, there are plenty of choices for eating out on the holiday.
Columbo’s Italian restaurant inside the Doubletree Hotel on Bush River Road has been offering its Thanksgiving feast for years, according to Doubletree director of sales and marketing Steve Williams. In fact, the restaurant’s Thanksgiving buffet – which accommodates 400 diners at $34 per adult – is so popular it books out well in advance of the holiday.
“It’s a tradition for some families,” Williams said. “They’ve been doing it for years and they keep coming back.”
Here’s a sampling of places you can get your turkey fix this year.
Yesterday’s Restaurant and Tavern
Karen Martin knows that Yesterday’s has been open on Thanksgiving Day for at least 26 years. That’s how long she has been manager at the Five Points bar and eatery. Yesterday’s operates with a volunteer staff on Thanksgiving but has no problem cooking and serving that day, Martin said. Diners who come in for dinner can order from the restaurant’s late-night menu featuring burgers and wings and also will have the extra option of turkey and dressing.
Opening at 5 p.m. at 2030 Devine St., Columbia. (803) 799-0196
Cowboy’s Brazilian Steakhouse
Diners who want a Thanksgiving feast comprised of an unlimited selection of meat can head to Cowboy’s, where the full “Dinner Rodizio” and salad bar will be served for the regular price of $34 per person. Dinner Rodizio features 16 cuts of beef, chicken, pork and lamb, along with ham and turkey for Thanksgiving. The buffet also will include traditional Thanksgiving sides such as sweet potato casserole and cornbread stuffing.
Open 11:30 a.m.-3 p.m. at 1508 Main St., Columbia. (803) 728-0887
Carolina Ale House
Carolina Ale House off Harbison Boulevard will be offering a limited version of its regular menu, as well as a traditional Thanksgiving menu option of turkey and stuffing, sweet potato casserole, candied yams, carrots, green beans and mac and cheese for $10.99. According to general manager Bob Stolberg, the restaurant served more than 500 in those limited hours last year.
Open 4 p.m. to midnight at 227 Columbiana Drive, Columbia. (803) 227 Columbiana Drive, Columbia. The Ale House location in the Vista will not be open Thanksgiving Day.
Ruth’s Chris Steak House
In addition to its regular steak-stocked menu, Ruth’s Chris will offer a three-course Thanksgiving feast featuring a starter of a salad or gumbo, a main course of turkey breast with dressing and gravy, cranberry relish, sweet potato casserole and creamed spinach and a pumpkin cheesecake with vanilla ice cream for dessert. The cost is $39.95 per person and getting in without a reservation is not likely, according to the staff.
Open 11 a.m.-10 p.m. at Hilton Columbia Center Hotel, 924-A Senate St., Columbia. (803) 212-6666.
Ariana’s Greek Restaurant
Folks looking for a complete diversion from the traditional Thanksgiving foods can head to Ariana’s for the restaurant’s Greek menu including Qubeli Palaw, a Mediterranean dish of lamb topped with carrots, raisins and almonds; Qurma Chalaw, a stew with chicken or lamb; and, of course, gyro platters and spanakopita, spinach, feta and herbs layered with filo dough and oven-baked.
Open at 4:30 p.m. at 1720 Sunset Blvd., West Columbia. (803) 796-4430.
Lizard’s Thicket already is known for serving home cookin’ year round, but the restaurants kick it up a notch for Thanksgiving, offering turkey and dressing from Thursday through Sunday. Gallons of sweet tea and pans of vegetables can be ordered a few hours before pickup for those looking for home cooking without cooking at home.
Open 6 a.m.-9 p.m. at all 15 Columbia area locations.
Old Mill Brewpub
Old Mill Brewpub is back in business following the dam break at Old Mill Pond, and the staff is ready for its annual Thanksgiving business. In addition to the main menu selections that include shrimp and grits and blackened chicken Alfredo, Old Mill also will offer a full turkey dinner with all the fixings.
Open 11 a.m.-4 p.m. at 711 E. Main St., Lexington. (803) 785-2337
British Bulldog Pub
Another option away from the traditional, the pub will offer its regular menu of burgers, wings, fish and chips, Reubens and roast beef sandwiches.
Open at 3 p.m. at 1220 Bower Parkway, Columbia. (803) 227-8918
Among chain restaurants, all area locations of the following are scheduled to be open Thanksgiving Day: Waffle House, Ruby Tuesday, IHOP, Denny’s, Fatz Cafe, Ryan’s.