We all have our Thanksgiving traditions. Ours is lamb satays at the folks for lunch, then dinner at American Tavern Eatery & Drink for their $11-Thanksgiving turkey special with all the trimmings.
I can call it a tradition because we've been eating this turkey meal for the past four years or so, even as the restaurant changed formats last year from k'ya to become this more casual gastropub.
The turkey plate has become the only constant at this hotel restaurant. I wouldn't be surprised if in the days The Hotel Menage was a Holiday Inn, it, too, offered a similar special. And today it still remains one of the better deals outside of Black Friday: this year's meal price is the same as last year's.
If I were an economist and a better record keeper, I'd say the reason the price hasn't gone up has something to do with the consumer confidence index or interest rates. But if my recollection is correct, four years ago, in the thick of the recession, it was $9. And the slice of pumpkin pie was a buck, not two.
The most important thing here is that there are no surprises. There's turkey in slices, brined, probably carved from an actual bird, but more likely from some sort of loaf. There's gravy, a scoop of mashed potato, a dollop of jellied cranberry sauce, a slice of stuffing--all of it served warm and almost within seconds of ordering.
About the only change on this year's plate were the vegetables. Last year they served roasted root vegetables like sweet potato. This year, it was Brussels sprouts, asparagus, carrots, and zucchini--an improvement, in my opinion.
But is it life-changing? The best restaurant Thanksgiving dinner offering in OC? Probably not.
What it is is just enough food to say I ate turkey, at a price that's more than reasonable, at a place that has served it well every year I've had it.
My hope is that they keep doing it this well and at this price next year and the year after that. Our Thanksgiving tradition depends on it.
American Tavern Eatery and Drink
1221 South Harbor Blvd.
Anaheim, CA 92805
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