On the to-do list this week: We’re exactly a week away from Thanksgiving. Do you know what you’re eating? Do you know where you’re eating? Do you know what you’re bringing? Plan it out. We have a guide to 15+ spots doing takeout Thanksgiving dinner (order soon! like, today) and a guide to the best places for pie in the Philly area (once again, order soon!).
On my personal to-do list: I’m going to Franklin Square to check out its always-beautiful winter light show and getting a cup of spiked hot chocolate while I’m at it.
❓What we’re wondering: What’s on your holiday bucket list? Email me and let me know — you might just see your response in this newsletter next week.
We’ve collected our best Philly tips all in one place here. Stay healthy, stay safe, and get vaccinated.
The best gift stores in Philly by Jillian Wilson
The best cookies in Philadelphia by Michelle Reese
2021 Philadelphia holiday events calendar by Amber Burns and Lauren McCutcheon
30+ community fridges in Philly you can use or help stock by Nick Vadala
Where to find Christmas tree farms and cut trees near Philadelphia by Jillian Wilson and Grace Dickinson
Where to find the best pies in Philadelphia by Kae Lani Palmisano
» Ask us a question through Curious Philly: Inquirer.com/askus
Fall weekend planner
Here is one highlight from our weekly events calendar:
🍺 Ancient Alcohol After Hours (History / virtual) Grab a beer and learn about ancient brewing at this virtual beer event. You’ll learn how to recreate some ancient beer recipes while listening to some of history’s best drinking stories. Stock up on the suggested beer pairings in advance and your guide will talk you through them all during your tour. If you’re feeling inspired after the tour, head to the museum in person to take a closer look at some of the pieces from the drinking stories you loved. ($15, Nov. 19, 6-8 p.m., penn.museum)
Order Thanksgiving dinner
It’s been another hard year. Give yourself a hug, take a breath, and step away from your computer (or phone). OK, now that you’re back, here’s how to make Thanksgiving easier than ever — order takeout dinner. We have a guide to the best spots to order a takeout turkey day meal, ranging from places making a classic Thanksgiving meal to spots where the dinner is met with unexpected pairings like lobster and pumpkin bisque. Here are some spots that are serving takeout Thanksgiving meals this holiday — remember, order soon!
Garces Trading Co. The Midtown Village storefront may not be back, but Garces Trading Co. is cooking again thanks to a range of heat-and-serve options available whenever you get a craving. For the upcoming holiday, the chefs offer a Thanksgiving menu complete with butter lettuce salad, rosemary rolls, a herb-roasted Hudson Valley turkey breast (plus gravy made with its drippings), cranberry-orange relish, challah bread stuffing, mashed potatoes, and green bean casserole.📍 Pickup at Volvér at 300 S. Broad St., 📞 267-284-7950, 📷 @garcestradingco, 🌐 garcestradingcompany.com, 💵 $45 per person (two-person minimum), 🗓 Order by Nov. 19
Forsythia. Chef Christopher Kearse’s modern French bistro in Old City has a slightly elevated takeaway option for folks looking for a more gourmet Thanksgiving meal. This year’s menu features turkey leg confit and smoked turkey wings, cornbread and turkey neck stuffing, Brussels sprouts, lacinato kale and fregola sarda (a type of pasta that’s similar to couscous) salad, lobster and pumpkin bisque, house-baked focaccia, and chai tea.📍 233 Chestnut St., 📞 215-644-9395, 📷 @forsythia_philly, 🌐 forsythiaphilly.com, 💵 $100 per person, 🗓 Order by Nov. 21
Sweet Lucy’s Smokehouse. Head to this Northeast spot for the makings of a true feast. The spread will be prepared cold, but don’t worry, Sweet Lucy’s will provide reheating instructions to make sure everything goes off without a hitch. You’ll get four pounds of hickory-smoked turkey breast, three quarts of any side dish on the menu, eight pieces of cornbread, a half-pint of cinnamon honey butter, plus gravy and mild barbecue sauce to feed between six and eight people.📍 7500 State Rd., 📞 215-333-9663, 📷 @Sweetlucys_bbq, 🌐 sweetlucys.com, 💵 $140 plus tax, 🗓 Order by Nov. 21
Cookies are good every single day of the year, but we are decidedly heading full force into cookie season. Cookie giving, cooking making, and cookie eating — isn’t that what the holidays are about? We have a new guide to the best places for cookies in Philly, ranging from places making classic Italian cookies to decadent dulce de leche shortbread. So, if you’re tasked with bringing dessert to Thanksgiving or just want to get a dozen cookies to eat on your own (no judgement, ever), here are some spots to pick up cookies and the cookies they’re known for.
Go to Cake Life Bake Shop for its honey shortbread cookies, which are flecked with pistachio, rose petals, raspberries, and violet sugar.
Visit Essen Bakery for classic black and white cookies.
Stop by Manakeesh Cafe, Bakery & Grill for its maamoul, a traditional Lebanese shortbread that’s stuffed with either dates, walnuts, or pistachios.
Make your way to Night Kitchen Bakery for a four-inch jumbo chocolate chip cookie.
Order from Flakley, which is known for its popular cornmeal lime zest cookie.
» READ MORE: Best cookies in Philly
Klip Collective, a local group that produces immersive art installations, is taking its work outside of Philly for a three-month-long exhibition at Grounds for Sculpture in Hamilton, NJ. Night Forms: dreamloop combines video, sound, and light to create a very cool (and very Instagrammable) scene throughout the nature and art scenes at the outdoor sculpture park.
It opens next Friday, Nov. 26, but tickets are on sale now.