rifling through our inbox handy helpful Turkey Day guide, we focus on places that would be good to take the kids, or the whole family including Great Uncle Sid, who hasn't liked a meal he's eaten out since 1958. In other words, places that combine that old-fashioned let's-go-downtown-for-the-holidays magic with something that will keep the kids entertained and everybody happily fed.
• Eat Thanksgiving in a rich family’s mansion at Lawry’s The Prime Rib, where the traditional turkey and, duh, prime rib is done up on silver carts and carved tableside. It starts at $30 and includes lots of old school classics like shrimp cocktail. T-day, 11:30 to 8 p.m.
• Like Lawry’s, The Drake is another very old school experience everyone should have at least once during the holidays— old school even if their buffet does boast a an Asian station and sushi/sashimi bar.
• One phrase may seal the deal for deca Restaurant + Bar’s deluxe T-day brunch (in the Ritz-Carlton): “kids activity room.” You dine in one civilized room with a jazz trio, rugrats (18 months and up) have their own buffet plus licensed babysitters, games and crafts.
• You never ate at Avenues... but at least you can have thanksgiving in the room where it used to be at The Peninsula Chicago. Three seatings for brunch (running until 6:30 p.m.), plus a separate kids’ lounge with activities, games, movies and a magician; $135 per adult, $38 per child.
• Another last chance: Patrick Sheerin’s last Thanksgiving in The Signature Room at the 95th before he and his brother start The Trenchermen. Starters and sweets are served buffet style, while main courses are served at the table. The legendary view and the spread are $65 for adults, $25 for kids 4-12, free for 3 and under.