Thanksgiving and the few weeks that precede it, represent the beginning of “the holiday season.” Minus a few grinches here and there, everyone is generally in a good mood and that makes for some great memories in the Queen City. Last week on Wine Night at The Corner Pub, my girlfriends and I ended up having a cry session. What started out as a conversation about our partners and The 5 Love Languages turned into a conversation about why we loved one another and what each friendship meant to us. It was therapy with a tinge of wine and that’s what the spirit of thanks can do to you.
Friendsgiving. Heard of it? Thanksgiving celebrated with your friends, usually held before the holiday or in place of time spent with family. It’s the perfect time of year for you to gather all of your closest friends for a potluck, dinner or drinks. After all, even if you leave with all the leftovers in the world, family time can get a bit overwhelming. Enjoy Thanksgiving without the pressures of conversations about grandkids, professional growth or getting your shit together by coordinating Friendsgiving in the Q.C. Below are a few suggestions on how to celebrate locally:
— It’s cheap, it’s fun, it’s personal. Everyone can bring a dish, or alcoholic beverage, to a designated home, gather around the dinner table with a few games and watch the fun unfold. If you’re really feeling adventurous, your Friendsgiving potluck can be the designated pregame for the night. Pro tips: The host should prepare the main dish and have everyone else bring sides and drinks. It makes for a stress-free night.
— It’s Southern-inspired cuisine aka soul food. Isn’t that what everyone is searching for during Thanksgiving? This beautiful Uptown restaurant where the rustic meets the industrial, is perfect for getting all of your friends in one space. Pro tips: Try the meatloaf it was to die for. Call and ask about reserving the private space at the front.
— It’s named after a traditional Brazilian drink that represents hospitality and friendship. Um, in the spirit of Friendsgiving, how perfect is that? Combine amazing service with all-you-can-eat meat and sumptuous sides and you have a Thanksgiving meal made in Heaven. Pro tips: As with any all-you-can-eat scenario, prepare to reach deep in your pockets. Don’t eat all day and get your money’s worth.
The Workman’s Friend
— This Irish pub and restaurant has quickly gained popularity in Plaza Midwood. Whether you’re searching for good food or great drinks — or hot Irishmen — you’ll find it all at The Workman’s Friend. An intimate atmosphere highlighted by a spacious outdoor beer garden makes for a great space for you and your friends to enjoy. Pro tips: They don’t have a lot of space for large groups, so call ahead. The house ground brisket sliders with the tiniest quail egg and “Not Your Mama’s” pork and beans are my favorites.
The Roasting Company
— My boyfriend is obsessed with this place. The first time we went, I assumed it was another soul food restaurant. I was wrong. This restaurant features Costa Rican rotisserie chicken. The menu does, however, have quite a few sides that are Southern staples, so I wasn’t entirely wrong. Nevertheless, once I actually gave it a try, I wasn’t disappointed. Pro tips: The parking lot gets packed pretty quick so Uber or find a spot along the street. You can make reservations, so do it. Full bar, need I say more? Consider belting out a few karaoke tunes at Jeff’s Bucket Shop next door after dinner.
It’s never too late for celebrating friends. If you’ve already secured Friendsgiving in the Q.C. use this list to organize for Christmas because it’ll be here before you know it. Dirty Santa anyone?