Seeing family on Thanksgiving is great. All those cousins, uncles, and aunts coming together to chow down on turkey and trimmings can really put people in the holiday spirit.
But after a full day of feasting, it's time for a break. An afternoon that includes a group of preschoolers whose idea of a good time is running around the house and screaming would have anyone reaching for a drink. Or maybe friends just need a place to catch up over an adult beverage or two — and away from the listening ears of parents and gossipy siblings.
Thankfully, bar owners and bartenders understand their role in providing a little comfort and refuge. Even on a day most people aren't working, they're ready to help soothe frayed nerves and provide a forum for intimate conversations. Here's a few of our favorite options for grabbing a drink on Thanksgiving night.
Eight Row Flint
For those who didn't get their fill at the Thanksgiving table, Agricole Hospitality's whiskey bar in the Heights is here to help. While the truck that serves its regular menu will not be operating, the bar will serve a $15 dinner plate from sister concept Revival Market that includes turkey with gravy and cranberry sauce, stuffing, mac and cheese, dinner rolls, and pumpkin pie. Pair that with $5 pours of Wild Turkey bourbon or rye or any of the bar's other spirits, cocktails, or beers. Open 4 pm to 12 am. 1039 Yale St.
This casual pub near Washington Avenue will serve a Thanksgiving plate that includes turkey, ham, mashed potatoes, stuffing, and pumpkin pie for just $10. In addition, the bar will offer happy hour pricing all night, which means $1 off drafts and $2 off house cocktails and wines by-the-glass. Open 6 pm to 2 am. 5519 Allen St.
Might as Well Lounge and Boozenasium
The Spring Branch bar always has a come as you are vibe, and that's only emphasized on Thanksgiving. Patrons are invited to wear their "comfiest stretchy pant ensembles." Bartender Maggie Haun will serve her homemade turkey and dumplings for free (while it lasts). She's also created a special, Thanksgiving-themed cocktail called the Cranberry Sauced that mixes Calvados, salted lemon, cranberries, and apples. Open 6 pm to 2 am. 8518 Long Point Rd.
Public Services Wine & Whisky
It's a family affair at this downtown bar. Co-owner Justin Vann has invited his sister, Lei Low bartender Caitlin Vann, to serve a couple of tiki-inspired punches alongside some wine and cocktail specials. In addition, chef Justin Yu will have heritage turkey chili mac with mashed potatoes and gravy. Open 8 pm to 2 am. 202 Travis St.
Heights Bier Garten/Worcester's Annex
Turkey specials are great and all, but sometimes all a bar needs to provide is an first-rate selection of wine, beer, and spirits and a sprawling patio with lots of seating. These twin Heights properties feature 100 taps split between craft beer and wine, 55 house cocktails, and a back bar that features dozens and dozens of interesting whiskeys, tequilas, and mezcals. Open 6 pm to 2 am. 1433 N Shepherd Dr.