For the Non-Turkey Enthusiast: Coffee, Ramen + What Else Is Open on Thursday
Tsukemen at Tsujita
There are a number of things you can do on Thursday. You can go whole hog -- or whole turkey, as it were -- and help prepare a huge meal for your friends and family. You can forego the DIY preparations and either get a prepared bird (Chinese-style or otherwise) or have a Thanksgiving feast at a restaurant.
Or, maybe for any number of reasons (e.g., you dislike turkey, you don't believe in Thanksgiving, you generally are indifferent to most holidays, etc.), you will spend Thursday not cooking or eating turkey, but, rather, taking the day off and not doing a whole lot more than, say, watching football and/or The Twilight Zone marathon. In which case it'd be nice to know where you can go out for a cup of coffee and a bowl of ramen. Fortunately, there will be places open on Thursday where you can get all of the above, and then some.
Waffle and coffee at Go Ge Em Tiger
Because whether you're fussing over a turkey or not, lords know you need coffee on Thursday. Luckily, there are several coffee shops that will be serving great brews: In the San Gabriel Valley, specialty coffee shop De Cafe Baristas in the Atlantic Times Square Plaza will be open until about 3 p.m. In Pasadena, Copa Vida will be open from from 7 a.m. to noon.
Closer to Los Angeles proper, Coffee Commissary's Burbank and Fairfax locations will both be open from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. And on Larchmont Boulevard, Go Get Em Tiger will be open from 8 a.m. to about noon and will have a special menu of drinks you don't see very often on specialty coffee shop menus: Peppermint mochas, caramel brûlée lattes, eggnog lattes, and the like. Starbucks really shouldn't have all the fun.
Wine at DomaineLA
... And lords know you probably also could use a little alcohol on Thursday, no matter what you're doing. Thus: A number of wine shops will be open in the morning, including DomaineLA (open from 10:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.); Silverlake Wine (open from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.); and, in Los Feliz, Lou Wine & Provisions (open from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.). While you're at Lou's, you may as well drop into Sqirl, which is next door and serving breakfast Thursday morning from 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
XLB at Mama's Lu Dumpling House
For lunch and dinner:
For lunch and dinner, you have quite a few options. Like Korean BBQ: Cooking up kalbi on a tabletop grill with a group of friends similarly unencumbered by the holiday sounds like a pretty great way to spend the day. There's a good chance that your favorite Korean BBQ spot will be open; try, for example, Park's BBQ or Genwa.
There is also ramen. Very good ramen. Tsujita will keep its regular hours during the holiday, meaning you probably won't have to wait very long in line to have a bowl of their ramen or terrific tsukemen.
Last but definitely not least, head to the San Gabriel Valley, where you'll find all sorts of restaurants open during Thanksgiving. This is an especially good idea if you're on the Westside and think the SGV is about as far away as Montana; make the effort, and you'll see that, at least on a major holiday when traffic will be light, going on the 10 east past the 405 really is neither that far nor that scary.
If you need a general destination because it makes you nervous to go to a restaurant without first fully vetting it on Yelp, tell Siri to take you to lunch at Golden Deli, or join the a crowd at a dim sum restaurant like Sea Harbour. Or you can go to Mama's Lu Dumpling House. The dumpling specialist will be open until 5 p.m. Order the soup dumplings and a pan-fried pancake. Maybe take another order of each to go. Hungry? You'll be there in no time at all.
Get the Squid Ink'd Newsletter
Sign up for our weekly food newsletter, which features top local food news and events, plus interviews with chefs and restaurant owners, dining tips and a link to our print review.