6 Shore restaurants that will be open on Thanksgiving

Sarah Griesemer
Asbury Park Press

Let's be honest: How many home cooks out there fantasize about letting someone else do the holiday cooking?

Especially this year, when those who enjoy spending time in the kitchen are burned out after preparing so many meals at home. If ever there was a year to pass on making the turkey and all the trimmings, this is it.

Indoor dining restrictions mean fewer restaurants will be open for Thanksgiving this year; as of late October, some owners had not yet decided if they would open Nov. 26. But these local restaurants will serve the big meal; act fast for reservations.

We will continue to update this listing; please let us know if your restaurant will be open for Thanksgiving Day dining by emailing sgriesemer@gannettnj.com.

100 Ocean, Long Branch: Holiday dinner on an oceanfront rooftop sure sounds nice, doesn't it? Find it at Wave Resort, which will offer a three-course Thanksgiving meal at High Crest, the hotel's 7,000-square-foot, indoor-outdoor rooftop space. Groups of up to 16 guests can dine on endive and pear salad, roasted turkey, short ribs, and pumpkin and apple pies ($45 per person). Downstairs, 100 Ocean restaurant will serve a traditional three-course dinner ($38 per person). 110 Ocean Ave.; 732-795-6618, 100-ocean.com.

High Crest is a rooftop dining space atop Wave Resort in Long Branch.

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Drifthouse by David Burke, Sea Bright: The oceanfront restaurant will serve a three-course prix fixe traditional Thanksgiving dinner from noon to 8 p.m. Dishes include autumn squash salad with burrata and prosciutto; roasted turkey with sausage stuffing; cranberry relish, bourbon gravy, green beans, sweet potatoes, and pumpkin créme brûlèe ($75, $24 for children 12 and younger). To-go dinners also are available. 1485 Ocean Ave.; 732-530-9760, drifthousedb.com.

Chef David Burke prepares a Thanksgiving turkey. His Sea Bright restaurant, Drifthouse by David Burke, will be open for Thanksgiving.

Engleside Inn, Beach Haven: This year-round restaurant on Long Beach Island will serve a traditional holiday dinner from 2 to 7 p.m. ($37.95, $18.95 for children 12 and younger). 30 Engleside Ave.; 609-492-1251, engleside.com.

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Francis', Surf City: Francis Pons and Debra Malota-Pons will open their French restaurant for Thanksgiving dinner service from 1 to 7 p.m. A traditional meal with all the trimmings will be served, as will filet mignon, veal tenderloin with Morel mushrooms, and a seafood dish. For dessert, there will be housemade Belgian chocolate cake, creme brûlée, and apple tartin, plus pie. 1419 Long Beach Blvd.; 609-361-0506, francissurfcity.com.

McLoone's Restaurants: Tim McLoone's restaurants often host buffets on holidays, but with that style of service off-limits during the pandemic, "we are doing family style," McLoone said. The Rum Runner in Sea Bright, McLoone's Pier House in Long Branch, The Iron Whale and The Robinson Ale House in Asbury Park, and The Robinson Ale House in Red Bank will be open from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m., as will CJ McLoone's in Tinton Falls, which last month opened for the first time since March. Menus include turkey breast with gravy, filet mignon, butternut squash soup, Brussels sprouts with roasted chestnuts, cranberry leek stuffing, creamed corn, pumpkin and pecan pies, among other dishes (from $14.95 per child to $44.95 per adult). mcloones.com.

The dining area at the newly reopened CJ McLoone's on Shrewsbury Avenue in Tinton Falls Thurday, October 30, 2020. They were closed from the start of the pandemic until last week. and will be open on Thanksgiving.

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Salt Creek Grille, Rumson: For Thanksgiving dinner with a view of the Navesink River, reserve a table at Salt Creek Grille, which will be open from noon to 7 p.m. A prix fixe menu includes hand-carved roasted turkey, butternut squash soup, apple rosemary stuffing, candied yams, and mashed potatoes with gravy, plus apple and pumpkin pies for dessert ($35, $14 for children 12 and younger). An a la carte menu and pre-ordered to-go dinners also will be available. 4 Bingham Ave.; 732-933-9272; saltcreekgrille.com/rumson.

Salt Creek Grille in Rumson will be open on Thanksgiving.

Sarah Griesemer joined the USA TODAY NETWORK New Jersey in 2003. Send restaurant tips to sgriesemer@gannettnj.com.