Restuarants Offering Turkey Takeout, Seeing A Boost This Week

As guest lists shrink, many are opting to let others do the cooking. Some bakeries, restaurants and specialty markets seeing a holiday rush.

trays full of sliced turkey

With Thanksgiving gatherings likely to be much smaller this year, people are looking for alternative ways to celebrate. That includes getting take-out for Thanksgiving.

Whether it’s a side dish or the entire feast, people are turning to outside caterers for Thanksgiving meals in increased numbers this year.

“We are working around the clock. The ovens are going 24 /7,” said David Booth, owner of Hall's Market in West Hartford.

Booth said the market normally sells 80-100 pre-cooked turkeys each Thanksgiving. This year, they’ve sold 220.

“It’s overwhelming,” said Booth. “We had to cut off our orders which I never thought we would do.”

According to Booth, Hall’s has run out of oven space -- something they’ve also needed for the 400 pies they’ve made. With more people leaving the cooking to them, they say it’s no comparison to normal years.

 “On the catering side it’s between double and triple,” added Booth.

Among those who’ve decided on turkey takeout is Michelle Unal and her family.

“We’re trying to make the food really stand out this year so that the people who can come are really able to enjoy themselves,” she said.

Unal says catering the holiday will keep it special and with only 5 people; less wasteful.

“The smaller the amount of people the less it cost to get it catered. It just makes more sense to get it catered,” said Unal.

It’s not just Hall’s Market seeing a spike. Bear’s BBQ told NBC Connecticut, between today and Thursday they have 800 Turkeys scheduled to be picked up. They say that’s about double what they sold last year.

The Rooster Company in Newington usually has a full dining room for Thanksgiving -- upwards of 100 reservations. That will not be the case this year, but they are offering family-style turkey dinners for four and they’ve already sold out.

“I would say all the service we would do in-house is now take out,” said owner, Jon Martin.

The Hartford Baking Company says the orders they’re seeing are smaller but more frequent than usual. They’re selling plenty of pies and breads but say their pastry sales are down. The reason for that is simple, says Barbara Foldbary.

“Not as many people at the dinner table.”

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