It's all about planning ahead when it comes to great holiday eats, so we've created a list of shopping spots (for awesome dining-out Thanks options, see left) that can help you attain Thanksgiving dinner-table domination.
Don't come crying to us when you're stuck in fluorescent-lit shopping-cart gridlock at your local vagina-hating Albertson's—possibly contracting avian flu—come Nov. 24.
Even though it's located way the hell out near gritty Northeast 82nd Avenue, Gartner's Country Meats (7450 NE Killingsworth St., 252-7801) still hawks somewhere between 500 and 600 Northwest Natural turkeys each year. Order early, the deadline for these $1.39 per pounders is Tuesday, Nov. 22. For closer-in poultry action, swing by City Market (735 NW 21st Ave., 221-3012) and you order your Mary's Free-Range Heritage Turkeys ($4.95 per pound, $3.50 per pound for organic birds) Viande meats. For another way to give thanks, check out Asian megamart Uwajimaya (10500 SW Beaverton-Hillsdale Highway, Beaverton, 643-4512), which carries whole roasted ducks ($12.99 each) in its deli case.
Elephants Delicatessen (115 NW 22nd Ave., 299-6304, and other locations) is ground zero for deli classics, from sliced turkey breast, cherry carrot slaw to moist stuffing (place prepaid orders by 3 pm Monday, Nov. 21). Wait at the new Northwest location's big, sexy bar and sip a cocktail while the staff packs up your feast.The Portland Farmers Market (South Park Blocks between Montgomery and Harrison streets) is the place for raw cooking materials, from local produce to homemade chutneys, dressings and relishes. Its Thanksgiving blowout takes place 8 am-2:30 pm Saturday, Nov. 19.
Load up on must-have pies (pumpkin, apple and pecan, $18-$22) or, Guinness stout gingerbread soaked in ginger syrup ($18), from Northeast Portland's decadent Criollo Bakery (4727 NE Fremont St., 335-9331). The classic Hawthorne Boulevard sweets shop JaCiva's (4733 SE Hawthorne Blvd., 234-8115) crafts the ultimate winged wonders: four-pound chocolate turkeys. No shit. JaCiva's got 'em—stuffed with jelly beans, caramels, trinkets, truffles and crack. OK, not the last one—but chocolate turkeys are just as addictive.
FULL MEAL FAKERY
Fool your guests into thinkin' you're a Cordon Bleu grad with Whole Foods Market (1210 NW Couch St., 525-4343) classic made-to-order dinners (Diestel roasted turkey, roasted garlic mashed potatoes—you get the picture). The market's surprisingly delish vegan dinners feature wheat-gluten field roast as well as forbidden black rice salad, saffron poached pears and more. Order half dinners ($54.99, serves two to four) or full dinners ($99.99, six to eight) until Monday, Nov. 21.