Red Rose

Rosebuds Blog

Thanksgiving at The Rose Hotel, and food options galore

November 14, 2013
Thanksgiving Dinner

It’s a well-known fact that turkey contains L-tryptophan, an essential amino acid with a documented sleep inducing effect.

That is why our utmost desire after stuffing ourselves with stuffed turkey on Thanksgiving Day is to nap. That is why the three most important considerations on the Thanksgiving holiday are to:

  1. Be surrounded by family and friends
  2. Have a fabulously large, traditional and delicious meal
  3. Have a luxurious place to lay our head and nap after all the food and merriment

It is the third of those considerations that The Rose Hotel will specialize in this Thanksgiving Day, Nov. 28. It is our Family Visit Special and, with a minimum two-night stay, you get:

  • Two connecting rooms, each with king bed (perfect for a long, plush nap) and full bath
  • An extensive continental breakfast, as a prelude to your Thanksgiving feast
  • Guest pass to our neighboring full-service athletic club, so you and yours can go right to work on all those calories that go to waist

The full package costs $399 per night (plus the tax collector’s 8 percent levy).

So we invite you to come to The Rose to celebrate, and sleep, and be pampered. The number to call is 925-846-8802.

And if you’re looking to do some Major League holiday shopping on Black Friday, the Livermore Premium Outlets and Stoneridge Mall are very close by.

Almost 400 years after the first repast between Pilgrims and Native Americans, we could no longer ignore the grand tradition that is Thanksgiving, nor the turkey’s sleep-inducing effect. So we have intervened — late, yes, but with a fair degree of panache.

And, yes, that above number is only a minor exaggeration. Thanksgiving was given birth nearly 400 years ago, or 392 years to be exact. As we learned in school and soon forgot, the first Thanksgiving was celebrated in 1621 at the behest of Plymouth Colony Gov. William Bradford, and Native Americans were invited guests of honor. Thanksgiving became an official U.S. holiday Oct. 3, 1863 by proclamation of President Abraham Lincoln, who declared the last Thursday in November as Thanksgiving Day.

By 1916, Thanksgiving was referred to in writings as Turkey Day, due to the popularity of the bird at the traditional feast. Thanksgiving and turkey are absolutely inseparable. And turkey and sleepiness have also become inseparable.

But why turkey at all?

That requires yet another brief history lesson. The wild turkey is native to North America and was a staple in the Native American diet. Native Americans called itperu. Turkey was introduced to the early Pilgrim settlers by the Native American Wampanoag tribe after the Pilgrims arrived in 1620.

The popularity of wild turkeys nearly wiped them out, according to the writings of Peggy Trowbridge Filippone, a food journalist employed by The federal government stepped in with legal protection in 1991, and wild turkeys have since made a comeback and are now found in 49 states.

If you have a home-cooked dinner lined up for Turkey Day, more power to you. But if you are looking for a professional chef and restaurant staff to fete you and clean up the mess during your stay at The Rose Hotel, there is no shortage of options. reports that Blackhawk Grille, Bridges Restaurant, Patrick David’s and Esin Restaurant in Danville, The Brass Door and Max’s Diner in San Ramon, Mimis Café and Black Angus Steakhouse in Dublin, and Handles Gastropub in Pleasanton all offer three-course Thanksgiving dinners. Prices range from $15 to $45 per person (many with a separate kids’ menu) and offerings range from the traditional to gourmet (Sea Salt and Lavender Roasted Turkey with Pan Gravy, for example).

If you prefer a large holiday buffet, advises that you might want to opt for Porters Restaurant in Livermore or Faz in Danville and Pleasanton. Others, like Piatti in Danville and Cellar 9 Restaurant and McNamara’s Steak and Chop House in Dublin offer a modified menu with special a la carte dishes or full Thanksgiving meals.

But book soon because reservations get snapped up quickly. Also check holiday hours as some restaurants close early. For example, Max’s in San Ramon serves Thanksgiving dinner until 3 p.m. and Blackhawk Grille in Danville offers its three-course meal from noon to 6:30 p.m.

If you prefer to dine at home, there are plenty of upscale grocery stores and small catering companies that will prepare simple sides or the complete dinner for you to heat and eat: San Ramon’s Whole Foods sells a “traditional organic turkey holiday dinner” package that serves eight, plus a variety of holiday dishes a la carte. Gene’s Fine Foods in Pleasanton can set you up with a full Thanksgiving dinner, including fully cooked Diestel turkeys and side dishes. Draeger’s Market in Blackhawk also offers a large holiday catering menu.

Several local restaurants and caterers offer customized Thanksgiving dinners. San Ramon-based Thyme to Eat, which operates a kitchen in Livermore, has a holiday package for $22.95 per person that includes turkey or ham with all the traditional sides, pumpkin pie and even Chef Keith’s homemade Tom & Jerry Mix (you supply the alcohol).

GourMade Cookery in Pleasanton offers ready-to-cook holiday packages that include locally raised free-range turkey, San Francisco sourdough stuffing, cinnamon cider cranberries apple caramel pie and more.

For your main course, Main Street Meat & Fish Market offers free-range turkeys, spiral sliced hams, prime rib roasts, lobster tails and, yes, even turduckens.

San Ramon’s Simple Elegance Catering (a division of Ruggie’s) offers a traditional turkey dinner with all the fixings, and Livermore’s Checkers Catering offers an expansive holiday menu.

Pleasanton’s A Tasteful Affair catering company offers a traditional Thanksgiving dinner package for $18.95 per person. Wente isn’t open on Thanksgiving, but fans of the winery’s restaurant can order the Wente Take Home Holiday Thanksgiving meal that includes free-range turkey with apricot-orange blossom honey glaze, toasted bread stuffing, cranberry compote, salad, sweet potato gratin, spiced pumpkin pie and more.

All of the aforementioned restaurants are a short distance — some just a few minute walk — from The Rose Hotel.

With or without us, we wish you and yours a happy and peaceful Thanksgiving holiday.