Oh, turkey: while its feathered counterpart, chicken, continues to ride a wave of resurgent popularity, the unwieldy bird tends to fade into the woodwork shortly after Thanksgiving. Save for sporadic appearances in water-logged sandwiches, of course, which—let’s be honest—bear a bulk of the blame for turkey’s perennial PR problem.
Yet the following spots aim to salvage turkey’s reputation once and for all, eschewing outsourced cold cuts for house-roasted bird, and sidelining off-season tomatoes and iceberg for farmstead cheese, cranberry condiments and more.
Since Greenpoint’s “Finer Diner” is all about updating greasy spoon favorites, it’s no surprise they turned their attention this season to the requisite club sandwich. On the menu until Christmas, the leaning tower of turkey echoes Thanksgiving flavors with strips of lemon-sage bird, layers of buttered mashed potatoes, spoonfuls of calvados-spiked cranberry sauce, and of course, masses of Pepperidge Farms-based stuffing.
68 Greenpoint Ave., Greenpoint
Bread & Spread
This godsend to DUMBO’s lunch scene (prior to the Watchtower reno, anyway), spared local workers a trip to the deli case at Peas & Pickles, serving made-to-order sammies like free range organic Tuscan roast turkey, adorned with watercress, crispy shallots, muenster cheese and cranberry mustard, on a seven grain-studded hero.
147 Front St., DUMBO
This gourmet bodega boasts a highly respectable sandwich selection with two terrific roasted turkey options. The #4 is augmented with manchego cheese, peppadew peppers, house-pickled shallots and harissa mayo and served on a baguette, while the #11 is a take on a reuben, including fontina, sauerkraut and homemade thousand island dressing, pressed on hearty slices of multigrain.
242 Wythe Ave., Williamsburg
Twin Suns Deli
It’s always Thanksgiving at Bushwick’s switchel-dispensing goods and sundries shop, whose day-to-night sandwich menu regularly features the “Pilgrim,” roast turkey moistened with cranberry preserves, Dukes mayo and gobs of baguette dressing, squished inside a bouncy Martin’s hero roll.
244 Himrod St., Bushwick
While best known for classic proteins like pulled pork, ribs and brisket, you’ll also find whole turkeys crowding Hometown’s smoker, available sliced and by the pound, or incorporated in the H.T.B.C sandwich, along with pastrami bacon, lettuce, tomato, mayo and Dijon mustard, layered between squares of brioche Texas toast.
454 Van Brunt St, Red Hook
Forget about meatballs, marinara and motz, it’s the unassuming (and not especially Italian) turkey sandwich that’s long been a notable standout at Parm. And now that there’s a location in Williamsburg, Brooklynites can finally see what all the fuss is about—namely, slabs of slow-roasted, honey, herb and garlic-marinated poultry, which manages to elevate standard deli add-ons like red onion, mayo and nests of shredded lettuce.
162 N 4th St., Williamsburg